Sun - August 26, 2007

10 Mile River Race in 60 Seconds - Thunderbolt Kayak in the Glenwood Canyon

Colorado River in Glenwood Canyon Colorado River in Glenwood Canyon JKK Supernova multisport ocean racing kayak

10 miles
in 60 seconds
Colorado River Race
in Glenwood Canyon

kayaking Colorado River

kayak racing in Colorado

Suction Cup
Camera Mounts
from Sticky Pod

Colorado River in Glenwood Canyon

I was rather busy paddling my Thunderbolt kayak during the recent Colorado River Race in Glenwood Canyon. Nevertheless, I shot 180 pictures with Pentax Optio W10 camera and, now, you can follow the 10 mile race in just 60 seconds.

1. The camera was mounted on a deck of the Thunderbolt kayak. I used a camera mount based on three suction cups from the Sticky Pod together with a short extension and two knuckles.

2. The camera was set in an interval mode: a picture every 30 seconds up to 180 pictures. I did not have time to test this setup before the race. I started a frame sequence a minute or two before the start. I paddled 10 miles in 1 hour and 8 minutes, so I had several shots left when cooling down at the finish and carrying the kayak to the shore.

3. The frames were assembled into a video clip without any adjustments. I only removed some repeating frames from the finish. Most pictures came OK, only a couple were blurry, a few were affected by direct sun despite that fact that the race was in the morning and we paddled west. I need to use something to protect lens against the sun.

4. I was getting a lot of splashes in rapids. You can see some water drops after the first rapid, but, generally, I didn't have problems with water on the lens. The camera was shifted a little bit in high standing waves of the second rapid.

5. The river looks pretty empty in my animation. However, I run five rapids and passed 7 boats. There was a staggered start with slower canoes going first and the three fast kayaks starting as last ones.

6. I should shoot pictures every 10 seconds instead of 30s. 10 seconds is the lower limit in the interval model. My speed during the race was close to 9 mph, so, in average, I traveled about 360 feet between shots. I am sure that my speed was much higher in all river drops where the action was more interesting. I had enough memory - I can store about 800 full resolution pictures (2816x2112) in 2 Gb memory card. On the other hand, I could store only about 30 minutes of video, not enough to cover the race.

7. You can compare my animated video clip to the short movie I shot in Glenwood Canyon in September of 2006 around the second rapid. The animated sequence of frames provides a good overview of the entire 10 mile race course. Of course, the higher sampling frequency would allow us to better see the rapids.

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