Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fort Davis Cyclefest Bear Mountain (Video Presentation)

Fort Davis Cyclefest
Fort Davis, Texas
September 21, 2013
The Fort Davis Cyclefest features a 75 mile scenic loop over the Davis Mountains. There are three major hills ranging from 1-3 miles of climb and one "heartbreak" (11%) hill after one thinks he is finished with the hills on the route.
Earlier this year I received a new "toy" from my boys: a GoPro Hero 3 video camera. Fort Davis was my big chance to show shots heretofore not available using my point and shoot camera. I could show climbs and downhills and document people passing me left and right as if I were standing still.
However, the road vibration kept making the camera lean to the side. I would straighten it up on my handlebar and shortly it would lean again. On one of the adjustments, the camera came right off in my hand. One of the camera mounts broke, so I was lucky that it didn't fly off down some canyon instead of in my hand.
As such, I got only some moving shots of Bear Mountain and one shot of Fisher Hill after stopping to shoot. Since the action was short, I thought I would show a few of the videos: an addition to my usual format. 
A word of lamentation and frustration. Cameras, whether still or video, do NOT capture the true incline or decline of a hill. The surface always looks flat or like rollers, so you probably wonder what all the whining is about. Trust me, the hills are steep, or better yet, join me (pass me) next year on the third weekend of September. 
Bear Mountain: beginning the climb.
(I think the guy heard me coming, and there was no way he was going to let an old man pass him).
Bear Mountain: midway.
Bear Mountain seems to just go on and on...and it does.
Bear Mountain. Last two minutes of the climb.
Brian passed me. He is the tiny dot way up ahead. He was SPINNING. Then Rick passed me. We slogged up the mountain and were greeted by Rest Stop 3.
Bear Mountain: downhill.
Generally, I do not get to take pictures of downhill rides as it is too dangerous to let loose of the handlebar to shoot. Going down Bear Mountain is not as exciting as Fisher Hill or the S curves after the McDonald Observatory. However, my camera mount broke after Bear so you will have to wait until next year to see those downhills.
Fisher Hill Start.
As mentioned, my camera mount had broken, so I found a spot that almost leveled out to stop and take a shot of the scene. Fisher Hill is a "short" (1 1/2 mile) but scenic climb that ranged from 7-11% incline.
The normal blow by blow with still pictures will be published shortly. Thanks.


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