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(June 18-22, 2008)

Martin Hrdlička

Real Aerial Panorama

John J Housser

Ditch Pig - Mountain Biking

Diamond Head Mountain, Squamish, BC, Canada

June 21, 2008 - 7:10 PM local time

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© 2008 John J Housser, All Rights Reserved.

This season has been an opportunity for me to focus on a few things. With a more permanent move to BC, a new home, new job, and new bike, has pretty much led to a fairly new lifestyle. My second year mountain biking has been quickly progressive, elevating me to stunts and trails I had previously thought far above my head. I've also had a chance to pick up the camera again and get back into photography, this being my first participation in the WWP in some time.

When discovering the Elevation theme, I immediately realized the crossover potential with some of the mountain biking photography I've been working on lately. British Columbia is famous for what is now known worldwide as, "North Shore," style mountain bike trails. Because of the nature of the consistently wet and rainy coastal regions, trails had to start being built above the ground, using fallen trees, rock features, and man-made wooden structures. Initially frowned upon by traditional mountain bikers, these man-made features are now staples on any trail around the world, and riders and builders are constantly pushing the perceptions for what is possible in terms of design, magnitude, and environment.

This feature is a bridge drop on a trail called, "Ditch Pig," which is on Diamond Head mountain, in Squamish, BC. At times the surface of the bridge is about 8' off the ground, and at the end the rider must drop about 8' to the ground. Riders are commonly riding 40+ lbs mountain bikes, with up to 8" of front and rear suspension.

This shoot was also quite challenging, as it was on Sunday night at about 8pm. The sun had long disappeared over the mountain ridge, and was fading very quickly in the forest. To get a shutter speed of 1/250, we needed to shoot at f/4, ISO 3200. I was using a telescopic pole, and apparently bumped the focus ring as I was raising the pole. As it was the end of the day of riding, we didn't have too much energy for many attempts. This sort of photography has been very exciting though, and you can find more of my biking photographs at: http://vr.housser.ca/?group=biking
Canon 40D Sigma 8mm/3.5 Pole & Cable Release

PhotoMechanic CaptureOne PTGui Photoshop

Willing and able cooperative riders

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