2013-11-01 47 13

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Fri 1 Nov 2013 in Salzburg, Austria:
47.8540214, 13.1564317

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Next to the Autobahn near Eugendorf, 10 km east of Salzburg.

dawidi[edit]

... planned to go to Munich in the evening for a birthday party, so he was going to buy a "Bayern-Ticket" all-day rail pass anyway; also he would return at night with the last train, when getting home from the central station by bus was not an option, so he was going to bring his bicycle along as well. The day was clearly cut out for a "slight detour"-ish geohashing expedition along the way.

When the coordinates were announced, there were several options. Under a roof on private property in 48 12, in the middle of a residential road in Rosenheim in 47 12, a (presumably muddy) field in 47 11, and next to a motorway in 47 13. The last option was the most tempting, because this graticule was the last one missing for dawidi in completing his Minesweeper (centered on 48 12), it would be a Border Geohash and it was the most ambitious one that seemed like it could just about work within the given time constraints.

Effectively, leaving home at 7:00 in the morning and eating breakfast on the train, he arrived at Salzburg central station shortly before 11:00, and then had a little over two hours to find a way out of the town, cycle 12 kilometers while climbing about 250m in elevation to the hash, and then climb another 100 meters to a mountain pass and coast back down to the station through a different valley.

That plan worked out pretty much as expected. The roads were not too crowded and mostly lead where they were supposed to, the weather was very nice, and he reached the hash meadow a few minutes before half of his allotted time was up. However, the GPS insisted on the exact spot being about 5-7 meters beyond a metal wire fence separating the meadow from the motorway, and clearly, this Geohashing Discouragement Grid was not to be circumvented... which means dawidi's minesweeper will stay incomplete for the time being.

Having spent a few minutes taking pictures and downing a cup of tea, he pushed his bike back onto the road and continued cycling uphill as fast as he reasonably could. The ride back down should be significantly faster, and that was indeed necessary... when he got to the mountain pass (with a sign next to the road giving the elevation), there was only a little over half an hour left of the two hours between trains. Despite being tricked into leaving the main road a couple of times (stupid 50-meter cycleway segments...) he managed to coast back down to Salzburg non-stop at about 30kph, and had just enough time left to visit a bakery in the station before getting on his train to Munich, leaving at 13:09.

The train reached Munich about half an hour late after an unusual (and only partially scheduled) detour, so he missed the metro connection he meant to take - but that was okay, because it caused him to meet one of his relatives, who was also on her way to the same party he was going.