The comic ran a while ago as, well, a joke, but as I discovered recently, people are actually doing it! There’s even a wiki keeping track of everything.
Something about the idea just fascinated me, when I heard of it yesterday– the idea that you’ll be headed to a totally unpredictable place, which could be anything, just for the sake of an adventure. So, naturally, when I saw that today’s hashpoint was nearby, I absolutely had to go.
Here’s the writeup I put on the wiki, slightly edited for style (I can do that because I’m quoting myself), now with pictures.
The first 30 of the expected 35 minute drive were pretty but uneventful. There was a moment of concern, as eloriane’s GPS steered her towards a lake, but there was a bridge (terrifying, as it was one lane, but usable) and the trip proceeded smoothly.
Until suddenly, the road stopped. At a cliff.
Not to be deterred easily, eloriane pulled over at the nearest opportunity (not particularly near, as this very rural area had no curbs) and, carrying her GPS, walked back to the hashpoint. Or attempted to, anyway. Unfortunately, the cliff was still distinctly cliff-y even when approached on foot, and eloriane had foolishly worn sandals.
eloriane walked back to her car, hanging her head in defeat.
Except! As she walked back, she spied a path, which probably hadn’t been used in years but which distinctly bore evidence of car traffic.
Saved! She drove back to this spot (nearly missing it, it was so overgrown) and headed down its gentler slope. It had been unused for so long, plants had grown in the middle of the “road” but they appeared to spring back up again even after being driven over, so eloriane believes (hopes) she did no damage to the wildlife.
The old little road dead-ended among a lot of trees, but eloriane declared it close enough and a valiant effort.
Time to go home. She shifted to reverse, and…was stuck. As she executed her 42-point turn, she contemplated calling the police, her mother, and Randall Munroe for assistance, wondering how she could possibly explain where she was and wincing as her car made unhappy grinding and thumping noises.
All’s well that ends well, however, and the car was eventually turned around enough to make the drive up the steep, muddy hill possible, and eloriane made it home in time for supper.
It turns out that someone else had also gone to the hashpoint today, but I didn’t see her. She doesn’t have an email address on the wiki so I suppose I’ll just have to keep going to hashpoints to try to meet her. In future, I’ll bring a book and hang out longer to increase the odds.