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Kentucky Color: Confluence to Confluence

By Billy Joe Fudge

Linda's picture of the confluence of Little Renox and Big Renox Creeks got me to thinking about a 50 year old question that has never been answered, even once.

My entry level job with Kentucky Division of Forestry was as the Adair County Ranger. Joe Johnson was our Seasonal Ranger/Fire Plow Operator. Back in the days before we had airplane coverage to find wildfires, spotters in fire towers would see smokes and we Rangers would have to find them to ascertain whether they were legal burning, illegal burning or wildfires.

Often we would be fairly close to the smoke and would stop to ask a local resident if they knew how far away the fire might be so we could figure out which road or pig path might get us to it.

The initial reply would frequently be, "well as the crow flies it is half mile, quarter mile, etc." Joe's next question would always be, "how far is it if you have to walk and carry a heavy suitcase!" It would almost always elicit a strange look from each local resident.

At any rate, Linda said that the confluence of Big and Little Renox was "not far from the Cumberland River" which got me to wondering just how far it might be by Joe's metrics. As you can see in the picture, as the crow flies from the confluence of Big and Little Renox (red pin) to the confluence of Big Renox and the Cumberland River (blue pin) is 937.3 feet. After doing measurements of walking along the bank of Big Renox from its confluence with Little Renox to Cumberland River while carrying a heavy suitcase would be 1041.9 feet!

Joe's question has now been answered, at least once!

This story was posted on 2023-01-26 12:37:13
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Kentucky Color: Confluence to Confluence

2023-01-26 - Kentucky - Photo from Billy Joe Fudge.
Billy Joe consults the USGS to answer Joe Johnson's age-old question, "how far is it if you have to walk and carry a heavy suitcase?" as it relates to the confluence of the Little Renox and Big Renox Creeks and the Cumberland River.

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