02-Jul-2013 -- This would be the ninth confluence in a trip that began as a line along 40N. Earlier in the day, I had successfully visited 36N 111W.
There’s not much in the way of civilization between 36N 111W and 34N 111W but it was an interesting drive. We decided to see if we could get any radio reception. We found only one AM station (nothing on FM) and the announcer would effortlessly transition between English and Navajo in between a wide variety of country and Native American songs. We transitioned back to XM radio after about an hour of interesting culture.
We were southbound on Highway 288 or as Google has it named the Desert to Tall Pines Highway or the Globe-Young Highway. We turned west onto NF-416 here.
Picture #10 shows us returning onto the dirt 288 and the primitive road warning signs. We stopped at 36N and I would hike due west approximately 1100 meters to the confluence. An approach from the north would involve a significant up/down bushwacking. As it turned out, it was relatively clear enroute and was less than a 20 minute hike.
I found the confluence on a north facing slope with significantly more vegetation than I had encountered on the way to the confluence. There was a distinctive burned tree about 2 meters from the existing cairn that you can see in Picture #8. I set up my Trimble and Spot on the cairn and began taking pictures.
The north view shows the ravine that you would have to cross if you approached from the road there. The east view shows the slope of the terrain and the vegetation. The south view shows a fallen dead tree and a lot of very dry debris. It was very hot out and the fire risk was high. There were thunderstorms in the distance and it was uncomfortably hot out.
After my data capture was complete I hiked back to the Tahoe, rinsed off and we began our drive back home.
TerraSync post processing of the GPS data reveals the actual confluence location was 1.8 meters southeast with a horizontal precision of 2.1 meters from where I had initially placed the Trimble.
Total round trip time off of Highway 288 was 1:53 and 10.7 km. The round trip hike subset time and distance were 1:00 and 3.2 km. The primitive road sign was accurate. A high clearance vehicle would work but definitely not a passenger car. Grading the road wouldn’t help – some sections of this NF-416 are predominately sharp rocks. I was pulling a trailer – if you’re slow and careful it will not be a problem.
On our way home, we also discovered that there are no places to get gas southbound until you reach Miami, AZ. We put a lot of gas into our Tahoe on that fill up!
What an excellent confluence adventure: 9 of 9 successful visits!