Archive for the ‘trail’ Tag

Pics Or It Didn’t Happen – Trails End

You’ve just finished telling your friends about your latest wheeling adventure, complete with prolific arm gestures, impressive body language, graphic details, and your overall thoughts about the entire exploit. Dead silence. Then someone says, “pics or it didn’t happen.” Pics, you ask? That’s so three years ago. You got video. High-definition, kick-butt, can-almost-taste-the-dust video.

It wasn’t always this way. It used to be unusual to see video being recorded on the trail. Back in the day, we were the oddity (more than usual) when we showed up at the Telluride Rotary 4×4 Tour in Colorado with a rented VHS camcorder (it was one of the giant ones that rested on your shoulder and made you look like you worked for a television network). We were the only ones videotaping at obstacles, and even still, cameras were a rarity because this was prior to the widespread availability of cell phone cameras. We had several requests for copies of the tape, which we gladly provided after we figured out how to wire two VCRs together and waited for hours while the copying took place.

Nowadays, it’s common to see 4x4s outfitted with forward- and rear-facing waterproof high-definition cameras suction-cupped to the body or glass of the rigs.

A few years and a huge technology jump later, we returned to the Telluride Rotary 4×4 Tour with a Kodak DC50 digital camera at a time when digital cameras were a brand-new thing. The DC50 didn’t take video, required a cable to download, was held like a pair of binoculars, and was relatively large. But at least it was expensive. At the time, it was a cutting-edge piece of hardware that left people (and us) in awe. The filmless camera was quite the conversation piece as we used it on the trails to gather photos.

Technology waits for no one, and nowadays it seems everyone is packing a cell phone that can take a mega-megapixel photo or razor-sharp high-definition video. Often, we’re on the trail, standing between the crowd and an obstacle “working” and we’ll look one way and see a 4×4 doing its thing. We’ll turn the other way and scores of cellphones are pointed at the action. It’s an exciting time. It’s also an embarrassing time when we fall on the rocks and 75 people get it on video.

But now, the wheeling world has entered a new age where technology unrelated to vehicle performance has infused itself into off-roading. It’s probably the most exciting time yet for reliving our off-road adventures, and it’s the incredible growth of vehicle-mounted cameras. We see ’em at trailrides and events all the time. Nowadays, it’s common to see 4x4s outfitted with forward- and rear-facing waterproof high-definition cameras suction-cupped to the body or glass of the rigs. We’ve succumbed to the tech and run a small forward-facing dashcam in our Power Wagon all the time. It powers up when the truck starts and shuts off when the ignition is turned off. It has recorded our most heroic off-road moments—and our most stupid mistakes. And we just returned from driving a ’15 Ford F-150 that was equipped with cameras that allow a 360-degree view of the truck. Recording capability isn’t available on the system yet, but we see it coming. Soon, we may be able to check an option box that will outfit a 4×4 with the technology that will allow us to record everything that goes on in each direction as we wheel using factory-installed cameras.

Nowadays, video is on a tear, and the phrase should be “video or it didn’t happen.” Which leads us to this question: If you use a dedicated video recorder when you go wheeling, what kind do you use? Is it mounted inside or outside of your rig? Do you run more than one video camera? Where are you most likely to use the footage: social media, your club’s website, or just for personal use? What is the most amazing footage you’ve captured? Or, do you think recording video of off-roading is stupid?

From: http://www.fourwheeler.com/features/1503-pics-or-it-didnt-happen-trails-end/#ixzz3RRzQkAvD

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DNR announces name of new hiking and bicycling trail from Belle Isle to Ironwood

We asked and you answered – to the tune of nearly 9,000 name suggestions for Michigan’s planned, statewide hiking and bicycling trail stretching from Belle Isle Park in Detroit to Ironwood in the western Upper Peninsula. The Department of Natural Resources today announced this showcase trail will officially be called Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail.

“This name effectively captures the beauty and strength of our state’s exceptional natural and cultural resources,” said DNR Director Keith Creagh. “Along the route from Belle Isle to Ironwood, Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail will ultimately connect communities, provide a variety of recreation opportunities, and showcase our great state to residents and visitors alike.”

Creagh said it’s important to note that while Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail is a work in progress, significant portions of the trail already exist throughout both peninsulas and are open right now for public enjoyment and exploration.

“The hard work and thoughtful vision that have for years gone into Michigan’s existing trail system and future connectors help to lay the groundwork for completion of this important cross-state trail,” Creagh said.

The DNR in September hosted a contest inviting residents and visitors to submit their best ideas to help name the trail. More than 8,800 submissions were received and then evaluated by a team representing partner organizations – the Michigan Trails Advisory Council, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Michigan Recreation and Park Association and the Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance – involved in the trail’s establishment.

DNR Director Creagh chose the final name based on recommendations from that committee.

The trail-naming contest ran for three weeks (Sept. 22-Oct. 13, 2014), with entries submitted via online survey, Facebook and paper entry form. Contest participants also showed their support by sending hand-drawn logo concepts, personal stories about their connections to trails and even a stack of entries from elementary students.

The DNR received hundreds of variations of the final name. To determine contest winners, three names were randomly drawn from that smaller pool of entries: Amanda Mailer (Rochester, Michigan), Matthew Husted (Jerome, Michigan) and John Meikle (Lapeer, Michigan). Each will be awarded (via drawing) one of three vacation prize packages at locations along the trail:

– The Henry Ford and Westin Book Cadillac Hotel in Detroit

– The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

– Kaug Wudjoo Lodge at Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park in Ontonagon

First proposed as a “showcase trail” by Gov. Rick Snyder in November 2012, Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail will stretch across Michigan and link numerous existing trails to provide both a 1,259-mile hiking route and a 774-mile bicycling route. One end of the trail lies in Michigan’s newest state park, Belle Isle Park (Wayne County); the other is more than 900 miles away in Ironwood (Gogebic County).

The Parks and Recreation Division of the DNR, as well as other partners, currently is seeking private and public funding to secure and develop trail corridors for Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail. Temporary connectors already are in place along much of the trail and will be made permanent as resources become available. For more information about the development of the trail, please contact DNR state trails coordinator Paul Yauk at 517-284-6141.

Additional segments of Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail will open throughout 2015, with ceremonial events in communities along the trail to locally mark the occasions.

Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail follows the existing North Country National Scenic Trail for most of its length in Michigan (1,085 of 1,259 miles). North Country Trail extends to the New York/Vermont border to the east and central North Dakota to the west. Spanning 4,600 miles, it is the longest National Scenic Trail in the nation.

Michigan – a national leader in designated trail miles and plentiful opportunities for hiking, bicycling, snowmobiling, kayaking and other trail pursuits – continues to cement its reputation as the nation’s Trails State. The state offers more than 12,000 miles of recreational trails total.

An extensive Michigan State Trails system provides broad public access to low-cost, healthy recreation opportunities and strengthens communities’ appeal by boosting quality-of-life amenities.

The Department of Natural Resources works each year with local communities and partners to celebrate and promote Michigan’s excellent public trail offerings during Michigan Trails Week – which this year runs Sept. 19-26, 2015. The website offers many planning tools and ideas for participating community projects.

Visit the DNR website http://www.michigan.gov/dnrtrails to sign up for email updates and to learn more about Michigan’s Iron Belle Trail and other recreation trail offerings.

As read on: http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/MIDNR/bulletins/ebca61