Drone Photos Without a Drone

Last year when we were in Tucson, staying at the Lazy Days KOA, I wanted to take a decent photo of our campsite. The best shot would have been from a drone, but I didn’t think the KOA would allow me to fly my drone there. Not to mention that campground is in the airspace of a commercial airport and two(!) military airbases. There really was no chance of getting permission to fly a drone there!

So, what to do? I did some searching, and found photos that looked like photos from a drone that were taken without a drone. How did they do it?

One person that had some pretty interesting photos had taken the photos with a 10′ “Selfie” stick. That’s right, 10 feet! That sounded great to me, so I purchased one. Click here to get your own from Amazon (this is an affiliate link).

OK, it’s not really 10 feet. It’s actually 3 meters, or about 9.8 feet. It’s a carbon fiber pole that extends in sections, so you don’t have to extend it to the full 3 meters. When collapsed it’s only about ~18″ long.

When holding this pole up over my head, the camera is about 16′ above ground. Perfect for many photos.

I attached my GoPro to the end of the pole and used my cell phone to control the camera. I could see what the camera was seeing through my phone, and snap the shot (or shoot a video). It takes a little practice to hold the pole steady and aim it where you want.

The pole seems to be made well. It locks into position and stays there until you want to collapse it (a slight twist at each section releases it).

Using this pole, I was able to get some pretty nice shots of our KOA campsite, as seen below.

Tucson Lazy Days KOA campsite
Tucson Lazy Days KOA campsite

One thought on “Drone Photos Without a Drone”

  1. Hey there, Stebby. Loved reading about your new discovery. And it looks as though your research paid off — your campsite looks amazing. Take care, my friend, Kathie

    Like

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