2015-11-08 -12 131
100th Successful Geohash! On a hillside in the bush near the road from the Stuart Highway to Marakai, opposite Marton Dam.
Saturday brought my attention to this one. A bit of a no-brainer, really. I'd been sitting on 99 successful geohashes for a couple of weeks and had my eye out for a worthy 100th - this was the opportunity.
Having slept in a bit, I left the house at 8am on my dilapidated road bike and rode down the old Katherine Rail Trail to Finlay's Joint at Palmerston. Here I luxuriated in a long, eggy breakfast reading The Saturday Paper before venturing on towards the hash.
Rather than take my usual circumperambulating route through Berry Springs like usual, I went straight at it down the Stuart Highway, carefully not freaking out when road-trains passed me by, snaking and swaying all over the road as they do.
At Acacia Springs I stopped off at a servo to refuel my water stocks, it having reached 38 degrees C and fluctuating between 40 and 80 percent humidity. I stashed one of my drink bottles in the ice-bag cooler for the ride home, all the while chortling at my own brilliance for having thought of this. Unfortunately, my mood was somewhat dampened by the 'Reduced-to-clear' basket containing post-used-by-date muesli bars that were in fact sold at full price - I'd left the shop by the time I'd realised this. I believe this problem to be universal, rather than just being confined to the First World.
After another hour or so, in which I rode through the intense heat along the highway while fretting about having somehow completely stuffed up the transcription of the geohash coordinates to my GPS and relying on non-existent phone reception for accurate positioning, I hit the turnoff to Marakai. It was a dusty, corrugated dirt road winding deep into the bush. After a couple of kms, and just before I was about to turn left to trek through the wilderness for the hash, my phone suddenly (bizarrely) regained full 4G reception, so I was able to get the coordinates and correctly turn RIGHT for the hash, all the while live-messaging my approach to fellow-geohasher Lachie in Melbourne.
Clomping around a hill I reached the point, cracked my home-brought homebrew stout for the big One-O-O, and feverishly shared the experience to Facebook denizens the world over. Quietly, I contemplated my geohash #1 and how far I've come since then. Pretty much nowhere.
I returned to 'civilisation' via a view of Marton Dam, the Berry Springs non-road-trainy route, a cracking sunset over the Inpex Gas Plant beyond Elizabeth River and a lamb kebab in Berrimer. Oh, and I got a flat outside Acacia Springs on the way back, which was a bit of a bitch.
All up, I rode 175 kms. Here is my route.
| Felix Dance earned the Bicycle geohash achievement