Sunday, August 04, 2013

A mystery to me.


Saturday Bernie and I were heading out to the Unitas mountains to do a little exploring and fishing.
As we hauled down a simple road we stopped to check out this little monument.
 
So...in 1873 some guy showed up at this particular spot and was able to determine that it was EXACTLY  the 41st parallel of the north latitude with the 34th degree of the west longitude (west of Washington D.C)
He put up the red rock marker that was inscribed with his name and various numbers.
OK then.

I did a 360 degree look around.

I tried to imagine what this area would have looked before the road was laid...

and before the fence posts were put in.

The idea that Mr. A. V. Richards could, via astronomy and surveying skills, determine where he was, exactly, on the planet, and also determining that he was on the southwest corner of Wyoming amazes me.

My ignorance concerning surveying and how astronomy figures into it is profound.
My appreciation of the beauty around me is like wise profound.
I bet it wasn't this pretty on the November day when Mr. Richards made his determination.
I hope that some where along the way he got to see it in summer splendor.

7 comments:

Pondside said...

When I think of those early explorers and then the surveyors who followed I am humbled. They did such HUGE and important work in a landscape that offered many life and death choices. It all looks benign, or at worst, challenging today - then, it was an enormous thing to head out into the wilderness.

ellen b. said...

A mystery to me, too, but I really love the scenery!

RoeH said...

That's amazing. And I find myself driving in the car and suddenly....where am I? Where am I going? And he figures out a parallel. And then how did they make as good a map of the United States in those early years as they did them? They couldn't see it from above.

And another thing......aww the heck with it. :)

Vee said...

It is pretty interesting to think about! I recently rewatched the PBS Ken Burns' series on Lewis and Clark. They did some pretty amazing calculations, too, that were very impressive. Math...so not my thing, but that doesn't mean that I'm not in awe of the design behind it.

Lorrie said...

It's a mystery to me, too. When we lived in Ecuador, we visited the Equator monument. There are actually several markers for the equator, depending on the explorers. But it's amazing to me how close they all came way back in the 18th century. Such courage and skill.
Your scenery is beautiful - and very likely prettier than in November, although every month has its own loveliness.

Rosella said...

That is amazing!! Brilliant minds and courage ... Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures and musings of this interesting spot!

Sara said...

It never ceases to amaze me also, the things people were able to do in ages past. The scenery is certainly very pretty in summer. Wonder if it may have been covered with snow when he found that spot . . .