We've enjoyed craft beer and home brewing during our travels. It's always cool seeing new places and try things unique to an area. We managed to visit a few breweries on our recent trip to Atlanta. We even snuck in a trip to Fullsteam when we were passing through Durham (after seeing them on a recent Brew Dogs TV show.)
I wrapped up a portfolio for Katy who is Miss Pennsylvania Plus America and moving on to the national competition. Wish her the best of luck.
Saw this in Road Runner Travel magazine and think this would be exciting. I hate heights but I think I'd be able to man up and do this: http://www.bridgewalk.com/
Ride would meander through the gorgeous roads of West Virginia and end somewhere around here. Hotel or possibly camping lodging is available for the overnight.
Ride to Victor, WV
Find hotel (or camping if people prefer).
Get up and do the Bridgewalk
Tour Dates: Daily*
Length: 2-3 Hours
Distance: 1.25 miles
Reservations Required: Yes Call: 1-304-574-1300
After, we head part of the way home through interesting route (tbd)
Find lodging mid-way home.
Ride rest of way home.
So Who's In? Comment below.
I'm starting a new category on this blog. I want to capture some proposed motorcycle routes that I hope to take... interest some others to join me... and remind myself of where I want to go. Each trip will include something interesting to see or photography.
This route includes a stop at Round Guys Brewing and Weyerbacher because I'd love to visit both places and can connect them in a loop. I've done the starting out portion when riding to biker breakfast in Ephrata and the last portion when riding the Schuylkill Haven poke runs and love those two portions. Lots of country roads with relaxing scenic landscapes.
Comment if you'd like to join me. This one may happen in July 2014?
Well, it's not "here" here... but it's announced. Hopefully it will be "here" in my hands soon. I've been eyeing up the Fuji X series for a while and I think that X-T1 is the one to get. As with most of the Fuji series, the sensor seems the same pretty much across the board. Processing is likely to be similar. Early reports sound like focusing is quick and doesn't suffer like some of the other cameras have.
I like the WiFi capable... I love the retro look. And I'm REALLY impressed that they weather sealed the body. THAT is rather attractive to me as I've been thinking that the mood of poor weather is excellent and conveying emotion. It's just a pain in the butt to do with with a traditional "exposed" DSLR. Sure, I'll need to weatherproof the lens till Fuji gets their weather sealed ones to market, but that seems easier to do then the body and controls.
Looking forward to seeing and hearing about this cam. I'll be curious to see if this was the rumored X-Pro2 that was supposed to come out this year?
Read a review of the Fuji X-T1
Little video post from some old SAMBA group ride footage. Fun group to ride with. Good people. Good trails. Good times.
My son took control of the GoPro video duties for the Color Run in Baltimore that my wife had run with some friends while I focused on shooting photos for them. I had him sit down with me during the edit and guided him through it, but he made most of the edit choices. I think he did a pretty solid job! Hopefully it conveys the fun of the event.
The Cranksgiving bicycle race was incredible. Competitive, fun, joking around and for a good cause: all the ingredients to make you feel good about the day. We had a blast and can't wait to do more of these event!
Enjoy the GoPro footage!
I'm a big fan of the voice this year. The talent is amazing and probably a little more selfishly, one of the contestants is someone who modeled for us at the RalieghLypse istock event about a year ago. I had the good fortune of meeting Kat at that event.
While watching the show tonight, I took a moment to revisit what I may have "left on the cutting room floor". Thanks again Kat... It was great to meet you and Guillaume. You guys are a great couple. All the best! Hope you win.
"Riding on my mind" - Playing with an idea I'm working on... Thought I'd share the idea because I will likely be enlisting the help of some local friends to collaborate on this. Hit me up if you like where this is headed and want to help.
<shouts> Adventure Time!!! </shouts>
Just like the cartoon, I shouted this under my helmet as I headed out on a photo-moto-camping trip this past weekend. I've gotten the bug to do some touring after watching Long Way Round/Down and Neale Bayly Rides and reading a few moto touring books/blogs. Now I realize the 1978 Gold Wing isn't exactly an adventure touring bike, but it's also not like I live in an exotic locale like Mongolia, Kenya or Peru. (or so I thought.)
My buddy Kyle had his own adventure earlier this spring and blogged about it at fairingeast.wordpress.com. Him and his friend flew to his sister's house, got on Craigslist and picked up two older Gold Wings and couch-surfed/camped their way across the country home. I excitedly followed his journey and wished for my own. I'd taken a few day rides but didn't want to push my bike too far earlier this year because of some tech problems that were unresolved. After it was straightened out, I posted about wanting to go explore and Kyle chimes in, "I still have the bike and missing the open road. Let's do it." With that, the plan was underway.
