Archive | Photos

Saved With Black & White?

Over the past two weeks, I made the 20-minute drive south to Alma, Michigan to shoots some photos at the Thursday Night Alma Mountain Bike Time Trial. For most of the first race I had some success, finding a spot in the woods with enough light to capture the action without getting too high in the ISO department. A week later I was not so lucky. I tried a different location and found myself fighting with the light (and the mosquitos) and shooting at a super high ISO. It felt like a huge waste of my time.

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A Wetland Walk

My son had to help out with a coaching clinic that his soccer club was putting on this past Saturday morning and I was in charge of getting him to and from. The complex is 45 minutes away from home and it didn’t make sense to make all those trips back in forth, so I figured I would just find a way to kill some of those four hours.

My plan was to drive down the road to the Chippewa Nature Center to hike around in the mist with my camera. The temperatures were nice and I got a few miles of hiking walking in before the rain got too steady and forced me to the car. The cooler summer temps and rain felt great, but it also made the mosquitos unbearable. I was covered from head to toe in layers of bug spray and still got a ton of bites.

I walked a little over three miles and despite taking a ton of photos I really didn’t feel like I came away with anything. In fact, as I was heading back towards my car, I passed a couple walking. They asked me if I got any good shots and I said: “No, nothing too good today.” Then later that day as I processed the photos I found myself thinking that I actually got some pretty good shots in just a couple of hours, in some less than ideal conditions.

Here is a look at some of the shots I got that morning as I enjoyed some forest bathing… I mean hiking in the woods.

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At The Races

As my love of photography (some might say picture taking) continues, this summer I have tried to get out and shoot some races. In some cases I did it to earn a few dollars, in other cases such as my recent trip down to Alma to shoot the low-key Thursday night MTB time trials, I did it for the practice and a want to help promote the series in which my LBS is one of the prime supporters. 

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Beard of Zeus Faves

The act of actually racing my bike gets further and further away from my mind, as the act of photographing races gets further and further a part of reality. With that in mind I drove up to Traverse City this past Saturday to shoot some photos at the 2017 Beard of Zeus race. The race was the Short’s Brewing Fat Bike Series finale, and the 90 minute cyclocross-like format really lends itself to moving around the course and catching the action in various locations.

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2017 Fat Bike Nationals

This past Saturday I drove down to Grand Rapids to watch and photograph the Men’s and Women’s Pro Fat Bike Nationals. Lucky for me the Pro races didn’t start until 11 AM so I had plenty of time to sleep in, eat breakfast, watch soccer, and drink numerous cups of coffee before making the hour and a half drive. Unlucky for the race, Grand Rapids was unusually void of snow. While the absence of snow on a January day in Grand Rapids was indeed odd, it sure made for some fast racing!

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Stress Rolling

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These are crazy times in America. In my life I never thought I’d see our country mirroring the movie Idiocracy so much, or be quite so divided.  There is a lot of stress and fear in the air, and it is almost impossible to hide from it. The very people who helped create the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election side-show, are now continuing with up to the minute ridiculousness of woeful cabinet selections, and protests alike. Social media outlets continue to be a caldron of hate from both sides of divided America making it nearly impossible to view them without coming away a little more depressed with the state of our nation. It’s never been a better time to get out for a ride, get lost in the woods amongst the critters and the trees, or just hang out on your porch with the birds.

The following are some shots taken on ride and hikes over the past week or so with either the Nikon D7100 or Fuji X-T1. Thanks for looking. And take my advice–turn off the TV, step away from Facebook and Twitter, and get outside. Then have a beer.

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Dryer

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Dry corn under dark autumn clouds. (Nikon D7100).

Last week I found myself out my bike in wet, rainy, and foggy conditions more than once. That was fun, and made for some interesting photos, but it also took toll on my drivetrain, and my mojo. The next few rides were void of mud and rain, with some intermittent clouds and sun, and despite some increased wind, I have to admit I was pretty stoked to be dry.

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In a Fog

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I had the chance to get some miles in on Thursday and ride in some of the thickest fog I’ve ever seen here in central Michigan. Rain the night before made for muddy conditions, so I used my fat bike to plow through the slop, thus saving my higher end drivetrains from the gritty dirt and gravel. I also utilized a the Porcelain Rocket DSLR Slinger bag to house my Fuji X-T1, and a rear blinky to make sure I didn’t get smashed down by any tractors.

The following is a collection of photos that I captured that day using the X-T1 with the 55-200 mm lens. Thanks for looking.

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Winter’s Ugliness

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As lovers of the outdoors, we like to think that all of our winter activities are done in pristine white snow. Rolling fat bike trails packed tight, or skiing on trails groomed to perfection. Sadly, that is not always the case in winter. Temperatures rise and fall, snow melts in the day, freezes overnight, and then sleet and rain falls to compound the mess. Trails become useless, snow becomes slush, and mud becomes deep–it’s quite unattractive, but still worth documenting in my opinion.

This past weekend I did a quick two-hour ride that had me rolling over a little bit of everything that winter in mid-Michigan could throw at me: ice, snow, mud, slush, water, gritty sand, and more mud.

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