Last week’s puzzle “featured” some geographic wordplay. No clear theme entries, but several named geographic features throughout the grid, in each case crossing an entry that started with the same letter and was followed by the type of feature. For example, CALVARY is a HILL that starts with C – or if you like, a “C-HILL” – and it crossed CHILL. Like so:
The letters at the crossings spelled out SLAKE, which, reparsed as “S-LAKE,” suggested the metapuzzle’s answer SUPERIOR, sitting there at 14-across.
Longtime Gaffney solvers may remember an old meta of his that heavily featured the “D-RIVER” pun seen here at 62-across. I can honestly say I did not consciously recall that puzzle during the construction of this one, though I’m sure it was somewhere in the recesses of my memory. In fact, this puzzle didn’t start out about geography at all – I was just trying to think of things starting with [letter] that could be crossed with a seemingly unrelated word of the form [letter + type of the thing], and after several geographic features made the list I realized I could make the whole thing more cohesive. Some good nongeographic ones had to be sacrificed though – my favorite was SPOONERISM / (S)WORDPLAY, though it would have been tough to fit a lot more theme around that crossing … Anyhow, as usual I must acknowledge Matt for providing inspiration, even if I wasn’t aware of it!
Up next is a puzzle whose title I struggled with. I settled on a long-winded mixed metaphor that … well, you’ll see:
The answer to the metapuzzle is a mathematical term. Submit you answer using the contact form by Monday, September 23 at 11 p.m. Pacific Time. I’ll post the solution, and a new puzzle, next Tuesday.