In a few short weeks, I'd picked my Dad's brain for a good route to take. Exchanged a few emails of possible sites along the way and each plotted a Google Maps route. Most of this planning would shortly get thrown out the window. LOL.
Packing for a motorcycle trip is a bit different than a normal camping trip. While I always say that I'm taking too much, nothing shines a light on how little you can take until you have to strap it to the back of a motorcycle. I'm sure this what the backpackers deal with every time. With my minimal supplies strapped down I was ready to go (later realizing, that a few more supplies might be in order... luckily I was camping with a former Boy Scout. Motto: Be Prepared). As I was waiting for Kyle to meet up, I get a text message. "Bike won't start... Gonna find a bigger hill to push start it." Oh no. After a few fits, he got it running and said he'd be over and we are still on (unless it doesn't start back up at my house.) I admire his confidence in his ride and luckily, it kept churning along the rest of the weekend.
Fueled up, we get underway. A little behind our projected schedule. Fortunately, we had nowhere to be at an appointed time (aside from the gate closing on our reserved campsite in Elkins). This was going to be a little closer than we'd like. JUST outside of town, I feel something banging against my leg. I look down and there is my side cover flopping on my shin. The expoxied mount had finally come loose after all these years. So, we quickly pulled off the highway into a Rite Aid parking lot. This was more of a whim and first place I saw... (and all right turns so I could hold the cover tight with my left shin.) but it ended up being a smart move because they sell SuperGlue. After securing the bracket that came loose (but didn't fall off), it was time to put it back on. Trouble is, now that it's secured, it wont' fit past the seat. After removing the seat, I was able to get the cover back on and we were on our way again. This time, REALLY behind schedule.
We made our way to the Tilted Kilt in Hagerstown for a tasty lunch and then picked up 81 down into Winchester and then onto our first WV routes... Rt. 50. This was a cool road and the further you went, the more remote it got. It was quickly apparent that West Virginia DOT does not know what a straight line is and god bless em. Roads were constantly turning and twisting and going up and down mountains. We stopped in Romney hoping to find a brew pub that Kyle had remembered visiting years ago on a rallye that had great cheap food. We drove by what was supposed to be the address. While we were stopped a few locals walked by and asked to help us. We soon found out that Lost River Brewing is like 30 miles in the opposite direction and not in the town that Google placed it's "approximate location". Ok, moving onward then!
Stopping at the first Scenic overlook was incredible. Kyle shouted from under his helmet "THAT road was awesome." I agreed. I especially loved the sections that appeared they COULD have made them straight, but they resisted the urge and added a few extra "S" turns.
Our rest stops were getting shorter as we pushed on for Elkins. We journeyed into Thomas where we had another destination to visit. Mountain State Brew Pub. Thomas turns out is a small little town that is two 1 way streets cut into a slope. Aged shoppes with great names like the Flying Pig Breakfest and Lunchery, Purple Fiddle and Pickel Patch gave the town a vintage feel. We headed out of town looking for our destination and quickly found it at the top of the mountain (luckily, cell reception wasn't COMPLETELY dead... yet).
At Mountain State Brewing, we chatted with the bartender and a few locals curious about our trip. We told them we hoped to hit Elkins and they cautioned us about the setting sun, running dear... etc. "So where is a good place around here to camp", Kyle asked. "Camp 70... Head down to Davis. At the Shop and Save, go around back and there is a dirt road. cross the bridge and follow that about 2 miles and you'll hit a few camp sites. Just pitch a tent there. It's free." Sweet. I wasn't convinced it wasn't just a ploy to more easily attack us while we slept. But turns out the people in WV were probably some of the nicest people I've met in a long time!
We set up camp and head back into Davis (which was about 2 blocks smaller than Thomas... and that wasn't big to begin with.) We found 1 place open, Hellbender Burritos. Had a little bite to eat and headed back to camp. The West Virginia sky was just amazing. You could see millions of stars since there were no nearby city lights on the horizon. A complete darkness just fell all around. It was incredible. While I've camped almost a dozen times just this year, I still feel a bit of noob at times. Maybe it was the "remoteness" of it all, but it's amazing the stuff you hear when you can't hear the normal things... like traffic noise. Of all the animals you'd expect to hear in the woods, foxes are not a favorite (they sound like a woman or child screaming in pain.)
