Fly6 camera test on a cold, foggy morning

I saw the Fly6 safety camera on Kickstarter a few months ago.  I didn’t contribute at the time, but I did register interest.  The idea was so brilliant, so well conceived, or should that be “resolved”.

Timely too.  The number of bicycle accidents this year has been off the charts.  I do most of my riding alone and while drivers are generally courteous, there’s always the inattentive and the odd dickhead that gets too close.

I was invited to be one of the first to buy, offered at a discount so I bought two.  Yesterday’s delivery was after a two months’ wait.  Well worth it.

First test was this morning.  Despite the cold (2°c) and the fog (99% humidity, 100m visibility) I had to get a mid-week ride in.

Here’s a few minutes of unprocessed video to demonstrate the picture quality, stability and colour balance despite the awful light conditions.  Number plates of cars in the near lane are clearly visible, as are the bus destination displays.

The more of us have these, the more drivers might think twice about taking risks at a rider’s expense.

Frankly, this isn’t much of a review, so read all about it at the Fly6 website.  I’ll post more video under different conditions… just as soon those different conditions arrive.

  • Road: Kate Crace Road and Flemington Road Gungahlin/Harrison ACT
  • Those things in the picture: Top, saddle bag; bottom, mudguard; behind, Amandeep.
  • Why is it bouncing? That’s the Trek Domane, baby.  Smoooooth.
  • What time? It was 0730 on 2/07/2014 (today), not 22:30 on 1/07/2014.

Too early to rite off Spring?

It seems that I was a bit early to judge that Spring is declared too early.
While the first few nights have been seriously sub-zero, most days have been warm; if you stay out of the wind.

This does not detract from my main point: [speaking from a part of Australia that experiences four seasons] the dates for the start of those seasons should change from the first of the month to one closer to the Earth’s rhythms.

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First day of Spring? My arse!

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Temperature dropped from a cold and windy 10.8°c to 3.3°c in about 30 minutes. Kept going until it reached -6.3°c.

In Australia the seasons are set from the first of the month. So Summer starts on 1 December, Autumn on 1 March, Winter on 1 June and Spring from 1 September. Of course, weather and seasons can play tricks and it has snowed in Canberra in December.

However, you are on a hiding to nothing when you tilt the game against yourself.

Being at such high altitude and a fair way South, Canberra experiences four seasons in a significant way. Winters are cold and dry, Summers are hot and dry (with cool nights providing relief), Spring is cool and wet and Autumn can’t make up its mind. But suggesting that Winter has somehow ended and Spring is now solely responsible for the weather is a bit like blaming, I don’t know, a politician for a decision that was made before they came to office. And we wouldn’t do that!.

So I’ll wait until 22 September (is that right?) to declare Winter handing over to Spring. I think that fair on both seasons.

So how did I celebrate the first day of Spring? I plugged in my engine block heater.

BTW if one does bother to walk outside, you’ll find a glorious sunny day with frost-covered everything and a stillness and beauty that only sub-zero nights followed by sunny days can bring.

UPDATE: The official BoM minimum temperature was -6.8°c becoming the coldest September day since -6.4°c in 1982.

Getting colder

ANZAC Day 25 April is significant for many reasons.  It commemorates the landing of the Australian Imperial Forces at Gallipoli in 1915.  After its importance waned during the 1960’s and 70’s, it has recently become a more important and observed holiday than even Australia Day.

No less significantly, it marks a tipping point in Canberra’s climate.  The cold weather starts and there won’t be any warm nights and days until September at the earliest.

The tipping point is marked by frost-bitten tomato plants, an extra doona (quilt, duvet) and warmer pants.  Yes, the expedition-strength boxer shorts have been worn once already.

With the high rainfall so far this year, the trees got a bit out of sync.  But they are finally displaying intense red, orange and even purple leaves, contrasting with the evergreen gums and pines.

And you can tell whose garage is full of stuff by the frosted windscreens on the cars left out at night.  I rearranged a few things to fit the Prius in beside the Citroën to avoid any delay should I need to drive in the morning.

Canberra is at its most beautiful in Autumn.