Since it’s been a bit wet to ride as consistently as I have been lately, I decided that some better local mapping is in order. While I have been driving roads and correcting local data on OpenStreetMap, I felt that the map still looked a bit bare, especially given the bridge and fords crossing nothing.
Free satellite imagery unfortunately doesn’t have enough resolution locally to make out the course of the creek, so I decided that there was nothing for it but to actually take a GPS (my new Garmin Oregon 300) out along the creek.
The first attempt was just along the section out from the house. I went up and back for about 1 km through not very deep water, apart from one section, trying not to get covered in spider webs.
That still looked a little sparse, so I went out again yesterday, after several days of heavy rain. This time I was struggling against the swollen current as well; the worst of it was pulling myself up a rocky section of rapids using both hands, holding the GPS in my teeth. Another section had me dog-paddling with one hand over a section too deep to walk.
The water wasn’t too cold, maybe because I eased myself into it by coming down a small side-creek and I was more concerned for the first while in the main creek to not get swept off my feet than with the temperature.
It was a real throwback in memory to childhood trips down the flooded creek in inner tubes. We would be flooded in for days sometimes, and large portions of the day were spent in roaming up and down the valley with friends playing in the floodwater.
Once again, I came out of the creek with bruised and bloody shins and stubbed toes. It felt like I’d accomplished something; and the map looks somewhat better for it.