Day 197 – Hill Climb

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Day 2 of Bike Week, the event of the day was the Hill Climb. This was my first time attending a Hill Climb. I had my press pass and was free to roam wherever I chose to get the best vantage point. I met up with a couple of veteran photographers, who were kind enough to give me some tips. Boy, I’m really glad they did, because I had no idea what was about to happen. I figured the best place to start out was on top of the hill, a 250 ft tower of compacted dirt at the Bunting Sand and Gravel Company in West Branch, Michigan. By the time I reached the top, I felt every year I had experienced. I decided to accept a ride down the hill in a golf cart, when it was time. I spent 2 hours shooting these motorcycle hill climbers. It was another 90 degree day and I was soaking wet with sweat when the first climber took off. I was excited, I was close, I had a great view. I did get some nice shots, but the amount of dust well, let’s just say I was not prepared for that! My first thought was, “oh no, my camera is done!” I looked to the other photographers, and they were caked with dirt and dust, the same as me. This is the way it is, you get dirty, you go home and clean the camera. I must say it was a lot of fun being so close to the action. These riders are very courageous. The danger is high, as they are climbing at a very steep angle, and the dirt is loose, there are bumps along the way, if you get airborne, you will most likely take a spill. Then the fun begins, because the motorcycle tends to roll down hill, whether the rider is in the way or not. Some of these bikes are rigged with chains on their rear will for traction, watch out when that comes at you! This was a very exciting event. But I will say, the hill kicked my but. I had to go back to camp and take a nap. 🙂

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