5 B

NGS PID:
LY1479
Coordinates:
N 41.075696° W 75.958872°
Location:
Elevation:
1631.27 ft.
Type:
Bench Mark Disk
Setting:
Bridge Abutment
Year Established:
1942
Established By:
USGS
Status:
Recovered
Condition:
Good as of May 26, 2015
  • Official Description: NGS Datasheet
  • Geocaching.com Benchmark Page: 5 B
  • Official USGS Description:

    Albert Corners, 3.7 mi SW. and S. of, along tarvia rd.; about 12 ft S. of and 12 ft higher than rd.; in W. end of concrete abutment of abandoned RR. overpass; standard tablet stamped "3 B 1942 1632"

The Death Hike at the end of May each year gives me a good opportunity to look for marks near Hazleton. It didn't take long, though, before I had already found most of the local marks or confirmed that they are gone. But this year brought many changes to the Death Hike, and with them came the opportunity to search for marks in a new area.

Due to some unfortunate circumstances in Hazleton, the Monks family moved to a new townhouse in a development northeast of Drums. I saw an interesting BM on the topo map along my route to their new house. The description mentioned an abutment, which I thought I could see on Google's Street View. It was even more exciting when I realized that the old railroad abutment used to carry the Wilkes-Barre & Hazleton railway, an electric interurban that I've been researching, over the road!

I woke up earlier than usual on Death Hike day, leaving plenty of time to search for 5 B. The abutment was easy to find and just slightly tougher to climb, being thickly overgrown with ferns (not a problem) and thorny vines (nasty). The bright blue disk was easy to spot and perfectly clear of debris. When I began to take photos of the mark, I noticed a discrepancy in the stamping. The mark is actually stamped 3 B, not 5 B. At the time I wasn't sure if the error was in the stamping or on the datasheet. When I checked the USGS datasheets later in the evening, I found that the intended designation of the mark is 3 B (5 B is a few miles south-southwest in Drums), so the NGS datasheet is in error. A gouge on the disk over the character in question explains the ambiguity. It really is difficult to tell if the character is a 3 or a 5.

For the sake of continuity with the NGS database, I'm using the NGS designation 5 B for this mark even though it is technically in error.

A report on the condition of this survey mark has been submitted to NGS, along with the following recovery note:

Recovered in good condition. However, the NGS datasheet is in error regarding the designation and stamping. The disk is actually stamped 3 B and its USGS designation is noted as 3 B in the original USGS description. A USGS bench mark disk designated 5 B was set on this line but its location is in Drums, approximately 4.4 miles south-southwest of 3 B.

Handheld GPS coordinates for the bench mark are 41 04 32.5(N) 075 57 31.9(W).

USGS Bench Mark Disk 5 B (actually 3 B)
USGS Bench Mark Disk 5 B (actually 3 B)
Eyelevel view of the disk on the abutment.
Eyelevel view of the disk on the abutment.
Looking E toward South Main Road
Looking E toward South Main Road