11-Feb-2001 -- We had traveled from our home in Louisville, Kentucky, to Greensboro,
Alabama, for an unexpected family gathering on this February weekend. We decided
that on the drive home, we would attempt to identify a degree confluence. After
checking the pending confluences list (we learned our lesson the hard way, Sharon
had been a few days short for confluence 38N 85W), we realized that the confluence
in Gadsden, Alabama, remained available.
We obtained maps, and saw that our destination was immediately off I-59. However,
it seemed to fall quite close to the shoreline of the Coosa River. We wondered if we
would have to get wet to obtain this confluence, and left Greensboro hoping for the
Upon our arrival to Gadsden, we parked at a local WalMart, headed for the river,
and walked southward. As we watched our north-south GPS coordinate improve,
we began to experience some doubt as to whether we would stay dry for this
confluence ... the riverbanks seemed to be ending, about 40 steps too far to the
Then, as if placed there intentionally, a sticky peninsula of thick mud appeared and
jutted into the river exactly at the latitude in question. With the squishy mud threatening
to swallow her shoes, Sharon carefully took the needed steps to secure the confluence.
Thankfully, the water level of the river was low, otherwise this would have been an
"attempted," instead of a successful, visit. It was too cold to go swimming!
As an aside, we also successfully found two Geocaches
on the way home, one in Birmingham, Alabama, and one in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It
was certainly an eventful day!