Adventuring in California – The Center

Three important things I was reminded of today

1) Spontaneous random adventures are refreshing

2) Directions to locations get exponentially more difficult the further from civilization one travels.

2) Trust your instincts.

Today I ventured to the geographic center of California which is located about 7 miles outside the town of North Fork.  North Fork is located northeast of Madera at the edge of the Sierra National Forest.  The exact coordinates of California’s center are 37°09′58″N 119°26′58″W but those won’t necessarily get you there because the location is out of satellite range, or at least the range of service for my iPhone; which is where the “trust your instincts” reminder comes in.

Google Maps via my iPhone did a fine job of getting me to North Fork, though there was a tricky intersection off of 99 in Madera, which is a place that knows how to welcome people.

0001Google Maps even got me mostly to my intended destination. I say mostly because service cut out once I turned on to a rural road that barely deserves the designation of paved.  As I wound my way further and further down said road that looked like this

0004 0003

I became increasingly concerned because the road was windy, primitive, and dotted with the occasional abandoned vehicle.  I thought I had driven too far, made a wrong turn, or just plain passed my destination.  Just as I was about to do a 180 and retrace my tracks this came into view

0005

 

“Phew!” I thought, “Only six tenths of a mile to go….UH-OH, it’s in….

0006

…that bears house could use some work.”

Sure enough a short while later through a narrow cat with a cattle guard I came upon my goal and all was right with the world.

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