Archive for the ‘Motorcycling’ Category

2011 USDR Round 3 Photo Highlights

Highlights from the 2011 US Desert Racing Series Round 3 in Spangler Hills, CA

Buy photos from this event here.

Buy photos from this event here.

As a note to rider #9: My camera thought the bush was more interesting than your trick. The camera and I don’t always agree.

VCMC Rawhide Rodeo (Sunday Qualifier Enduro)

Photo Highlights:

Buy Photos at my photostore here.

Buy Photos at my photostore here.

VCMC Rawhide Rodeo (Saturday Family Enduro)

Photos from the Saturday Family Enduro here.Tree Jump

Photos from the Saturday Family Enduro here.

The Wedding Trip: Part 4, Colorado and Utah

Monday, June 6th, 2011

1213hrs, Cedaredge, CO

Having only half a day gives me the luxury of a late departure from the hotel. I’m not a morning person, so this is a welcome luxury. I prepare for a comfortable and relaxing ride to Moab.

This reminded me of a friend, so I needed to photo it.

Do ya think they irrigate?

1303hrs, Whitewater, CO

I head south on CO-141, and thus the scenic part of this adventure truly begins. Starting with a few horses.


Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

Unaweep Canyon

I pressed on, following CO-141 to the Dolores River and south towards Naturita

Someone has probably driven this at night, in the snow, with now plows to assist. ~200ft drop off with no guardrail.

Not entirely true color...

Near the hanging flume

Dolores River

-no caption-

When It Pours waterproof sleeve by the Dolores River in Colorado

Another by the Dolores River

The Hanging Flume... Or at least what's left of it.

1557hrs, Naturita, CO

I fuel up for the relatively short ride to Moab, Utah. Neither of the two gas stations in Naturita will accept credit cards at the pump. Town law? I dunno, but this is particularly frustrating for motorcyclists. Or at least, I find it much more frustrating when I’m on my bike than when I’m driving my car. I think it has to do with the fact that I fill my bike up while I’m still on it, and the bike is level. By making me go inside to pay, I have to put the kick stand down, pay, get the reciept (and if it’s pay-first I have to do this twice!) and all that crap. Annoying.

1849hrs, Moab, UT
1900mi (dead even)

I have safely made it to my destination and linked up with my contacts – a bunch of relaxed college-aged (slightly older?) friendly people living in a trailer just off the main drag of Moab. There’s a garden, and girls living in tents in the back yard. Pretty much run-of-the-mill for these marginally anonymous contacts. I fill up, and head out to dead horse point for the sunset.

View From Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah

My photoset from Dead Horse Point will be the feature of the following post. Honestly there are too many pictures to tag it onto the end of this post. So I’ll leave it with just this one for now.

Last Dog Standing

Boy oh BOY did I have a lot of fun shooting this event. Seriously, what a freggin’ blast. I think this highlight reel will give you a good idea as to why. =D

Don’t forget you can buy photos from my photostore here: Martin Iwanwicz Photography – Last Dog Standing

I don’t usually dilly-dally around with all this chit-chat on highlight reels, as I prefer to have the photos speak for themselves, but this one will require a few comments along the way. But first, I need to write a memo.

Dear Cowboy-hat-wearing-course-worker-guy,

That’s right, YOU:

Cowboy-hat-wearing-courseworker-guy photo-bombed the shit out of me

No, not the guy doing the faceplant in the water. But Cowboy-hat-wearing-guy. I’m not mad at you. I’m really not. Don’t get me wrong, I’m upset. I’m upset as all hell. My star photo from this event was photo bombed by a giant white, out of focus cowboy hat. Yeah, that gets my panties in a little bit of a bunch. But I’m not mad at you. You were just doing your job, and I know the risks of using a big ass lens and standing 30 feet away from the riders I’m photographing. I know that you and many other course workers were in the area and walking in my field now and then.  But I just wish – and maybe this wish is extended to the universe as a whole – but I just wish that you waited 5 seconds. Just 5 seconds. That’s all. Let this be proof – perfect shots require a bit of luck. All the fancy lenses, monopods, camera bodies, and spare batteries – they’re just there to make sure you’re ready to capture that perfect shot with all the beautiful color and depth that makes it look real pretty. But actually getting that shot? Luck definitely plays a part.


Martin Iwanowicz
Marginally Pisgruntled Photographer

-End of Memo-

Ok, with that out of the way, let’s move along, shall we? =)


Kids Race. He already knows the universal truth of "MORE THROTTLE!"

They did jumps...

They did hill climbs...

They went through tubes...

And they went over tubes...

Some rode quads...

And some looked way cooler with indiscriminately blasting water behind them.