We awoke to a slightly damp tent from the overnight rain (good call on the rain flys), packed our gear and headed back into Thomas to hopefully find a place to eat. The Flying Pig Breakfest and Lunchery was our stop and had a great home cooked (and cheap) breakfest. We rerouted our Sunday at this point because we didn't quite end up where we wanted to be. We elected to adopt Kyle's route that he had originally mapped out but not before we made a quick detour for Rt. 72. This was a spasdic light line scribble on the map that was too tempting to resist. We both agreed, that has to be interesting. And as we made the turn onto the road, we quickly found out we were right. A large yellow sign greeted us telling us that for the next 15 miles, the road narrows, steep hills, tight turns and trucks were forbidden. Definately interesting!
Rt. 72 turned out to be a mostly farm road that wound it's way through Canann valley. I'm kicking myself for not stopping at the one far field that was situated dead in the center of a few mountain ranges with a field of horses out front. NEXT trip! The road lived up to it's expectation. You had to stay on your toes for on-coming traffic, gravel, steep drops and washed away road sections that instead of fixing them, they just put a caution sign up.
Back on a main route, we picked up pace and headed to Seneca Rocks for a stop at a general store and checking out the climbing supplies and tours. If I were a rock climber, this would be the place to visit. Very cool. As the day was getting away from us, we decided to hammer for home to meet up with the Sunday social crowd in Harrisburg, but not before we wound our way through more mountain passes on our way back to civilization. As we pull into a McDonalds to sort our route on our "old school GPS", we note that we are headed to Wardensville. Kyle mentions, "I think that's where that restaurant that wasn't in Romney is." Sure enough, it was. Kyle was able to revisit a stop he made on a road rallye previously. My how things change. Gone was the little greasy spoon with elCheapo food and drinks. It had morphed into a quaint little boutique brewpub that served up a mean pulled pork sandwich and served up a Wit PA (now called Harvest) with locally grown cascade hops. [fun fact: WV does not serve beer until 1pm on Sunday]
The ride up Rt. 81 was pretty uneventful but in contrast to all the twists and turns we had encountered for the last day, it was nice to just open up the throttle and pound out some miles. Stopping a few times to stretch the legs, we soon found ourselves "back in the burg" just in time to meet up with some friends.
With the trip a few days behind me now, I am more excited for the next one. I think my enthusiasm has gotten a little infectious. My youngest son asked if I was taking another trip with Kyle again soon because he'd like to go. In his defense, it's only because he wants to camp more often and it's less about the bike trip. Maybe we will find a short trip close by and give it a whirl.
- Next trip I will be a little more prepared with what I pack.
- Next trip I hope to make it at least two overnights.
- Next trip I'd "like" to have an adventure touring bike (instead of the cruiser touring bike I'd been drooling over) and add some "off road" to the trip.
- Next trip I will take more pictures.
- Next trip I will vary my GoPro mounts so I have more then one angle.
- Next trip I will take a paper map and not rely on my iphone map.
A little video I made with the GoPro in Timelapse mode using the new GoPro Studio. Liking how easy and quick it is. Now I need to remember to vary up my mounting locations!
Truer words were never spoken about a photoshoot. I heard this on episode 104 of The Grid podcast with guest Peter Hurley. I love a photo critique episode and I really appreciated that the audience seemed to take exception with some of Peter's comments. But he was spot on. Expression and emotion of a photo will always trump technical perfection.
RC chimed in with an old standby quote that I believe is attributed to Jay Maysel (but it's possible i'm wrong), "There is nothing worse than a sharp photo of a fuzzy idea." And that is absolutely true. Art (& Photography) should say something.
I was curious how my photos would hold up to this critique. So I reviewed my portfolio at the top of this site. I think my images would hold up to the scrutiny. And the more Peter spoke, the more I realized I share a lot of the same ideas... if not outwardly consciously about it. On my shoots, I like to have fun. When he said that, It struck me how many photographers on our podcast (LightSource, on a long hiatus... lol) said just that.
If you can't get the person in front of the lens to connect with the person behind the lens... they won't connect with the person looking at the photo.
Forget technical excellence... Just make more interesting stuff. ;-)
Enjoying using the GoPro Hero3. Now have the Micover wind screen protector added to it for better wind noise cut. It does a pretty descent job of it. Looking forward to taking it out mountain biking.
While we prepare for our family's Boy Scout troop ride coming up, we have been riding much more. So, we headed out on a little tour of the Lebanon Valley Rails to Trails starting in Colebrook and riding through Gretna and back. As usually, we ran the GoPro cameras again. These are a few snaps from the photo mode segment. I'll put together a video from the various rides in a little.