I recently read about a new mountain bike helmet cam from Twenty 20 camera that looks pretty rad. Apparently it’s just an image sensor, to actually record your rides you’ll need a video recorder or camcorder of some sort but it looks sweet nonetheless. They even have some sample videos posted that look ok, though I’ve certainly seen better image quality from other cameras.
All this reminds me of my feeble initial attempts to capture the excitement and adrenaline rush associated with mountain biking. My first attempt involved a sling I rigged up for my 8mm Sony Handycam in the late 1990s as I rode one of my favorite sections at the world famous Chapel Hill High School trails in North Carolina. The results from my experiment were nothing short of spectacular and if you haven’t seen the movie you can do so here: mountain bike disaster. Needless to say I needed another solution.
Fast forward a couple years and change locations to Colorado Springs, CO. By this time I had upgraded to a newer camera and so my 8mm Handycam was essentially more “disposable” for my next attempt. This time I recognized the need for a more hands-free experience so I decided to mount the entire camera (weight: 1-2 pounds) to an old bike helmet I had in the closet. I chose my favorite Colorado Springs trail, Palmer Park, for this episode and went out with a group of friends. I rode a couple miles without incident, though the heavy camera on my head definitely left me with a bit of neck pain.
When I got home I was excited to see how the filming turned out, especially since I put on some gnarly moves out at the trail. Much to my disappointment, however, the resulting video was focused entirely on the ground directly beneath my front wheel. Apparently the angle of the camera was way off and I didn’t have the heart to try again. Lesson learned, I think I’ll leave the mountain bike filming to the You Tube crowd of 2007.