That concludes all the very standard and boring shots. Now we start what you came here to see – the water crossing. Yes, the water crossing proved to be the photo-highlight of the day. Not because it was very challening, in fact, for some it was probably the easiest obstable… but for others, it was a race ender. Yes, the stakes were high. Most of these photos are part of a longer series, some of which I might feature in the future.  But let’s start with an experienced rider practicing proper application of the “MORE THROTTLE” universal truth…


-no caption-

Just think how this might end. -Part of a larger photoset-

Completely oblivious to what's going on behind...

MORE THROTTLE! -Part of a larger photoset-

-no caption-

You can buy photos from my photostore here: Martin Iwanowicz Photography – Last Dog Standing

The Wedding Trip: Part 2, Pikes Peak, Colorado

Saturday, June 4th, 2011.

0200hrs (approximately) We finally go to bed.

0830hrs – My alarm goes off. I prepped my bike the previous night by tightening and lubing the chain. My tank bag is packed with my $2,700 rental camera lens, as well as my Rebel xti body (~$300) and my personal lens (~$250) for a total of about $3,250 – more than the value of my motorcycle – in my magnetic tank bag. I never use the safety strap. I have the crappy cup of complimentary coffee in my room and leave my netbook behind.

0913hrs – I buy an all-too-expensive breakfast from the hotel bar. Did I seriously just pay $4.24 for a stale, mass-produced pastry? Seriously Marriott, did you just do that?!

0942hrs, Manitou Springs, CO
1251 miles

I fill up the motorcycle at the 7-eleven with my large pack of college friends. Also, it’s pronounced “Man-eh-too” not “man-eh-tao” or however you fools say it.

0959hrs – I pay my $12 “summer adult” toll to drive up a big mountain (Pikes Peak Toll Booth in Cascade, CO). No Refunds.

Skiers being silly
Some of the road as viewed from the top
King of the hill! :D (Photo courtesy of my friend Ted)
The Proof.
The Better Proof.
The Product Plug. Waterproof Sleeves by When It Pours (my upstart!)

I figure you can use or take the waterproof sleeves my company makes pretty much anywhere. Part of this trip is to prove it. Since I didn’t take my laptop up Pikes Peak, this particular waterproof sleeve is holding some papers and my steno pad.

"look sexy!"

The Decent. (Photo courtesy of my friend Ted)

1230hrs (approximately)

Due to some peer pressure, I perform some *exceptionally* hard braking into hairpin corners on the ride down. What can I say, I’m a bit of a showoff. My tank bag with previously mentioned $3,250, and about 20-lbs worth of shock sensitive equipment decides it can’t quite hold on in such a circumstance. The safety strap is safely packed away. The tank bag containing more value than the motorcycle itself takes a nice tumble over the handlebars, bouncing off the front fender and rolling a couple times along the pavement.

Yes, I just effectively hucked a $2,700 camera lens at pavement. Truthfully, it has at least two layers of padding around it, and I’m surprisingly confident it’s fine.

My friends, in the Mazdaspeed Miata convertible gesture for me to toss said bag at them. “No” is my only response. I don’t want to pay for a new windshield AND a new lens.

1245hrs (approximately)

Upon inspecting the equipment inside the bag, it is discovered that the protector UV Lens filter did it’s job. It’s cracked, but both lenses, my camera, and the portable hard drive I keep with me are all fine. Relief is washed over me.

1423hrs – We dine at local Trinity Brewing company and prepare for the wedding of one of my very best friends. Photos from said event will not be featured as part of this series, since I consider it to be a catalyst for this ride, but not part of the ride itself.

Next I roll out towards Moab, Utah…

Barclamp Shim

I got this clock (Formotion C-Clamp Clock) for my SV650 (Year: 2002, sans-S) because it didn’t come with one.  The only problem is that the clock is designed for a 1″ diameter handlebar, and the SV650 only has a 3/4″ one.

No problem, stopping at the local hardware store fixes that. Picked up a ~1″ long piece of 3/4″ copper tube and cut it in half with a hack-saw the long way. Wrapped in electrical tape to keep it and place and *ALSO* prevent corrosion…

Connecting copper and aluminum together WILL cause galvanic corrosion, so the electrical tape is my half-assed approach to using the wrong metal for my shim, as I’m pretty sure the barclamp is polished aluminum. If I’m smart, I’ll buy the right shim ASAP, but this worked very well for an upcoming trip.

Anyways, pictures!

1st layer of tape

Tube, cut in half...

Second layer of tape

And the clock is installed!



Motorcycling Daily Gear List

In preparation for an upcoming ride here is a complete list of everything I carry on my bike 90% of the time.

First up; what I carry on myself:
– Wallet (World’s Thinnest Wallet. It’s OK if you have big pockets, but it is longer and wider than most wallets. The real solution is to just carry less.)
– Cell Phone (Currently a Samsung Galaxy S, which I’m very enamored with. I have the Captivate.)
– Keys.
Burt’s Bees Lip Balm (Peppermint)
– Belt: BISON Last Chance Heavy Duty Belt. Worth mentioning because it’s the toughest belt I’ve ever found.

