14-Jun-2001 -- Visitors: Darcy Stewart (my father), Lance Farrell (friend), and Jesse Stewart (myself).
Our group of three optimistically set out for 37N 84W at about 6:15pm EST from my home in Burnside, KY. We had hardly 4 hours of daylight remaining but we estimated the confluence's position to be less than 1/2 mile from the nearest road after careful examination of USGS topo maps of the area. We drove to London, KY via KY Hwy 80 and then turned south toward Corbin, KY. Soon after passing by the towns of Sublimity and Boring, KY, we were ready for some excitement. Lance noted our linear distance from the confluence was a mere 6 miles. Darcy took command as navigator while Lance amused himself by updating us on our current velocity every few seconds using his Magellan brand handheld GPS.
Zeroing in on the confluence's vicinity was fairly easy with Darcy's quick map reading and Lance's verification with the GPS unit. We soon came to a stop at a small house less than a mile from our final destination. We stepped out of the van and found ourselves in the heart of ... rooster country? The owner of this property was apparently a chicken lover, and needlessly out for lunch.
Only slightly daunted, we backed up to the next house and explained our quest to the elderly couple living there. They thoughtfully suggested we should make our approach from the other side of the ridge.
And so we did. The owner of this property, while only slightly excited to here the news that his land contained 37N 84W, bid us good luck. Lance assured him this would likely be the last day anyone would show up with a request for such a peculiar right of passage, and Darcy explained just where we needed to go.
In the forest behind the land owner's house we were met with briars, thorns, thickets, briars ... and poison everything. Luckily we were only .6 miles from the spot. Soon the GPS confirmed we were less than .1 miles from the confluence. The sun was hanging at a threatening 15 degrees above the horizon, so we paused in an interesting clearing to grab some photos before continuing. After we were satisfied with a dozen or so pictures, we continued back into the forest to find the exact confluence. Victory was ours after about 5 more minutes of walking. We took some more snapshots with Lance’s digital camera and quickly headed back for the van before darkness overtook us.
Thanking the owner once again for his understanding, we drove back toward Corbin. Chicken seemed to still be on our minds, so Darcy led us to the site of the very first Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant, founded by Colonel Sanders (see pictures). The sun set as we enjoyed our spicy chicken strips and the drive home.