Category Archives: Video

Crow Cackling

It was a lovely day and we had the doors and windows open this evening. Outside I could hear a couple of the local crows making one of their signature “cackling” calls back and forth.

Remember the crows when we first moved in here last May? They’ve come and they’ve gone from time to time, but they’re back now and quite vocal. The sound is a lot like the percussion section of the orchestra yesterday playing on the gourds or wood blocks.

I’m also here to report that I’m surprised how good the sound pickup is on the iPhone. I knew that **I** could hear the crow just fine, but I’m surprised that the video picked it up.

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Filed under Critters, Video

Sky Crane

While the fires near us (never got closer than about 10-12 miles, but had over 100,000 people evacuated and major freeways closed for days, several dozen homes destroyed and damaged) are not out, the winds have died down, the onshore flow has resumed and raised the humidity back out of single digits, and the fires are contained enough so that the evacuations orders have been lifted and the freeways re-opened.

That having been said, the fires are still a long way from out. With the calmer winds and better humidity, the fire fighters are hitting the fires hard, particularly with “aerial assets,” that is, planes and helicopters.

One of the big helicopters (I think it’s an Erickson Sky Crane, but not 100% positive) was being based out of Camarillo (CMA) right near our hangars. It was fun to watch it come and go.

Warning – I would recommend against starting this video with the sound too loud or while wearing headphones! This sucker is really, REALLY loud.

The strobing effect of the video capture mechanism in the iPhone is also interesting – that tail rotor looks like it’s barely moving, but in fact it was going at hundreds if not thousands of RPM!

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Filed under CAF, Disasters, Flying, Photography, Video

May’s Weird Weather In LA

Rain. Thunder. Lightning. In May. In Los Angeles.

Yeah, I get it. You live in Tornado Alley and weather like this just means that it’s a day that ends in “Y” and you think I (and everyone else in LA going ape over a little bit of convective activity) am a real goober.

Fine, wait until you come out here and run into Anne Hathaway or Keanu Reeves in Starbucks and you can’t remember your own name for five minutes…

I wasn’t sure we would actually get any rain at our location, but then the first drops hit the window.

The the lightning started and with it the downpours.

It was great to watch at lunch from the dry safety of my office.

(Image from NOAA Hi-Def Weather Radar Pro app)

Yeah – that’s a lot of yellow, orange and red!

(Image from Weather Underground app)

After the fact I noticed this on Weather Undergound – look at that temperature drop! 14°F in about an hour.

Fun times!

 

 

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Filed under Los Angeles, Photography, Video, Weather

Minimal Convective Activity

With a front moving through last night and making a mess of rush hour in LA I was hoping to see some convective activity (clouds building up into thunderstorms) when the sun came out.

It looked hopeful for an hour or so, but then fizzled as the winds came up. Instead of thunderstorms I came out to a car covered with pine needles, pollen, and debris.

Not a decent trade.

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Filed under Video, Weather

The Running Of The Butterflies

Something unusual has been happening around Los Angeles this year – butterflies. Clouds of them. Swarms of them.

We’re not talking “blotting out the sun” swarms, nothing apocalyptic. But for a few days last month there were days at the house on the hill where we would see what I estimated to be several hundred per minute flitting by for hours at a time. It’s been quite impressive.

They’ve been notoriously difficult to get pictures of. For the most part they’re not stopping or refueling on any of those flowers in our yard that I shared last month. They’re just bobbing and weaving in the breeze, a half dozen here, ten there, a few more over there, coming past the house and being gone downwind in just a few seconds.

Then they were gone for several weeks and I figured that was it. Until they started showing up on Thursday and Friday. Yesterday while driving back home from the hangar in Camarillo I saw the largest clouds of them I had seen yet, easily ten times the rate that I had seen last month.

This morning they were flowing past the house at a pretty good rate and I finally got some pictures. I found a corner of the house with a good view of the sky where the butterflies were coming around the house at my back and then silhouetted against the sky. I got video from my iPhone, than did some screen captures of freeze frames.

The individual images are somewhat blurry and small – they’re just a tiny crop of a full frame with a picture of a small-ish butterfly, typically five or six feet away. The video is found at the bottom.

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Filed under Castle Willett, Critters, Photography, Video

Sky Boom

We’ve got a bit of weather moving through tonight – I love this! And with an iPhone with a pretty good video camera built in, I can share:

It also does pretty good frame captures:

There actually is the faintest trace of the bolt still visible in that last shot – click on it to blow up the image to full screen size to see it.

It’s still booming out there, but about fifteen minutes ago another cell passed right over us, it started pouring, and the temperature dropped about 15°F in about five minutes. I’ll watch from inside for now.

 

 

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Filed under Photography, Video, Weather

Ford Tri-Motor

We got some unusual stuff flying about CMA and on the CAF SoCal ramp today, even by our standards.

Our PBJ (B-25) is done with it’s annual inspection and was back flying training missions. We had a Vietnam era Huey helicopter come in and take three groups of riders out.

I didn’t get to go on either aircraft – I have an audit starting Monday and had no time for flying today, which is a sad, sad commentary on the state of the world.

But I did come out of my padded room long enough at one point to see the EAA’s Ford Tri-Motor up and taking riders. You just don’t see one of those every day!

 

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Filed under CAF, Flying, Video