14-Apr-2004 -- It was my daughters' Spring Break and time for another California Confluence Adventure! 39n-123w would be the sixth of seven confluence attempts for this trip.
It seemed so simple and easy (but then again, so did 36n-120w…) The TerraServer image matched my National Geographic TOPO! California map and I had created primary and alternate routes and uploaded them to my GPS prior to embarking on this confluence adventure. Besides, a visit to 39n-123w now would make my summer confluence visit plans much simpler. What could get in the way of a successful visit now?
Northbound on US-101 through Santa Rosa would have been faster on my bike! It was extremely slow going in the middle of the day due to traffic congestion. At CA-175 we turned right and were getting much closer to our objective. Low clouds and mist were the weather of the day. Going the speed limit on this twisting and wet road was clearly not fast enough for some of the local traffic. As we approached the bend in the road with another dirt road leading north to the confluence at 38 59.342N and 122 59.021W (and my first waypoint) we encountered the dreaded “No Trespassing” sign. There was also a lot of activity underway. A large semi had off-loaded some heavy equipment that was just starting to make its way up the road (and on my planned route). Encountering a bunch of stares from the other side of the sign shown in Picture #1 (they were probably wondering what our intentions were), I continued east to my alternate starting point at 38 59.329N 122 58.987W only to encounter another “No Trespassing” sign shown in Picture #2.
Rats! Thwarted again!
We continued east along CA-175 towards Clear Lake looking for an option from the east. My topo maps showed a 4WD trail – at the bottom of the hill. There were signs posted all along the side of the road. Even if they hadn’t been there, attempting this confluence from the east would involve a significant change in elevation.
The approach from the north may now be the best bet. Various maps show the confluence as one of the vertices of the South Cow Mountain Recreation Area (BLM land) a little more research and another attempt required for this one.
We were now four out of six for successful attempts. Onward towards 39n-121w!