The season has turned

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Yesterday’s equinox produced a dramatic and distinct change in conditions here where I live. I’m always attuned to the shifting light, and it almost seemed like the thick summery gold of California’s sunshine instantly began to thin out and whiten, as if a switch got flipped. At the same time, the prevailing breezes began to pick up speed and to flow towards us from cooler northern regions. These are the kinds of stimuli that get me to inspect my wetsuits, organize my gear, and just generally prepare my equipment for the campaign ahead.

I haven’t shot any mat footage since the Mat Meet at Cotton’s. Indeed, I’ve only ridden a handful of sloppy days locally, although there’s been surf elsewhere on the coast. But assuming that the shooting phase of this movie is going to take a year or so, I’m not concerned about it yet.

I’ve got my eye on some new camera gear. I’m not prepared to invest heavily in water housings etc. although something may come up. To hold me over, I went ahead and got one of Oregon Scientific’s ATC9K “action cameras.”

Oregon Scientific atc9k action camera

I fiddled around with both the ATC9K and a GoPro, and got the impression that the image quality is comparable between them. The ATC9K has an inferior microphone, but that wasn’t a concern to me. GoPro has a wider field of view, and that ended up as the deciding factor. Several other mat riders use the GoPro, so that wide-angle image will be well-represented in the final film. I wanted to complement that with water shots of slightly less fish-eyed image.

I’ll be on the road quite a bit in the next few weeks, and with any luck I’ll get some experience with the ATC9K and have something to show for it.