Solo 6th Degree Homogeneous Fields in St. George, Utah (Operation Six Layer Bean Dip)
I’ve been contemplating a solo 6th degree homogeneous field in southern Utah for quite some time. Drawing up a plan, however, was a challenge.
The town where I live, St. George, Utah, has clusters of portals but it also has several areas where something like a large undeveloped mesa, or a large subdivision completely devoid of parks, or the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area just north of town, severely limits the number of portals in a rather wide area.
I rotated the fields, tried shifting the location, moving the baseline, but most of the time, I’d get stuck on that sixth layer and set the plan aside, fully intending to work on the plan again someday soon.
I had planned to finally take a shot at building the fields over spring break this year. My wife and son were going to be out of town and I would have a whole week without family obligations to get it done.
Then the COVID crisis came and wrecked those plans. No spring break vacation for the wife and boy, and Stay at Home rules were enacted.
Luckily, Utah’s "Stay Home Stay Safe” orders have been fairly relaxed compared to elsewhere in the United States and around the world.
After the changes to the portal network were made, basically placing a very rare heat sink and multi-hack on every portal, I thought a 6th degree field might be a good way to spend a weekend.
I could do most of the fielding from my car, and what few portals required me to leave the vehicle in my plan, were all parks or hikes that would easily allow appropriate social distancing.
The other main challenge was the blue links that needed to come down. I live in an area dominated by the Resistance and there are a few of my fellow blue agents who live by the motto, “if it shows, it throws.” So there are always random links that need a Jarvis anytime a fielding plan is in action.
So my first step was to throw the footprint of the 6th degree field a week early to prevent any more linking from taking place. I then got some help with clearing the blue blockers from my good friends @Glenuendo and @Moose1204 and used quite a few Jarvis myself. Both @Moose1204 and @Glenuendo were also kind enough to visit a number of portals and add the needed SBULs for the throw.
I also threw one small section of the fields during the week because one portal in the plan is in a gated community that could have presented a challenge as far as access during the weekend and I wanted to take no chances.
An Enlightened agent actually saved me a Jarvis by taking down the overlaying fields the night before my scheduled throw. (Thanks @manipens!)
I was up and throwing before 5am on Saturday and by midday had the 5th degree built. I had hoped things would go bit faster but I severely underestimated the travel time I would need to cover the distances involved in my fields.
With family obligations looming Saturday afternoon, I decided I’d have to throw the outer layer again and see if I could finish it the next morning.
Luckily, the fields were undisturbed overnight and I began again at 5am Sunday.
Again, the day went smoothly and it looked like I might finish by mid-morning. I was in place to throw the final layers and started linking from the third anchor when I quickly realized two things. The first was, I had linked to the wrong gazebo in the park that contained one of the final links. The second was that I had the link order listed incorrectly in my plans.
So I rewrote the link order, used a few Jarvis, fixed my gazebo gaff and headed back out to my third anchor, which is at the end of about a 4km drive on rather rutted and bumpy dirt road.
And I began throwing the final layers again. This time, I got about halfway through the throw and realized I was missing keys. I had been key farming as I went along and had missed getting enough keys at two or three portals.
So I drove back into town, gathered more keys and again headed back out to the third anchor.
And this time, I completed the fields.
I really hate to admit that I spent a total of about 18 and a half hours putting up this monster of a field. But the two extra trips out to the third anchor and fixing my mistakes all told added about 4 hours to my throw time.
The good news is, the fields stayed up for several days. I threw the final link at 14:47 on Sunday, April 26 and all six degrees remained intact until 21:05 on Thursday, April 30. So the fields were up for a total of 102 hours and 18 minutes.
Thanks again to the Resistance agents who helped, the Resistance agents who refrained from linking so I could complete the fields, and the Enlightened agents who inadvertently assisted and refrained from taking the field down for a few days.
Me at the third anchor, the Cove Wash Trailhead in the Santa Clara River Reserve.
The view of the Red Mountain in Ivins (left) and Pine Valley Mountain from the Cove Wash Trailhead. Not a bad spot to enjoy while throwing the final layers of a 6th degree field.
Scanner view at Cove Wash.
Mobile intel view of the finished product.
Scanner view at the central portal.
The fields with the links off gives you a much better view of the homogeneous aspect of the fields.Six layers throughout!
That was so fun to watch come together.
Nice! Probably first blue solo L6 HCF in North America! Congratulation, awesome work!
Simply wonderful in its complexity