Firstly, Happy New Year to all my readers! I haven’t posted for a while but I wanted my first post of the year to be a good one, so I’ve been waiting until I had something decent to post.
Inspired by Ryan Kremsater’s recent video, my two brothers and I decided to spend the first few days of 2015 riding our unicycles in Wales.
I took my new Sony A7s along to shoot the riding and I’ve made a short video documenting the trip. It was my first time using the Sony to shoot something specifically. There’s a few things I’d like to say about the video.
Firstly, the riding isn’t great. All of us are a bit rusty, I haven’t been out in a while, let alone out on technical rocky trails. The other two told me they hadn’t ridden in a couple of years. We did ride much better trails than I show in the video, but I had my camera in my bag for those and was concentrating on riding them rather than filming.
Secondly, I apologise for the mega shaky camera work. I didn’t take a tripod or rig with me, mainly to save on weight. Having used video cameras for most of my video-making career, I didn’t realise that the Sony would be so sensitive to hand movement. I’ve had to stabilise a couple of riding shots to make them watchable. A definite lesson learnt there.
Finally, I haven’t graded it. This footage is directly from the camera. I haven’t learnt Adobe Speedgrade very well yet and I would probably make it look worse. Once I get more comfortable with it I’ll definitely grade my projects but I’d rather leave it be than ruin it with an awful grade.
We spent three days in Snowdonia, North Wales. To keep it nice and cheap we wild camped. It was raining heavily first night and we got wet while pitching the tent which wasn’t nice. The second night was much better and we went to a pub so we could stay up later than 5pm and have light. We rode the trails at Coed Y Brenin. It’s just down the road from Snowdon and we’ve always meant to go there. The trails are great, we rode the MBR trail which is 18km. There’s quite a bit of fireroad but it’s linked up with some nice singletrack.
We also rode Snowdon itself. We had originally intended to walk up the Miner track and ride down the Snowdon Ranger but we missed the shuttle bus to the beginning of the Miner track. Instead we walked up and rode down the Llanberis path. We usually try and avoid the Llanberis path because it’s the most busy and least technical. They’ve ‘improved’ the path since we first rode it which makes it a bit dull to ride. Luckily because we were all out of practice it was still fairly challenging. There are some good bits, however, I kept the camera in the bag and concentrated on not falling off.
We were extremely lucky with the weather. The forecast was cloudy with a 10% chance of clear skies later in the day. In a way, missing the bus worked to our advantage because by the time we got to the summit the cloud had started clearing. On the way back down the sky cleared altogether and we were treated to the most amazing sunset. It was truly magical to be riding down in the snow with an incredible view and breathtaking sunset to boot. The best ride I’ve ever had on Snowdon by a long way.
Without further ado, here’s the video. Enjoy!