The PDD drone, piloted by Cory Fechner (liftoffaerials.com) was at the start of the 2015 John Beargrease Sled Dog marathon yesterday to shoot aerial footage. There were other drones at the starting line so we ventured out into the woods to capture the mushers a quarter-mile into the race.
The expected release of new unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) regulations later this month and the recent commercial drone incident with TGI Friday’s in New York (TGI Friday’s Dumb Mistletoe Drone Cut Somebody’s Face Open) have me thinking about the future of commercial drone use. Perfect Duluth Day has been somewhat on the forefront of the use of drones since I purchased a quadcopter capable of shooting photography and video back in 2013.
Current FAA Drone Guidelines
I utilize my 4 drones (DJI s800evo, Tarot FY680 Pro, DJI Phantom 2 Vision & Vision 2+) to shoot content for digital media, which has drawn attention beyond PDD via the Star Tribune, Pioneer Press, MPR and also Duluth news outlets. I was contacted by the Federal Aviation Administration in early 2014 after shooting the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon and told I was in violation of FAA regulations because my footage was considered commercial.
I won’t get into the specifics of what the current regulations entail, but needless to say they are bit vague and need clarification. The National Transportation Safety Board felt the same way, dismissing multiple instances in which the FAA fined UAV operators $10,000 for commercial operation. There has been kind of a wild west approach to commercial use of UAVs since then, with little risk of citations or fines until the new regulations are released.
Built in 1962, the Duluth Target store was one of four Targets built in the company’s inaugural year. Roseville was the first store; the other two opened in St. Louis Park and Crystal. Target President Doug Dayton said the new stores would, “combine the best of the fashion world with the best of the discount world, a quality store with quality merchandise at discount prices, and a discount supermarket.”
Drone fly over of the Thomson Dam and Munger Trail foot bridge on the St. Louis River near the entrance of Jay Cooke State Park. This is also home to the UMD Outdoor Program Outpost on the St. Louis River/Thomson Reservoir.
Aerial Footage by www.liftoffaerials.com
Great nature cam setup in Katmai National Park in Alaska to watch Brown bear feed themselves on Sockeye Salmon. More than a hundred Brown Bears stalk a mile stretch of the Brooks River to snack on the world’s largest Sockeye Salmon run.
The big news was announced today by the NFL that Minnesota will host Super Bowl 52 in 2018. The Vikings, Saints and Colts gave 15-minute presentations to team owners in Atlanta, Ga. and after the voting the Vikings won the bid. Full details and video at nfl.com.
Quick video at the High Falls on the Pigeon River last week. This waterfall is the highest in Minnesota at 120 feet. It was a very windy day but my new rotopixel two-axis gimbal performed well to keep the camera pretty steady. You can visit the falls at the Grand Portage State Park just a few blocks from the Canadian border on Highway 61. Aerial Footage by www.liftoffaerials.com