11-Jun-2001 -- I think this site was trying to be ugly. After I finally got onto the correct approach road and was nearing the confluence, I began to think about the pictures I would take. To the south was the precipitous eastern escarpment of the Hot Creek Range, to the west was the remote Antelope Range, and to my left was the smooth conical form of Moody Peak. I knew that the photogenic Currant Range was to the east, but didn't expect it to be visible.
However, as I pulled up to the site itself, both the Hot Creek Range and Moody Peak dipped behind nearby ridges. Furthermore, an overcast began to obscure the sun, making the Antelope Range only visible in profile. Oh well, I found the site (about 200 feet south of a bend in the road), built a small stone cairn, and took the pictures. Little did I know how my life would soon be changed!
As I walked back to my truck, a small movement caught my eye. There it was, fluttering in the wind just feet in front of where I was parked. Apparently I had originally overlooked it while comparing my GPS display with the confluence location. I had almost driven over it!
As I'm sure all of you have heard, mysterious pink flags have been reported showing up at other confluences all over the American Southwest (well, OK, at two sites: 39N117W and 39N118W). In each case the visitor had feared missing out on being the original reporter for the site. Yet no visitation reports have been filed! And usually there has been no other evidence of (human) visitors to the site! No (human) footprints! No burger wrappers! No nothing! Just a simple pink flag on a wire stick! What does it mean? Are we really alone on this big blue marble?
Pondering these great questions of life, I loaded my stuff into the truck and roared away, smashing the stupid little flag into the dry, dry dust. Onward to my next confluence (which, ironically, I would visit on Flag Day) ...