360. Ashland, Clark County (KS001)

Oh, Kansas!

When I got to town, I was a little frazzled and frustrated. Part of it was because I didn’t get the nice little voice on my phone saying “Welcome to Kansas.” The other part (which probably caused the first, to be honest) was having to drive the crazy, BFE (Beyond Freakin’ Egypt, for those not “hip” to the lingo) back road to get here. And I’m not being euphemistic here. I have a technical definition for BFE: any road where livestock is visible and the road is not striped. Driving that red rock road, looking at the herds of cows, definitely qualified. And all that to reach a courthouse I wasn’t especially impressed with.

Any disenchantment I may have felt about this courthouse went up in smoke once I started looking at this map on the front. This I like. I don’t remember seeing any other such maps anywhere else, though I haven’t gone back in the archive to be absolutely sure. I think I’d remember something like that, so I’m going to trust my gut and say this is all new to me. I wondered if this would be a continuing motif for Kansas. If so, that would augur well for my journey from a courthouse perspective. Or maybe not. Let’s face it, this courthouse isn’t all that inspiring.

Uncharacteristically, I decided to do a multi for my cache, partially because the start was at the courthouse and the clues were gleaned from the map I so adored, partially because it was the only physical cache in town. It led to this park, to a bench. I examined the bench, but no cache. After attempting to tear my hair out for a minute before realizing I didn’t have enough to do so, my next thought was to DNF it, but looking through the logs, I noticed that a number of other finders had done so, but the CO kept saying it was there. I took a bit of a gamble (though not much of one since I had already sunk cost into this) and decided to try another bench. Lo and behold, there it was! I was the first person in three years to find it! And no wonder it wasn’t being found! The coords led to a bench, but the proper bench was about 100 feet away. I signed, returned and logged it, noting to future cachers to try the other bench. This is a perfect example of why I don’t usually like to fiddle with multis when I’m on the road. But it was completed satisfactorily, so go Me, I rule. On the way out town, I snagged the other cache in town, a virtual. In this case “snagged” means got all the salient bits about it because I was saving it to log after, well, you know… Turns out that I forgot all about it so I’ve got a virtual to log for a rainy day. Not likely, though. I probably logged it long before any of you have read this so whatever. I headed out of town, a new souvenir under my belt, ready for a rendezvous with the old west (despite ones I’ve already had) once I reached…

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