13-May-2021 -- As the COVID situation precluded travel for so many months, and as a geographer I was longing to get into the field, I finally made careful preparations, and made it into the field in May 2021 to visit confluences, back roads, state lines, grain bins, railroad depots, state parks, and other out of the way places. The closest confluence points for me that I had never before visited were over 500 miles away, so I set aside some days in the field to reach them. I departed Denver Colorado USA at 4:07am, encountering some wonderfully thick fog at Limon, but then breaking free to clear skies by the time I reached the Kansas border at 7:00am. I stayed on Interstate Highway 70 until just east of Russell, and that's what I like best - getting off the interstate highways. I traveled south on State Highway 14 to Ellsworth and then to Lyons. Construction at Lyons forced me to take a road to the east, which turned out to be wonderful--due south through miles and miles of amazing rural terrain.
After I reached Nickerson, I made an arc around the west side of Hutchinson, and then anticipation rose as I left US 50 at Mohawk Road, traveled south on this gravel road to Morgan Ave, and then west to just after the 98th Meridian. I parked and gathered GPS, hat, and other necessary supplies. Looking north I realized my good fortune: No fences, and nothing had been planted. Even so, I stepped gingerly to avoid crunching any corn stalks. The field was dry, and it was getting a bit warm out, but still pleasant. Last year's corn crop remains were left in the fallow field, and it was an easy 5 minute walk north-northeast to the confluence point.
The confluence lies on flat ground with an equal view in all directions. The point is not far from the mid-sized town of Hutchinson, and most likely contains a few houses of commuters--people who like to live in the country but work in the city. The others, though, were working the land and there were fields upon fields, mostly devoted to agriculture, with a few animal pastures here and there. I saw no animals, and a few birds in the distance, but no people. A few houses were visible in just about all directions, so though rural, a fair number of people live in this area. A grain elevator is visible to the northwest. The temperature stood at a mild 70 F (21 C) in early afternoon in the middle of spring. I had not stood on this confluence before, although I had over the years stood on the 38th parallel many times, from California on the west, where I could see the Pacific Ocean, to Virginia on the east. I had also stood on this meridian, numerous times, from South Dakota on the north to Texas on the south. I now have a nice assortment of at least 10 points in the great state of Kansas. After spending at least 20 minutes on site, trying to get the perfect picture of my Map This shirt, the field, and the sky, I made my departure. I also filmed a video, which is located here on my Our Earth YouTube channel. I was right on schedule, and set my sights for one degree to the south, at 37 North 98 West.
Get out there and explore the world.