28-Jan-2006 -- The university geography club's monthly newsletter often contains web links of interest. Several months ago, the featured link was for the www.confluence.org web site. After checking out the web site, I said, "hey, I've got a GPS!" It was time to pull it out of the drawer and put it to good use.
Pretty much, all of the sites in the United States have been visited, but it looks like fun anyway. Checked the confluence points in Southern California and chose the nearest one for my first visit. The reports from previous visitors helped greatly and the links to the satellite images and maps were of utmost help.
The visit to this site was extremely easy and simple to find. The previous reports are accurate in their descriptions. From the Los Angeles basin, take the 14 freeway to city of Mojave. Turn right at the gas station/signal onto highway 58 east and proceed 10.5 miles to a dirt road.
The turnoff would have been very easy to miss, if it were not for resetting the odometer in the car. If you miss the turnoff, there is a turn-around across the divided highway about a mile further down the road. If you pass the start of the Edwards Air Force base fence, you went too far.
Travel south down the dirt road, which parallels the Edwards fence line until you come to a fairly large double chain link gate on the Edwards fence. The gate will be on your left as you travel south. Directly opposite, on your right is a fairly good dirt road that you want to take, heading west. Follow this until you get to your confluence point. You will have to hike about 10-15 meters (yards) off the road to find the confluence point. The dirt roads are very easy to drive with a sedan - I didn't know what to expect and drove my Ranger pickup. If you take your sedan and it has rained recently, be careful of several low spots in the "Edwards" road. Otherwise, speeds of 30-35 MPH are easily achieved and safely sustainable.
At the confluence point, a previous visitor placed a red reflector at where he/she measured the location. This is visible in one of the images. I measured the actual location to be a few meters to the west/northwestern. As you can see from the GPS image, I was able to get all zeroes. There is a geocache box under a nearby bush.
I then set up my tripod over the GPS and took my north, east, south, and west images. There are several other pictures of the general area. To the south runs an east/west rail line. This is easily visible from the confluence point and parallels the dirt access road. When driving to the point, if you cross the tracks, you went too far.
To the far west, on the Tehachapi mountains is the wind farm. The image below shows just a small part of the farm. The image was taken from the access road next to the confluence point. There is a water main that runs parallel to the dirt access road. The two attached images show the two nearest access manholes to the confluence point. The confluence point is about in the middle between the two manholes. The three yellow-piped manhole is to the west and the two yellow-piped, upside down J pipe manhole is to the east.
In summary, this is an extremely easy confluence point to find and access. It is a good one for someone just starting out, as I am. Next... I'm going to try to get to all of California's 35N points this summer.