11-May-2018 -- As I had been invited to the state of Indiana, and would be here for almost a week, and as I had been promoting and supporting the use of geotechnologies at universities and at the Indiana GIS conference, a confluence visit seemed like the most perfect capstone. And so, just after the conference ended, I decided to aim for 40 North 85 West.
I journeyed south out of Fort Wayne on US Highway 27 and looked forward to being on state and county roads for awhile, rather than on interstate highways. US 27 is the easternmost north-south US highway in Indiana; Ohio lies between 5 and 15 miles to the east. As I meandered along, I reflected on the conference keynote I had given that morning and I hoped my message was well received. The countryside here in east-central Indiana is fairly flat, with just a few broad hills, and full of blossoms, as they had a late spring this year, and things normally blooming in April were blooming here in May. As I drove south, it became a bit more rolling but still fairly flat. The late afternoon became overcast and it drizzled slightly, but I enjoyed seeing some Amish farms and buggies in this part of the state, more than I expected. At Lynn I drove west on US 36 for 5 minutes, then south on Bloomington Road. South of the Randolph County Line Road, I came to a stop. Driving west and up the lane there at a very slow pace to the top of a small knoll with some barns and sheds, I passed some sheep grazing to the south. I stopped and looked around. Fortunately, there were no dogs and all was still.
I gathered a few supplies and set out. Nobody was in sight except some people working in the field across the road to the east. I saw that the field that the confluence was located in was fenced, but as I walked west, I saw that the mid-sized barn had a gate in its south side, and by entering it I would be in the pasture close to the confluence point. I was already less than 100 meters from the point but thought I could do better with a better view of the actual land housing the point.
So, I walked through the barn, spending a few minutes looking around because I am not often in barns, and into the field, making sure to close the gate behind me. In 5 minutes I was at the south end of the field, looking at the confluence about 30 meters in front of me. Being sensitive to the electric fence there, and not wanting to disturb the field to the south, I called it good enough and took photographs and video. I made sure to stand on 85 West.
I stayed no more than 10 minutes on the site. The field was a bit rolling, with decent views in all directions, but especially to the south, downslope, and southeast. The nearest home was about about a half mile southeast of where I stood. It was a cloudy spring day with the temperature around 72 F (22 C). It was great to be back on 40 North. I have a long line of points along 40 North Latitude, from the California-Nevada border in 2003 on the west to a golf course in New Jersey on the east. Earlier this year I visited 40 North 0 on the Prime Meridian in Spain. I have also stood on 85 West many times, from Michigan on the north to Georgia on the south end. With this confluence I now have more than a half dozen points in Indiana, including a stop at 41 North 85 West earlier just one degree north of here this week on this same trip. I walked out the way I came in and wished peace upon all who worked this farm.
After the confluence visit, I drove south and had a nice look at the town of Williamsburg, about 5 blocks wide and 5 blocks long. Then I drove south to I-70 and west to Indianapolis, not arriving there until 10:30pm. Get out there and explore!