Archives for the month of: March, 2011

Me and Matilda went out on a short hiking trip last Saturday to Sunday. The ambivalence that shows itself in nature being dragged back and forth between winter and spring truly is fascinating and beautiful.
Arriving at Listersjön, a lake in the middle of Blekinge, we decided to set up camp and go for dinner after which we set out exploring the surroundings while collecting firewood. The area consisted of several small frozen lakes framed by coniferous as well as beech woods.
Once back at camp we went to bed for what on my behalf would turn out to be a restless night. I was awakened several times by loud cracks and strange sounds I couldn’t relate to in my drowsiness. After a while I realized that the sounds were coming from the frozen lake just 20 meters away. At about 5.30 in the morning I got up just as the sun started to rise. Those of you who have been following this blog for the last month knows that I recorded a few sessions of cracking ice, but nothing I’ve heard before comes close to the sounds that the ice on Listersjön emitted. Have a listen at these extracts (headphones recommended for best results);

 

When finished with the ice recording many of the forests inhabitants had awakened. Birds where singing as the sun was rising so I grabbed my gear and went up on a small crest just behind camp to record some birdsong, in the meantime I took the opportunity to warm up in the sunlight.

 

Spring will surely prevail sooner or later.

About load and carrying

This is what I brought with me:

-Sony PCM-D50
-Rolls PB224
-2 x Røde NT1-As
-Aquarian H2a-hydrophone
-Sennheiser headphones
-Camera tripod with DIY-shockmounts for the NT1-As
-2 x DIY-windscreens for the NT1-As
-2 x Røde WS2 Windscreens
-Goniometer
-2 x socket wrenches
-4 x 9v-batteries
-8 x AA-batteries
+Everything else you need not to starve or freeze to death when hiking in temperatures sub zero.

As you can see this gear is far from portable in the sense that you would not like to carry it with you for longer periods of time. However when out trekking for just a couple of days you’ll be fine, even during winter when you need to bring a heavier sleeping bag, more clothes and so on.
What I did was to distribute the weight like this: On my back I had the backpack containing everything excepts the audio gear which I carried in a camera-bag on my chest strapped to the backpacks shoulder straps. This somewhat evened out the load even though the strain on my shoulders increased some.
When going out trekking later on this year I’ll probably try to fit my audio gear into the backpack as I think this will put more of the pressure on my hips where it doesn’t feel so burdensome. The downside of this will be a bulkier backpack as well as the fact that it will be harder to reach and assemble your gear quickly when needed.
Some of you reading this probably have vast experience trailing different kinds of gear around and I’d be more than happy if you want to share your experiences with me.

Despite bulky equipment I’m glad that I made the decision to bring all the gear with me as the memory of this audio intense spring hike will live on forever.

Geek note: Both recordings made with 2 x Røde NT1-As (ORTF position, angled 110 degrees 17 cm apart) -> Rolls PB224 -> Sony PCM-D50

As you might have noticed I haven’t updated the blog for a while as I’ve been busy lately working on a couple of projects leaving almost no time to go out sound hunting.

Anyway, here’s a sign of the oncoming spring; a drifting ice floe down at the marina in Limhamn recorded underwater with a hydrophone.

The thumping sounds you hear comes from the floe slowly nudging against a boulder in the breakwater.

Geek note: Aquarian H2a-XLR -> Sony PCM-D50 (using a XLR->3,5mm adapter)

Starting out tomorrow I’m going for a short hike in Blekinge over the weekend, hopefully this will give me the opportunity to get some nature recordings for a sound installation I’m working on as well as some stuff to post here.