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Log 2014022701

Oil, oil, air and cabin air filters changed today on my 2008 Chevy HHR LS. The  mileage on the odometer is as shown in the attached picture. Also, the tailgate release mechanism was replaced, but that did not alleviate the tailgate's failure to pop problem.

Upon inspection, I found that the left front strut blew it's bottom seal. It probably took too much stress on the unimproved road in the Arc of Appalachia.


Log 2015022101

Currently as of the date of this log, the most recent Buckeye Trail map and guide for it's Whipple Section (North Country Trail concurrent) to date, is the 10/2010 edition (parts of this section are included on the NCTA's OH-105 map).   Based on that, the highest point for the section is 1,135ft above sea level at 39.467476, -81.467051, which is a hill top that roughly 1700ft north of German Cemetery on T623.  The section's lowest point is 609ft at 39.463776, -81.310427, which is at the bottom of Bean Ridge and along the Little Muskingum River.  Both points are within the administrative boundaries of the Wayne National Forest - Marietta Unit.


North Country Trail hikers wishing to complete Ohio must purchase maps, or obtain GIS/ GPS track data for 19 of Buckeye Trail's 26 sections and they are:

(from east to west)

Massillon Section
Bowerston Section
Belle Valley Section
Road Fork Section
Whipple Section
Stockport Section
New Straitsville Section
Old Man's Cave Section
Scioto Trail Section
Sinking Spring Section
Shawnee Section
West Union Section
Williamsburg Section
Loveland Section
Caesar Creek Section
Troy Section
St. Marys Section
Delphos Section
Defiance Section

American Discovery Trail recreationalist wishing to complete Ohio must purchase maps, or obtain GIS/ GPS track data for 9 of the Buckeye Trail's 26 sections and they are

(from east to west)

Stockport Section
New Straitsville Section
Old Man's Cave Section
Scioto Trail Section
Sinking Spring Section
Shawnee Section
West Union Section
Williamsburg Section
Loveland Section

Log 2015022101

I just received a couple updated and replacement maps from the BTA.  And where I have merged it's tracks from the BTA GIS/ GPS Data Depository before, and some had working elevation profiles and measurement, not all work like that.  Take Stockport Section for instance, I've been able to get it's track segments merged into one so it's entire length appears as one entry on my hand GPS.  But the elevation profile shows errors and it does not have a "measurement" tab in the tracks "properties" menu regardless of whether I convert it to KML or GPX.

While I was merging Stockport's tracks, I paid special attention to what direction the segments were facing before I merged.  And while the were all in order, my merges were still coming up with errors.  I'd like to blame this one on "pilot error."   I have a gut feeling that it probably is, but when working GIS tracks, I'm at a loss sometimes.  Even though what I work with is more point and click, working with KML and GPX directly relates to the XML computer programming language.  And I've had a basic computer programming class before and this feels like there's an elusive flaw in my logic, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

So, I left the Stockport as it is for now and moved on to New Straitsville Section's track segments.  Using Google Maps Engine to recreate the on-road trail, I downloaded it's tracks and that brought the section down to 50 segments.  I wasn't able to get the measurements tab to work with the tracks as they were.  So, I did a conversion, leaving every track unmerged into KML to no avail.  I then did it to GPX and I now have both.

I renamed the tracks to split merging New Straitsville Section's track segments into 4 parts.  I want to see if an entire 50mi+ section is too large for GPSVisualizer to keep track of?  Or was my method of converting the segments into GPX first and commanding it to compute the track statistics the right thing to do?

I just got word that Google Maps Engine will loose it's support on January 29th, 2016 and that I have to start shopping for another product.  I subscribe to the "pro" version. Can you hear nails screeching on a chalkboard right now?


Log 2015021401

The one thing about Buckeye Trail's map & guides is that they are not good forever.  Sometimes it's routed as it had a right to pass on private property.  If an easement wasn't made, a new owner could occupy the land and not grant the same right.  In the past, trail alerts and map updates were only granted from 4 years past the publish date.  Some of the maps more than exceeded that at retail because there weren't any changes on that section during that time. But, Buckeye started digitizing their maps.  And when they did, they started replacing ones that were made in the old style regardless how old their editions were.

As an example, the current edition of the St. Marys Section map & guide as of today is the February 2007.  If we were to go by the old rules, as soon as a newer edition of this map goes up for sale, the 2/07 will be obsolete and no longer supported (the support part may or may not actually happen).  Since I monitor the course and conditions of the trail year round for the Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource (OTHR), I have to go though all of my paper maps one by one, check their editions and note their map updates on the front cover with a Sharpie marker.  Right now, progress on the new edition of the OTHR is stopped pending the arrival of three new Buckeye Trail maps.

