Today I am opening a gallery of photos taken while I followed Len Forkas in the 2012 Race Across America–a 3,000 mile, 12 day bike race. The social media coverage provided by Pawpro was a substantial part of why Forkas and his non-profit, Hopecam.org was able to raise more than $300,000.
These are purely photos which is a distinction from the miles of video I compiled. In almost two weeks on the road, I only dedicated myself to shooting stills for a few hours total because of the priority to get video coverage and the limits on awake time, available wireless signals, editing time, and time being in proximity to Forkas to shoot footage. The collection will grow as I begin to review the video footage and create stills from certain moments of it.
When solo shooting a live event such as this the photographer/videographer must commit to one medium or the other for fear of capturing nothing if caught transitioning. The photographic moments either occur at a painstakingly slow or frustratingly unexpected pace. In sports gab, that means you must be on your toes at all times. If I had it to do again there would be things done differently, and other things that would be impossible to do differently under the same conditions. As an example, as much as I wanted to stay awake for 48 straight hours, sleep a few hours, rinse and repeat, no amount of Red Bull was going to keep me awake beyond a certain point. It was an experience that I will never forget. It took several weeks for my hand to recuperate from constantly holding the camera.
I was going to start this post by drawing the parallels between what was accomplished by Len Forkas and his Race Across America for Hopecam and Diana Nyad’s latest attempt to swim from Cuba to Florida. I was rooting for her, and remember how captured I was by her initial attempt back in the late ’70’s. It was that spirit for adventure that inspired me to join in the excitement of Race Across America. Then word came she had been pulled from the water–beaten by jellyfish, weather and sharks. My initial thought was, “I’m so relieved that there were no jellyfish or sharks to worry about in RAAM!” I don’t think the Hopecam crew would have survived as long as Nyad in such elements. As it happened, we didn’t have a drop of rain in our 11 day crossing of the U.S.
Thankfully, Len Forkas met with success in his endeavor. However, falling short at any extreme adventure comes with a fair amount of pride in having planned and made the attempt, at all. I am of the belief that so few can even claim to have conceived and committed to such outrageous challenges, that to have tried and stopped is no failure in the world of extreme sports. Although, I know that the individuals who commit to these challenges are rarely satisfied just by the attempt.
Untill the next adventure!