Monday, March 9, 2009

Videos (HelmetCam) - Last 2 Days on bikes

Just a few more clips... (since they're SO much faster to upload here at home)

Here's a nice short example of why the video was getting so fuzzy by the end of the trip. I rode in a dust haze a fair bit at the back of the pack. I just opened the camera up today to blow out the dust - wow! Almost surprised it still worked at all. There's something to be said for no moving parts...

Here's another reason - dust sticks worse when the lens is wet... it's hard to keep the water from splashing to head/camera height (even going as slow as I dared in a sand/silt bottom river). I tried standing up, which helped, but I had also cracked my right boot, so I sat on this one and lifted my feet in an attempt to reduce the water in my boot - got wet anyway, as it turns out.

On the last day, we missed our turnoff (of course) from Santo Domingo on our way to Mike's Sky Rancho (looked more like a driveway/side road, and went basically straight up several hundred feet of mountainside). In the process we followed the first road out of town down a valley with a creek in it, and crossed it half a dozen times before discovering our error in the face of locked ranch gates, so we got to do them all in reverse. We then had a lot of smaller crossing throughout the rest of the day's ride, so we saw more water this last day than the rest of the trip combined. The pit of dispair didn't look so bad after all this, but it also helped that this flowing water was transparent and you could see how deep most of it was.

Livestock was also a constant in riding through back-country/ranch land, and even main roads like Mex. 1 (especially at night). These cattle in the north were much less emaciated than the nearly walking skeletons we saw in parts of the southern deserts.

I have a thing for cliff-side vistas. Too bad the helmet cam is so gritty - doesn't even begin to do this countryside justice. (This one's for you, mum)

Even standing up the roads were often rougher than they look in the videos. This was a pretty nice one, especially considering how steep a decent into the valley it was (the steep ones often wash out badly since it's the easiest/fastest way for rains to get to lower ground).

What a day! I wish I had recorded some of the gnarlier sections - they were as challenging as anything on the trip, though mercifully shorter, since we were already behind schedule. Next time I'm taking more video/pictures in the rough spots, even when we're against the clock. :-)

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