Aside from that, yesterday, I started writing a new document for a blog to be hosted by me here on Treeman's Adventures.  It's called "Supplementary Information : The Wilderness Loop," which regards the Road Fork, Whipple and parts of the Belle Valley and Stockport Sections of the Buckeye Trail.  I think these sort of pages are going to be the kind of thing that get updated themselves when necessary.  That's different from other blog entries here where any new information appears as a comment, or a new blog entry.


Log 2015021301

I'm getting ready to sew my patches on my convertible coat that has about a 17°F rating.  So, I purchased 4 - 500K, 3 - 100K and 1 - 10mi patches, which when sewn on will get me to as close to displaying 2,324km, or 1,444mi as the Buckeye Trail was officially measured as when I started hiking it on October 28th, 2009.

A "trail crew" is different from performing typical maintenance as an adopter.  Usually, trail crews are the ones who build the off-road trail.  And at 5 hours of service, those volunteers are entitled to the "Volunteer" patch.  I got mine about a year or two ago while volunteering on the crew that was building 18 additional miles of trail around the Michael J. Kirwan Reservoir in the West Branch State Park.  I mostly did what's called "benching."  When the trail goes along the side of a hill, the pitch of the terrain is going down (from left to right) as the trail is routed across (straight).  "Benching" is the process of digging out the hill to level out that pitch so that hikers aren't traversing the route on a slanted surface.  Otherwise, it might unbalance some of our loads, or cause one of our muscles to compensate for the other and fatigue in a way that is not uniform.

This is not a patch that one can order from the BTA Store, so I made an inquiry today regarding the purchase of 3 of them.  The one that I was given was in a hair band on my former wicker cowboy hat that I lost in Sandusky.


Log 2014021201

I assigned custom ringtones and notifications in my Samsung Galaxy Note 3 smartphone to contacts and apps today.  I need these to speak to me like Star Trek's voice of the computer.  But I don't know of anything like that, so I invented my way out of it.  My smartphone came with a stock Voice Recorder app.  But ringtones and notifications are in the .amr format and the stock app won't save to that kind of file.  So, in Google Play, I downloaded a similar app of the same name it did.

Once I got them all done, I tethered the smartphone to the computer using the USB cable.  Then, I opened the phone in Windows Explorer (Computer, My Computer), and moved it from the after market app's directory to the "Ringtones" and "Notifications" folders.  I kept a list of every app and contact that I wanted to affect, so i reconfigured their notification tones one by one.

I'm a hiker (and sometimes a cyclist).  And if I want to check my device, that will break my pace by having to handle and use the device.  So, what I need is the voice of the computer... and it's me.


Log 2015021101

I just sent an e-mail to the United States Post Office (USPS) asking them about shipping water.


Log 2015020901

I continued writing the Continuous Short Hikes 2015 document today when I finished with the south of the Buckeye Trail.  The American Discovery Trail - North Midwest Route (ADT - NMR) was omitted in the 2013 edition and that's being corrected.  The Continuous Short Hikes are routed generally at 10 miles per day with a 2.5 mile additional reserve.  And for the standard 20 mile per day hikers, they'll make it from the campground at Hueston Woods State Park near Oxford of Butler County to the Greyhound stop in Richmond, Indiana.  But I wasn't sure about it's measurement.

Since this is the part of the ADT - NMR that I'm most in question with, I started considering different options for the 10 milers.  The campground is in Preble County, whose transit only caters to residents only as per their web page, they can not be included in the Continuous Short Hikes document or Ohio Transit Hiker's Resource's (OTHR) guide.  But the nearby Union County Transit Service in Indiana can.  The problem lies in that the course of the ADT - NMR is fixed and so is the state and county line.  The 10 milers have to reach the amenity in 2.5 miles or "the shows over."  The problem is that they can make it from the ADT to the Union County, Indiana at Stateline Road line in 2.4 miles.

But if I understand transit like I think I might, only half of Stateline Road is in Union County (and the State of Indiana for that matter).  There isn't anywhere on the Indiana side for the transit vehicle to turn around and 10 mile transit hikers would have to board and disembark there on the roadside. According to my discriminator for the 10 milers, the distance between Hueston Woods and Boston, Indiana is too far.  Otherwise, it would be closer to the Union County Line and better roads within the state.

