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the Degree Confluence Project
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Armenia

6.2 km (3.9 miles) NNE of Bashgyukh, Shirak, Armenia
Approx. altitude: 2435 m (7988 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest Multimap world confnav)
Antipode: 41°S 136°W

Accuracy: 5 m (16 ft)
Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: from the confluence looking east #3: gps pic #4: us at the confluence #5: the valley we followed to the confluence (taken at 3 kilometres distance from the CP) #6: the high plane with the Karachac Pass #7: still two kilometres to go

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  41°N 44°E (visit #1)  

#1: the confluence 30m distance

(visited by Philipp Funovits and Anna Steiner)

20-Aug-2005 -- If you want to visit this confluence, be sure to have a car at your disposal, and make it a 4WD for better measure. Maybe you’ll get a taxi driver to bring you there, but most propably her will refuse to continue at some point, the roads near the confluence are extremely terrible –even for current armenian standards. We took the bus, which was a mistake. We started from G’umri, where we asked for someone to drive us up to the Karachac Pass, where the CP is situated. We were referred to the bus which took of at 3 pm. It needed more than two hours for the 40 kilometers to Musajeljan, the little village 5km from the CP. The reason was not only the difficulty the 30 year old engine had climbing to the high plain, but the frequent stops and detours to pick up people in some suburb, fetch and stow bulky spare parts fore mysterious machines, buy gasoline and so forth.

According to the maps we had consulted before visiting this point, the confluence lays near a major road connecting G'umri and Tashir. We figured that there would be a reasonable amount of traffic, which would offer a fair chance to get back hitchhiking. In reality the CP lays at 2400m elevation on the slopes of mountains rising from a sparsely populated elevated plain 2000 m above sea level stretching over north east Armenia. The road turned out a dirt track used by local shepherds and farmers.

When we arrived at Musajeljan the bus driver told us, that this was his home village, end of the journey. He would bring the remaining passengers to the neighbouring village, and call it a day. Tomorrow morning he would return to G’umri. Since the only traffic up there seemingly consisted of tractors and combine harvesters returning from the fields, there appeared to be no chance of getting back to G’umri the same day. We got an offer for a lift back to G’umri, but at an insane price we couldn’t afford.

We were five in five kilometers distance of the CP, and had a reasonable chance to get there before dusk, but apart from that we were in trouble. But fortune favours fools. Someone called the village teacher Ms. Torosjan, who spoke fluent German (she had studied German and lived for some time in East Germany). We explained our situation and what we wanted to do. She gave us her adress, told us to do what we had come for, and return to her house afterwards. She offered that we could stay with her for one night and return to G’umri the next day. We accepted gladly and a little shamefaced.

Musajeljan is on the southern side, the CP on the northern slopes of a small grassy mountain range. It is considerably colder than G’umri up there, and the stiff breeze constantly blowing over the plain made the conditions even more unpleasant. We went around the range on the western side, and followed a little valley eastwards for two kilometers after that. The last three kilometres we approached the CP hiking along the slopes on the mountains. The terrain was easy and we aimed straight for the point. We made it to the point before 8 pm, took the pictures and celebrated. On the way back we met a lot of shepherds bringing their flocks back down. We arrived at M about 9:30 pm, and got a enormous supper from Ms Torosjan before falling into bed.


 All pictures
#1: the confluence 30m distance
#2: from the confluence looking east
#3: gps pic
#4: us at the confluence
#5: the valley we followed to the confluence (taken at 3 kilometres distance from the CP)
#6: the high plane with the Karachac Pass
#7: still two kilometres to go
ALL: All pictures on one page (broadband access recommended)