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Yep … I’m in the woods

A drone 235 feet directly above the abbey. Click here for high resolution version.

I’ve been interested in photography drones for a long time. But only recently did drones become halfway affordable. Smaller and smaller computer chips, improvements in battery technology, and smaller and better cameras have made it possible to build drones that weigh less than half a pound but which can shoot excellent 4K video. The drone I bought is a DJI Mini 3.

I took the photo above by putting the drone on its landing mat in the driveway in front of my house. There are trees all around me, so the driveway is the safest area for avoiding trees. I flew the drone straight up to an altitude of about 235 feet, then pointed it southwest to shoot this picture. The low mountains are the Sauratown Mountain chain, a small chain of mountains in Stokes and Surry counties (of North Carolina) about forty miles south of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia. The three bumps to the right include Hanging Rock State Park, and the bump to the left is Sauratown Mountain.

It will certainly be a while before I have the skill to shoot any dramatic video with the drone. Learning to fly drones takes a lot of practice. Some of the YouTube videos shot with drones are amazing. There are lots of people who have been flying drones for years and who are very good pilots as well as good photographers and video editors. And it seems that a great many of them live in picturesque places such as the coasts of the U.K. (including Scotland) and Ireland. I have a lot to learn. But I’ll certainly have drone videos, and more drone photos in the future.


  1. Chenda wrote:

    Looks very Tolkien-esq 🙂

    Monday, August 21, 2023 at 11:31 am | Permalink
  2. daltoni wrote:

    Hi Chenda: That’s a nice thought! I could pretend that I’m at the inn at Bree looking toward Weathertop… 🙂

    Monday, August 21, 2023 at 11:49 am | Permalink
  3. Henry Sandigo wrote:

    How exciting. I look forward to many dramatic or interesting pictures.

    Maybe you’ll stumble onto a “lost treasure similar to the lost treasure of the Sierra Madre staring Humphrey Bogart”.

    Monday, August 21, 2023 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

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