 But ADT's got a 3.1 mile widow of execution before continuous short hikers won't benefit from it, or With the trail being where it is, transit being fixed to it's zone and a road without public amenities whose centerline runs through two states, I'd say that at this time I'm not going to route the Union County Transit Service in the OTHR's 2015 Edition of the Continuous Short Hikes.  Consequently, that means that this document can only route these transit hikers as far north as the archery range parking area in Hueston Woods SP.  Since the ADT - NMR is off-road here, this area is the last place that a transit vehicle can reach hikers in Butler County before the trail crosses into Preble County.

The continuous short hikes can pertain to those who don't want to hike as far, the elderly, those with certain disabilities, but most of all it is designed and intended for entry level hikers.  In order to be a circuit hiker on the Buckeye Trail and thru hike it's 1,444 mile route in under 110 total days, one needs enough stamina to be able to hike 20 miles in one day in its west, north and east.  However, this is about continuous short hikers and these maps come psychological factors.  OTHR and myself argue that hikers need to have enough stamina to perform at generally 10 miles a day if they're intention is to complete BT's maps, which cover areas 45 to 62 miles long.  Otherwise, they may risk getting discouraged.  The American Discovery Trail runs concurrent with the Buckeye for about 580 miles in its south, but it's used as the basis.  ADT breaks concurrency in Cincinnati and is routed alone on and off road towards Chicago by way of Hueston Woods SP and Richmond, Indiana.


Log 2015020701

Currently still, I'm the trail adopter for the Norwalk Section - Buckeye Trail between US-250 and OH-58.  So, when it comes to the annual Winter Hike at Findley State Park (which is on OH-58 and BT's Medina Section is routed off-road there), I'm the guy next door.  You can see Findley's reclaimed forest from my east terminator, about   And until today, I've missed this event every year since I became a maintainer in November of 2010.  Well, I've been feeling pretty guilty about that.

I had trouble sleeping last night and when my alarm went off, I touched the "off" button instead of the "snooze" and fell back asleep. Then I woke up late and had to stop by Dunkin Donuts so I could be an "agreeable" person when I got to the park. They didn't have the double chocolate donut that I really like.  That donut is a part of my pattern.

Well, I got to the picnic shelter at Findley State Park about an hour late.  Then I had to get a few things out of the tailgate and fix my YakTrax to my boots.  That took another 1/2 hour.  I was lucky to enter the course and earn my patch.  I've bought it a few years ago and after missing the event a few times, I was just keeping it was just keeping it warm (I guess).  Now, it's ready to sew on.


Log 2009122201

(This is transcribed log from a spiral bound notepad dated: December 22nd, 2009. At this point, I had only been active, day hiking the Buckeye Trail for the previous 53 days)

I am on a journey.  4am, I departed Painesville for Camp Asbury to continue on the Burton Section northbound.  There were places, because of snow, that I almost didn't make it up.

In Burton, I had traditional American cuisine @ Cogan's Restaurant.  28 miles later, I looped back on OH-700 but had doubts.  Water seeped in old boots on Mile 2.  So on Mile 17, new, unbroken-in boots were changed into.  I pulled into Hiram College to take a snooze.  The people there very kind.  3 miles to the car @ Asbury.  I'll have to muster everything that I have left just to make it.

Log 2015020301

The following are a list of notes taken while hiking.  Their date is unknown.

Trail Angels

Janitors at Johnson Hall of Hiram College on loop 27 mile loop of Burton Section gave me hot chocolate and power bars on my departure from the building.

[what happened here was it was late and this hike was more than I could handle (I bit off more than I could chew), so I stopped in Johnson Hall to get a few hours sleep and continue the 4 miles to my car afterwards]


He approached me about making it big some day
And I said man, I'll stay right where I am
Cause there ain't nothing wrong with a coffee shop & my guitar
I never had an audience to begin with

Oh well,
It ain't too far to getting lonesome
I've been down this road before


Once upon a time there was a woman
And she gave me a sense of purpose
She put the pep in my step
She was the reason I lived
Then she kicked me in the behind


I came to the land as the Forsaken Route
But it knew me long before I...
ever had a chance to choose who I was


Hiker Mile/ Feet Conversion Table

1.0mi: 5,280ft
9/10 : 4,752ft
8/10 : 4,224ft or 4/5mi
7/10 : 3,696ft
6/10 : 3,168ft or 3/5mi
5/10 : 2.640ft or 1/2mi
4/10 : 2,112ft or 2/5mi
3/10 : 1,584ft
2/10 : 1,056ft or 1/5mi
1/10 : 528ft

2/3  : 3,520ft
3/4  : 3,960ft