2012-06-18 38 -90
Queeny County Park in Ballwin, MO
This week I'm teaching in Clayton. Tonight I'm having dinner with friends I don't get too see very often. But when I saw the hashpoint is reachable, I had to see if I could make it. I'll try to on the road right after work.
My students were a little ahead at the end of the day, so we broke a half hour early. I needed it. The plan was to meet my friends for dinner at 6:00p at a place about fifteen minutes from the hashpoint, so I was going to need to get a move on.
I pulled up to the park and was pleased to see a walking path near where I wanted to enter the woods as well as parking near that path. I got out and started down the way. ...only to find the bridge across the creek was out and signs were telling me to keep clear.
Well I didn't keep clear. I climbed the four feet or so down and then up on the other side. There was the remnants of a path over on the other side and it seemed to be going the way I needed to go, so I followed it for a while. There were a few orange ribbons hanging from trees. At first I thought I remembered being told at camp in my youth that those were markers for trees needing maintenance, but the marked trees seemed healthy. Ah well.
There was another spot where there had been some serious erosion from flooding and a sewage manhole was exposed several feet and the path got really thin. I took another picture and made my way around. Despite all the buzzing near my head, the bugs (namely mosquitos) were mild. There were, however, several times I ducked under trees only to run hair first into a spiderweb leaving that creepy feeling on my skin. [shudder]
The last major hurdle was the creek. Luckily the water was low and the creek bed was full of rocks and stones. I was having flashbacks to my first geohash adventure but this time I was away from home and couldn't simply throw away those shoes. I had to be extra careful. I made it across without incident.
Eventually I did have to leave the trail and start forging my way in. There wasn't too much bushwhacking and I made it to the area without incident. I took a few pictures and then it was time to move on.
Before arriving at the park, I decided to see if there was a geocache near by and there was! Dan's Long Hike was listed as a terrain 3/5 and was only 400 feet (+/-) from the hashpoint. The owner had listed that the terrain was rough and ducking would be involved and he wasn't lying. When I got to the cache I was somehow expecting a large drum or ammo box, so I was surprised to find a small tupperware box tucked under some sticks near a fallen tree. When I cleared the sticks, the box was swarming with ants. Okay. No big deal. I brushed them off and picked up the box to open it. That's when I felt them on me. All over. Then I felt a bite. And another. I brushed off the bugs and put the box down and re-covered it. Better that way.
Now for the fun part. Getting back. It's amazing how all trees look alike when you are a city boy. I tried to use my GPSr's map tracks to go the way I came but I can't quite zoom that far and it doesn't update that quickly, so by the time I got back to the creek, I was some distance from where I had crossed and had to make another gentle crossing.
Not long after that I found one of my orange ribbons and then my path and I was on the fast track back to my car.
From there, I drove to dinner with friends and then back to my hotel.
| RocketMac earned the Land geohash achievement
|RocketMac earned the Hash collision honorable mention|
| RocketMac earned the Consecutive geohash achievement