Photos from 09JUL18 | Drone video

Pine View, Ogden Canyon, and Antelope Island

July 9th, 2018

July 9th, I spent all day with the Spark. Perfect flying days don’t come around often. Good temperature, no wind and light wispy clouds in the sky. It was probably the best day I have had on 4 (charging in the Spark while driving) batteries.

Unfortunately, it was the last day I would have with Spark 3, after it went in the water. I wasn’t too disappointed. I’ve done this twice before and I know what to expect.

Besides – it really won’t be long before I’m up in the air again.

DJI trgrils


The Spark is a tough-as-nails mini-drone.


About a week after I got my second Spark, I crashed it into the side of the house at about 15 feet because I’m too stupid to remain cognizant of the inverted lateral controls needed when the aircraft is facing you.

It was completely fine.

Another day on another drone, I was flying in Sport Mode along the edge of the beach when a grip of birds hiding in the brush decided to bolt:

Propellor broke on this one…but that’s all. Other than that it was completely fine. The Polar Pro PL filter it was wearing was still on the camera and, obviously…the battery didn’t eject.

More importantly though, no birds were killed.

I am actually chronicling how does one exactly kill 3 Sparks in one year? What does he use it for? How often? How did DJI respond each time?

One lasted 8 days. The next one for 9 months. And the 3rd one for just a few weeks.

We will discuss telemetry, environment, flight log in that series…but not battery buckles

You can follow that here.

Pine View Dam

This was my first stop. By luck i saw some tree swingers down by the water where I was at an elevated position.

But that got old real fast. There wasn’t much else going on so let’s RTB and find a more interesting spot.

Ogden Canyon

Ogden canyon

This canyon connects Ogden to Pine View and Huntsville. It’s got a waterfall but there wasn’t much water falling on this day. I flew up and caught a 360 Pano.

Here are a few shots from that process:



Ogden canyon2

Another shot of Ogden Canyon during the 360 workflow. Here is what the Pano turned out like:

The Ogden Canyon Pano

360 photo

It takes the Spark to shoot about 47 different shots for every single 360 photosphere. Above is the flat file, but if you tap on it it’s a link to a viewer at Kuula. This platform allows native embeds of 360 photos…but Apple News doesn’t…unless you embed the code for a Google Maps 360 Street View.

Here is what the waterfall looks like from the ground earlier in the year when there was more water.

I wanted to get up and down the waterfall one more time, but after the 47 shot process the Spark takes to get a photosphere, my battery running dead and I’m charging these (in the Spark) as I’m driving. I decided to pack it up and head out to the next destination.,-111.904319,15z

Antelope Island

I got to antelope Island and drove about halfway out the causeway. It was still mid morning. The sun had broken free from the mountains and there was a slight bit of sparse, wispy cloud cover.

I pick out which filters I wanted to use and went with an ND 8 first because I wanted to start out flying directly at the light source. I had one fresh battery and one battery with about three LEDs late and so I knew I was going to spend at least one battery at antelope Island and it paid off big time.

Sunrise antelope island

At the right angle I can get the Spark to reflect the sky in the very shallow water and it would completely mask waterfowl just until it was right in front of it.

The antelope Island Causeway is a great place to fly because it’s got a five mile stretch of road that is flanked on usually both sides with water.

Spark antelope

Drone operators are actually allowed out on the park itself. The island has a no drone sign posted, however they haven’t done when it takes too for a geo-fenced NFZ. I actually did take the Spark up there once before I knew that it was not allowed.

Tiny planet

But all the cool shots take place out on the causeway the road is a beautiful man-made structure to photograph. Sunny days work because if it turns the water blue and when you come up on waterfowl of the contrasting colors of the mountains and the really blue water and make for a great photo or video experience.

Semi-cloudy days are the best because when the clouds have a very unusual are striking a dramatic shape in the sky and you can put the camera in a position that you can mirror that in calm water which is another factor that you know makes the lucky shot.

I was lucky that I got out there early and I’m still kind a little bit of the sunrise the weather was perfect and there were some beautiful birds. The sky was so beautifully dramatic and seeing that was a beautiful experience

Antelope Island

Now, admittedly some of these came out of Google Photos. I’m actually quite surprised at some of the things Google Photos will do for you when it analyzes the images from a certain location and time frame. For example; if you take multi-bracket or a sequence of shots that overlap…a few days later the Assistant will present you with an HDR composite or perhaps a panorama photo. it might take a while. If you upload similar images with different exposures, it will generate an HDR or AEB result:



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Also published on Medium.

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