10-May-2012 -- This is the first out of two confluences that I visited during a 4-day trip to Austria.
After staying in Velden at the lake Wörthersee for attending a research conference, I had the chance to visit this confluence on my return trip. I took a rental car in Villach and entered the coordinates of this confluence into the route guidance system. Then, I enjoyed a pleasant drive while totally relying on the navigation system. It was a sunny day and as I entered county road L511, there was hardly any traffic. I parked the vehicle directly at the county road at a beeline distance of 1300 m. There, I snatched my running shoes and ran up for about 30 minutes (400 m in height).
The tricky point was that the batteries of my GPS device were totally empty. To avoid the tedious process of buying new batteries, I tried to find the confluence with my smart phone. I had an application installed that was able to show coordinates by integer seconds (one arc second is about 30 m). But it also shows the remaining distance to target in meters, which I could use for locating the confluence point. Actually, we should develop an application specialized for confluence hunting: the application that I have in mind always shows the distance and direction to the nearest confluence point and warns you if you come nearby a confluence point. It also submits the images directly to confluence.org as you take them. A form assists you for the narrative. So the report can be finalized directly at the confluence point.
A forest track, which requires permission for private cars, leads directly to the confluence point. The exact location is about 5 m from that track on the mountain side. It is in a fir forest with a lot of clearance between the trees. The ground is covered with grass which just had started its seasonal sprout.
On my way back, I took the same route (ca. 4 km) to the main road.
CP Visit Details:
- Distance to an asphalt road: 920 m
- Distance to a public road: 920 m
- Distance to a track: 5 m
- Distance of parking: 1300 m
- Distance to houses: 1200 m
- Time starting the hike: 9:45 AM
- Time at the CP: 10:15 AM
- Measured height: 1627 m
- Minimal distance according to GPS: 1 m
- Position accuracy at the CP: 5 m
- Topography: steep grade, mountainous
- Vegetation: fir forest
- Weather: sunny, 18° C (felt temperature)
- Description of the CP: In Austria’s Bundesland Styria. About 400 m up on the western side of the Paalbach valley.
- Given Name: The Smart Phone Confluence
Story continues at 48°N 13°E.