Wednesday, July 20, 2016

18 July - A Ride at Last

After some of the worst riding weather in a long time today promised to be a reasonably mild and most importantly, dry day. Joined my brother Luke (Kawasaki Vulcan S) on a roughly circular route through the Gippsland countryside. I rode the Beemer mainly because the Honda wouldn't start due to a flat battery after such a long period of inactivity. Our ride took us past Loy Yang Power Station and through Gormandale. After climbing Powers Hill we took a left turn toward the coast at Woodside. Very little traffic and mild conditions and an interesting road - it doesn't get any better than that. At Woodside we joined the South Gippsland Highway which in turn took us to Sale, but not before visiting the famous swing bridge on the Latrobe River. The high level of the river was a clear indicator of the amount of rain we've had in the past weeks. In Sale we enjoyed a nice lunch and coffee at a great bakery before climbing on our bikes again and then on to Maffra. By now it was becoming a bit overcast and the temperature was dropping but we drove on for a visit to the dam wall at Glenmaggie Weir. There seemed to be major release of irrigation water going on, we could hear the roar of the escaping water from some distance. Took a few photos before heading off on the last leg, for me anyway, back to Traralgon. Great to be back on the bike again especially with my brother.

Total Distance 215 km.

Friday, July 8, 2016

8 July - Walhalla Video

Since acquiring the Phantom 4 Drone I've been working on two challenges. How to edit the 4K video footage that comes out of the camera. and how to safely transport the system on a motorbike. The second issue is a work in progress but the editing issue is done and dusted. So for now I'll just post the video of our recent flight over Walhalla. Hope you enjoy it.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

2 July - Walhalla from the air

Spent the afternoon in Walhalla today but not on the motorbike. Last week I took delivery of my Phantom 4 Camera Drone and I felt confident enough (after three flights from my front lawn) to take it to Walhalla, a 19th century mining town near here, which I often visit on the bike (see my last post). The first stop was at the Thompson River Bridge to photograph the Goldfields tourist train, the only existing remnant of a line built 100 years ago to bring goods into and gold out of Walhalla, crossing the railway bridge.
Many of the passengers on the train had watched me prepare the Phantom for flight so as the train passed there was lots of waving and photos being taken. The video of the event is absolutely spectacular.
Then on to Walhalla for a birds eye view.
Being a Saturday the town was quite crowded and as I didn't want to fly the drone directly over people I restricted myself to a five minute flight to get some good aerial views of the town.
These shots were all taken from about 50m. I will go back on a quieter day and get higher altitude shots of the whole town.
The drone provides a video feed to my iPad and it is quite exciting to get a live view - it's almost like being up there yourself. Some people are using Virtual Reality goggles to fly their drones and the experience is almost like being in the drone. At this early stage of my flying career the focus is mainly on acquiring good flying skills and to get some confidence in the drone itself. My next challenge now is to find a way of transporting the drone on a motorbike so that I can combine flying and motorcycling so watch out for more aerial views.