Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Test Drive

I decided to replace my point and shoot camera because I was very sad not having a camera to take with me on the bike.  I didn't want to spend a lot so I ended up buying a Panasonic Lumix for $120.  It has an 8x zoom which was more than the typical cameras in that price range and other than that I didn't care about features, I figured they're all more or less the same.  Plus it's red!  I took it for a test drive on the Left Hand/Boulder Valley trails this afternoon.

Left Hand Trail

Hill up the Left Hand Trail

Left Hand Trail

Boulder Valley-it was windy today, look at those whitecaps

Lenticular cloud over the Flatirons (view from the Eagle Trail)

Somehow the photos look nicer on my computer than they do uploaded to Blogger, the blue sky looks so washed out.  Oh well, that's not the camera's fault.  I'm happy enough with the photos given the price of the thing and it's about half the size and weight of my old point and shoot.  The only thing I don't like about it is that it doesn't have a manual view finder, you have to use the digital screen on the back of the camera and it's pretty much impossible to see anything in it in bright sunshine which is where I plan on taking most of my photos.  Not sure what to do about that.

It was colder than penguin snot Monday and Tuesday with a layer of ice over everything but today was sunny and 50's, great weather for a bike ride and some agility.  It was windy but that just made for a better workout.

Strum's dogwalk practice this morning was depressing, the worse so far though I haven't reviewed the video.  At least they were obvious misses that I didn't reward.  The part that killed me was that he seemed to be trying so hard but he couldn't work out what he was supposed to do.  If I back chained it and had him run down just the down ramp he was o.k. but he couldn't seem to put it together with a head of steam on the full dogwalk.  Set-up again was jump-dogwalk-tunnel-treat gizmo.  I straightened the tunnel out a bit so the treat gizmo wasn't next to the dogwalk as a distraction but it didn't matter.  I don't want to go back to the table/plank thing because I've done that before and it doesn't help.  He needs to learn how to manage that down plank at speed.  I guess we keep plugging away but lately I only seem to be digging a deeper hole.  I was sure I'd have this fixed by the April USDAA trial but now I don't know if I should enter.  I'm not going to waste any money on Grand Prix that's for sure.

On a brighter note there was a course still set up from over the weekend.  We gave it a bash and had a nice run, except for the dogwalk though he did finally get his contact on his second try.

This was an AKC Excellent course from some out of state trial.  It was straight forward and much easier than the DOCNA courses I've been doing lately because the distances were so much closer together.  I was ahead no problem for the whole course.

For laughs I tried a rear cross on the flat between 7 and 8 and it worked nicely, Strum had his eye on the table before he took the #8 jump.  I was even able to get way ahead on the straight-ish line of jumps from 11 to 15 and got in a front cross before the #16 teeter.  I also practiced that with a rear cross at the teeter but I liked the front better, got me further along the course and I didn't have to stop and wait for him to get on the teeter.  Nothing else terribly interesting about this course but it was nice to run something and finally have some success.  Handling felt much smoother than the other day and I remembered to keep my eye on Strum which is the main thing I'm focusing on right now.

More agility tomorrow morning and hopefully another bike ride then no training (or computer access) of any kind for 4 days.  I'm thinking the break from all of it will do us all some good.


  1. Wow, that is a very straight forward course - boring.

    That's why I find USDAA more challenging because of the distance between obstacles (but same technical challenges).

  2. Great pictures!! I have that same problem. The pictures look stunning on my computer and then I load them to blogger and they lose quality. Frustrating. but your pictures look good to me.

  3. I know, it's weird, I never had that problem with Blogger and photos from my other cameras. Or maybe I did and never paid close enough attention. Since I don't pay for Blogger I guess I can't complain too hard.

  4. Red! Sure, what more could one want in a camera! I was very excited by the flip video type things that you can order with a photo of your choice on them. A friend has one with her agility dog. It is totally cool. But I decided against that.

    Most of the P&Ss don't have viewfinders any more. My old one did, but it was so inaccurate that I never used it. I've found that having a hat with a brim is useful for seeing the screen on the back--might have to take it off my head & shade the camera, but whatever. I've made it work one way or another.

    Seems to be the month for people getting new P&Ss! And 8x zoom seems wonderful.

  5. I tried shading the screen but it didn't work. I'll have to experiment a bit and maybe get a little creative. My bike helmet doesn't help much I'm afraid.