Arakawa River Ride

MJG Guides, Japan 1 Comment

Last weekend Jason and I took a cycle-camping trip north up the Arakawa river (wild river) into Saitama. We set out on April 27th and came back on my birthday, the 28th, covering 170km in total, free-camping overnight in the grass by a day-time BBQ area.

It was an incredibly liberating feeling to get out of the city under our own steam, without having to rely on crowded commuter trains or pass through one of the city’s manic transit hubs.

Once we were clear of the city, rolling on the excellent bicycle path that tracks the Arakawa for most of its length back up to its fount at Mount Kobushi in Saitama, we were surrounded by green, clear fresh air, and lots of empty space.

Empty space is something you forget about living in the city. In the city you have to compress yourself into a little walking box, with your i-pod ear-buds tucked in, the only space you have being the immediate few inches around you, even less if you’re on a rush hour train.

In the country, you decompress. It felt like a different Japan.

So- of course I took my new camera with me, and took a lot of footage. For the past 3 days now I’ve been wrangling the data, trying to twist it into something decent. It was my first time to ever deal with video, so it was a pretty steep learning curve. I experimented with about 4 different programs, downloaded the data from the camera multiple times as it kept crashing and corrupting, ran countless tests to get compression ratios right, and edited the material 3+ times with different cuts, music, and titles each time.

Phew.

The Final Cut, which will be very far from perfect as I’m a total novice at this game, is right here:

Any comments about what’s good, and of course what can be improved, will be much appreciated.

The Googlemap to the campground and the Cotton Cafe is here:
View Larger Map

You can see my other Voyages/Trips articles in the Voyages/Trips Gallery.

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