Tuesday, August 5, 2014

OTBR: A Drainage Ditch in Las Vegas

Latitude: N 36° 13.638
Longitude: W 115° 19.560

A child on a road trip with his family asks, "Where are we?" and the father answers, "Let's check the map. We're off the blue roads [the Interstate Highways marked in blue on the road atlas]. We're off the red roads [the US and state highways]. We're off the black roads [the county highways]. I think we're off the map altogether." It was always my dream to be off the map altogether.

After the jump, a few of the random places (and I mean random literally) that I visited vicariously last month that are "off the blue roads".

  • in a drainage ditch in Las Vegas ("One takes one's life in one's hands entering a drainage ditch during a storm, but this morning was sunny and bright. Before I got back to my car my phone alerted me of a flash flood warning in the nearby mountains.")
  • in a meadow with knee-high grass near Bradford, England
  • in San Jose, in a parking lot, 87 meters behind a razor-wire topped gate with a chain and no-trespassing sign, across the street from the Happy Hollow Zoo
  • in Estonia, in soft forest behind a very wet and soft swamp ("it was possible to move only by stepping from sod to sod, keeping good balance")
  • in Clear Lake, a large recreational lake near the Johnson Space Center outside Houston ("if it had been any further out in the lake I could not have done it")
  • in an irrigated cornfield on river bottom land outside Columbus, Nebraska ("I was surprised to see ditchweed, aka marijuana, lining the cornfield")
  • in Minnesota, south of Quilt Drive, a gravel road through farm country, east of a swale that is untilled to prevent erosion with corn fields to both east and west
  • in bushland near Corindi Beach, New South Wales ("I walked into the bushland towards zero and immediately saw a large kangaroo peering intently at me")
  • on the golf course of the Lake Arbor Golf Club in Arvada, Colorado
  • west of Highway 95 just prior to the town of Searchlight, Nevada ("Across the street was a giant billboard advertising the Aquarius Casino and Resort in Laughlin and another for the Searchlight Community Church where everybody was welcome.")
  • just off Arizona 77 near the entrance to Biosphere 2, the huge ecological research center run by the University of Arizona
  • across the BUSY Victoria Road in Rozelle, New South Wales, a suburb of Sydney ("65 m was the closest I was game to get, cause if I had crossed the traffic it would have taken 'forever' to get there and back")
  • on the grounds of the Police Training Academy northeast of Kansas City, in a racetrack area "where trainees learn to drive wild and crazy"
  • just off a soybean field in Kansas ("lots of clover, Queen Anne's lace, Patridge peas, small sunflowers and an orange flowered plant which I can't identify")
  • in a soybean field in Illinois ("In fact, both sides of the road were soybeans and a lot of the immediate area was soybeans. Usually, we see mostly or entirely corn.")
  • beyond reach in on-base housing of Scott Air Force Base in Illinois
  • and close to a road in somewhat rugged and heavily wooded country of Nebraska's Indian Cave State Park

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