2011-05-21 45 -122

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Sat 21 May 2011 in 45,-122:
45.3363335, -122.6496377

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In the Willamette River near West Linn. Yeah: In.



Since there are no takers on a (probably) successful Retro expedition, I'll go and gaze out at a hashpoint in the river. I guess I'll aim for 4ish.

(The Universe had other plans for me, though.)


Jim went to the Farmer's market as usual, but got distracted talking to folks, including some local municipal employees I didn't expect to be there. Thus, I didn't get around to finding a pie for Geohashing Day. My backup plan to go by a local store also failed when the route didn't end up going by the planned store. Finally, I just gave up and headed for the hashpoint.

After I started out for the hashpoint, it suddenly dawned on me that the GPS was both not programmed, as well as not turned on, which was going to make it a challenge to make sure I was headed to the right place. So, when I got to "the other side of town", I stopped to quickly program the GPS, a plan which would come back to haunt me. I continued on, and then noticed that the GPS was again no longer turned on. Apparently the batteries had died. Luckily, I've learned from previous experience, and two spare AA batteries now live in the dry box with the camera, so I've always got spares for both devices.

Another stop fixed that problem, and some study of the map got me headed down the little side road towards the park and hashpoint. There was a park on shore near the hashpoint, and I figured I'd stop there to look around, and figured I could gaze out at the hashpoint. When I pulled in, I found a lot of people, grills, boats and a lot of water-ski equipment.

At first, I thought it was a local water-ski club, but some questions revealed that it was a local sports shop, Active Water Sports, was having a Demo day, and they had lots of boats that were happy to take people out on the water. So I wandered down to the dock, and talked to one of the people standing around, and he said he'd be happy to take me out to the coordinates. So, I climbed aboard and we headed out onto the river, following the arrow of the GPS. However, instead of leading us to the middle of the river where Google Maps was showing me, we were lead close to the far shore, and told it was up on the highway there.

This didn't make any sense to me. Google Maps was sometimes off by a bit, but this was way too much. However, examination of my pockets revealed that my PDA hadn't joined my GPS and I on our trip onto the water, so I couldn't check the coordinates.

We returned to shore, where I thanked my pilot and headed to the car to check the coords.

As soon as I looked at the coords in the GPS, I knew I was in trouble. I had 5 digit threes in a row, and I would have remembered that pattern. The PDA revealed that there was supposed to be a 6 in the middle of those. Fixing that brought the coordinates 0.2 miles closer, which really would be in the water, as expected.

Now I just had to screw up my courage to ask for another trip onto the water. I waited for some other folks to be ready to go out, so it wouldn't just be a trip for me, and asked if I could stick along and get a little side jaunt. They were fine with that, and I joined them. There were three young men with "wakeboards" they wanted to try out. One had never done it before, but had snowboarded, and one was intermediate level, I guess, and the third was pretty advanced.

Our boat operator, Scott, was very nice helping the newcomer get started and had helpful pointers for both of the more experienced folks. (He's apparently a sports instructor as well.)

After we spent 20 minutes or so going up and down the river, we headed back, which was towards the hashpoint, Speeding upriver following the GPS arrow, I saw the GPS register 10 feet to the hashpoint before we managed to stop and turn around. I suppose it might have been a Speed Racer, except I'm not sure what the legal speed would be.  :-) I didn't really take any pictures, figuring the Tracklog would be enough. (If the story wasn't good enough by itself...)

We came through at a slower pace the second time, and headed back to the Dock.

I climbed back onto shore and decided to head north to 2011-05-22 45 -122



Need to be extracted from Camera


Jim earned the 2011 Geohashing Day achievement
by catching a boat ride in the (45, -122) graticule on May 21st 2011.
Jim earned the Water geohash achievement
by reaching the (45, -122) geohash on 2011-05-21 by boat.