The Return of the Helmet Cam

To the store, that is.

For over a year I wanted a lipstick-size helmet camera to take mountain biking and snowboarding and, finally, Kristin had given me one for my birthday this year. The only problem, was that helmet camera footage is really kind of annoying to look at for long periods of time, especially if you're not hucking big jumps or travelling at mach 2.

I took the camera out on the trail a couple of times, and I have to say that the video just wasn't nearly as interesting as I thought it would be. For starters, all you see is the trail. That might sound fine, but without a rider in the frame or at least the front tire and handlebars, you lose all sense of exactly how technical and difficult the trail is. The second strike against using the camera was that it required me to lug around my Sony MiniDV camcorder in my backpack. That's a lot of extra weight, not to mention a pretty pricey piece of equipment to risk crashing onto. Lastly, do I really want to weed through hours of video to produce a 5 minute video to upload onto YouTube? Me thinks not.

It makes much more sense to just bring the camcorder and get off the bike and get really good footage of riding tech sections with friends by, you know, actually pointing the camera at one another. And besides, I've always preferred still images to video anyway. Just ask my father who was treated as if he had a bad case of the plague whenever he brought the camcorder out. The only reason I even own a camcorder is because for a while it was the best way to capture screenshots of videogames.

In exchange for the helmet camera, Kristin surprised me with a pair of the world's best snowboarding gloves. They're just like a pair I left on the back of truck at Mount Baker last year. They've got long sleeves, carbon-fibre wrist guards, gore-tex coating and insulation, and zippered pockets atop the hand for those hot-pocket warmers. They're the bomb, as the kiddies used to say. And by kids, I mean me.

Now if only this La Nino year doesn't screw up the snow levels and leave us high and dry. Actually, dare I say that would be a good thing... more time to train for Trans Rockies.

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