Southwest Circle in a Blur

That’s what happens when you compress a 6-day trip into 3-1/2 days.

Just got back from a 3-1/2 day version of Flying M Air‘s Southwest Circle Helicopter Adventure. I won’t do that again. A photographer and I rushed around from Tuesday morning until Friday at noon, trying to visit and photograph or video all of the destinations and the flights in between. I’m talking about Sedona, Grand Canyon, Lake Powell, Monument Valley, and Flagstaff. In 3-1/2 days. Should make your head spin just thinking about it.

I have some stories to tell about the trip, as well as photos and video taken by me and by my companion for the trip, Richard Noll. If you’re a Bigfoot follower, you may know of Rick — he’s done documentaries about monster hunting for Discovery Channel and cable networks.

Rick’s job was to take photos and videos while we were in flight — which is something I can’t do — as well as on the ground where permitted. He left me with about 3 hours of video and close to 900 12-megapixel digital photos. My job, over the next few months, is to turn our raw footage into slideshows, video podcasts, and a DVD to show people some of the things they’ll see on the excursion.

But they’ll be lucky. They’ll be able to see it over 6 days, which is far more reasonable.

Flying in PhoenixRick took the photo you see here as I was flying into Phoenix yesterday at around noon. As helicopters enter the Phoenix Class B airspace, they’re instructed to stay below 2,000 feet (Sky Harbor is at around 1,200 feet, I believe) and normally approach the airport by flying down the west side of Central Avenue. That’s what you see here out the front windows. The red thing on the left (that’s reflecting on my window) is one of the back doors. We took a door off each day so Rick could take glare-free videos and photos. This photo will probably be the opening shot of the first video podcast I put together.

More later. Got a bunch of stuff to do this morning.

What do you think?