2010-06-03 43 -121
Off Horse Ridge Frontage road.
3 Dashpoints and 1 hashpoint.
It was my day off, so i decided on an adventure. I set up an ambitious plan that involved 3 Dashpoints (see ) (AHOP, AHOB, AHOV) and this Geohashing point. The weather was supposed to be scattered showers, and I figured it would follow typical Central Oregon weather patterns, rain for 15 minuets, followed by 1/2 an hour of clouds, then maybe a little more rain. I was on my motorcycle, so I thought it would be a little wet, but I was wrong, to say the least.
The day started out by me getting a late start. I had to work late, until 0300 the night before, so I didn't even start getting ready to go until 1200. I had to pick up a spare tube for my tire (a good thing to have in the middle of the Oregon outback), and left town around 1300.
Almost as soon as I threw my leg over the bike to leave, big, fat drops of rain started falling. As I got out of town and up to speed, I discovered that my MX-type helmet (the kind with the goggles) did nothing to prevent rain drops from hitting my nose and cheekbones. Now, a rain drop doesn't feel so bad when you are walking, or even at 30 MPH, but when you are traveling at 65 MPH each one fells like a needle on your face. I almost turned around to get one of my full face helmets, but decided to improvise a scarf instead, as it was already getting late in the day. I would soon regret this decision
I headed up the Powell Butte Hwy, and as I got near Prineville, the rain let up, only to be replaced by hail. Huge noise on my helmet, pain in my face, and little pebbles of ice all over the road. Not so bad in a car, but on the bike it was no fun. I slowed down to around 30 MPH to make the noise/pain bearable, and finally made it to a gas station (Chevron) with a roof in Prineville, just as the hail stopped, and a drizzle of rain resumed. I filled up with gas, and warmed up for about 10 minuets and pressed on after receiving several dirty looks for the gas station attendant (its not like it was busy). The 1st Dashpoint was close.
The rain never let up, just varied with intensity as I tried to reach the 1st DP (AHOP). Posted private property on one side, a muddy, swollen canal on the other. I didn't feel like literary swimming onto some guys land, so the closest I got was 250m. 0 points.
The next DP (AHOV) was down the Crooked River Hwy, about 50 kilometers of twisty pavement, then another 50 kilometers of gravel. It's the last state highway in Oregon thats unpaved. I headed down it, and after about 20 minuets on the gravel/mud, with two streams of muddy water splashing on my legs, I had to stop and make a fire to warm up and dry out, as I was soaked through. Nothing that you can buy/make is waterproof enough to stand up to that amount of splashing water. After drying out under a Juniper tree, it was getting to be late (1730), so I decided to skip this DP, and cut about 80 kilometers of dirt roads out of my day. 0 points.
So, on to the next DP (AHOB). A turn off of Highway 20, 8 kilometers of dirt roads, A 350m walk, and I am there. As I am getting close to the DP, I see a newer post standing right next to, if not on, the DP. My first thought was that some one had already been to this dash point, but further inspection reveled an attempt to build a mountain bike trail. 3 points (finally).
Next, it was time for the Geohash point. It was next to Horse Ridge Frontage road, an abandoned section of Highway 20 that they use to train street painters. A short drit road, a 400m walk and the hashpoint is mine. Unfortunately, I found a road that would have taken me right to it as I was walking. oh well.
I finally got home at 2030. Total time: 7 1/2 hours, raining the whole time, except when it hailed.