Second; what lives on the bike:
– Cable Lock
– Bungee Cargo Net
– Cinch Strap (small. 5′ long, 1/2″ wide? Maybe 3/4″)
– Stock tool kit (surprisingly useful)
– Waterproof bag by When It Pours containing documentation: Maintenance log, pens, registration, motorcycle owners manual)

Trunk supplies

– Motorbike keys, including garage door opener (very handy) and cable lock key.
Formotion Handlebar Mount And Clock, since the 1st Gen SV650 doesn’t have come with a clock.
– Heated Hand Grips (Not pictured. I use Symtec Motorcycle Hand Warmers, with a rocker switch rather than the toggle switch pictured in that link. Also make sure to put the switch on the LEFT handlebar if you install your own hand warmers. Also this is the best investment I’ve ever made.)


Keys, clock



Third and final; what lives in my tank bag.
I take my tank bag on 90% of the rides I do. In reviewing what I carry with me, I realized most of this is just to form the habit of carrying that particular item so that I know it’s there and know where to find it. I don’t actually need an emergency whistle on a daily basis, but I know exactly where it’s packed. I’ve even started taking my tank bag on other adventures (auto car, airplanes) because it’s so consistently packed, I know exactly where everything I need is.


Tank Bag and everything that goes inside



Listed as pictured..
Upper Left -> Upper Right
– Towel
– Rain Fly
– Shoulder strap I never use and forgot I even had until I tore my bag down for this writeup.
– Emergency Whistle (on lanyard)
– Compass (on lanyard)
– Mounting straps for Saddle Bags (No, they don’t need to be in my tank bag, but I kept forgetting to take them off when I took the saddle bags off and then I would notice them and the only bag I had was my tank bag so now they live in there to make up for my deficiency as a person)
– Safety strap for tank bag (never used)

Middle Left -> Middle Right
– 10.1″ Netbook style Laptop computer (System76 Starling)
– Waterproof Bag for Netbook by When It Pours
– Headlamp
– Ibuprofen for when I don’t drink enough water (this pairs well with drink a lot more water)
Cortech 21-Liter Tank Bag With Magnetic Mount
– Waterproof bag by When It Pours containing: Miniature Road Atlas, Male/Male headphone cable because you never know when you’ll find a stereo that needs some love from your mp3 player, SquareUp credit card reader to square up without cash or do some roadside vending, Checkbook
– Assorted zip ties
– Flashlight with magnet-on-a-stick
– Tire Pressure Gauge

Bottom Left -> Bottom Right
– Assorted business cards
– Assorted pens
– Assorted fuses
– Dramamine, for the one time I bought it while being the codriver for a road rally. I don’t usually get motion sick, but try reading while someone is driving on twisty roads.
– Cheap sunglasses
– Steno Pad to try and organize my scattered brain
– Toll-booth change
– Spare tire stem cap
– Cables for laptop/cell charging
– My Buff
– Minature tripod
Leatherman Skeletool CX
Etymotic Research ER6i 32dB Noise Reducing Earbud Headphones. May not be legal to use while driving. Understandably so, since you  can’t hear anything else if you have the volume turned up.  Regardless, protecting hearing is very important, and they work great when paired with voice navigation from a GPS.
Ear-Peace earplugs
– Lens cleaning solution (for visor and cameras)
– Microfiber cloth

after years of riding, this is what I’ve determined to be the most essential things to carry on a motorcycle on a daily basis.

All packed in with room to spare



Dirt Diggers Desert Scramble, Spangler Hills, 2011-03-27

Buy photos from this event here: Dirt Diggers Desert Scramble, March 27, 2011 Photo Album

Lens: Canon 200mm f/1.8 USM… although, most shots were done at f/2.8 since it was really sunny in the desert.

Highlight reel…

Buy photos from this event here: Dirt Diggers Desert Scramble, March 27, 2011 Photo Album

Prospectors Enduro, Spangler Hills, 2011-03-20

This past weekend I shot the Prospectors Enduro in Spangler Hills.

Anyways, I took way too many photos.  I rented a Canon 7D for the weekend, and at it’s top-speed of 9 shots/second, and the 18megapixel resolution, it ate up the memory FAST.  If you want to check out the full album, it’s on my photostore, here. (note:  Photos should be available before 4am pst, March 22)

Sorry guys, in the interest of getting them up quick I didn’t sort out the bad ones.  There are a few subcategories:  Road Crossing, Lap 3 Check 1, and Misc.  The Misc photos were mostly taken around the Lap 3, Checkpoint 1 area as well.

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