Benchmarks, trains, other stuff

An important skill, when looking for benchmarks, as opposed to geocaches, is knowing when it is silly, or dangerous, or even lethal, to continue looking. I just came back from looking for this one, and I did not find it. I know exactly where it is, but I’m not dressed for it. For dying, that is. Perhaps I’ll go back some day and look again. It’s at the top of a cutting that the tracks run through, and so I had to go quite a ways down the track to find a way to get up onto the side. But then I could not find it without risking my life on the edge of the cutting, which was crumbling with every step I took.

Yes, I know, I should not be on the tracks. It’s probably trespassing, or something, and a good way to get squished. But I’ve been walking tracks as long as I can remember, and have not been squished yet. Although my grandfather really liked to tell about his friend who went walking on the tracks, and all they found was his nose. There’s something slightly apocryphal about that story.

I’m also perpetually amazed at how far out of their way people will go to throw away their trash. There I am, up on this cutting, sure I’m going to die any minute, and there’s beer bottles, a dinner plate, a hub cap, and a car battery. I mean, come on, surely it would be easier to throw those away at home? I seriously don’t know how someone could have gotten out there with all that trash. On one side is the train track, and on the other is a cow pasture. The area between is heavy brush, barbed wire fence, and a 20-foot shale cliff. Yet someone has taken the trouble to lug their coors bottle out here to dispose of it.

Later today, I’ll upload photos of where I didn’t find the benchmark, and of where I didn’t fall to my death from a crumbling cliff.