Ask Eddy: Caught on Film?

You've got questions, Eddy's got answers

Illustration by Aaron McKinney
Illustration by Aaron McKinney

How do I retrieve the footage from my smashed GoPro?

Eddy has a long history with point-of-view cameras, starting in the ‘90s when he filmed his rounds in the county canoe jousting championships by duct taping a camcorder in a Ziploc bag to his hockey helmet. For counterbalance, he taped a one-pound flask of Yukon Jack to the other side. Later, he pioneered “drones” by fitting his 8-year-old cousin Stan with the setup and shooing him into the girls’ locker room at Big Lake Community College. (Eddy’s drone-work also documented Alderman Stone’s romance with Stan’s mother, drastically altering the 1998 mayoral race.) So it’s no surprise Eddy is all in on the POV craze. Last summer, when Operation Beaver Cam went terribly awry and Eddy had to wriggle into the lodge to retrieve his smashed, waterlogged camera, he turned to an outside specialist to retrieve the footage.

“We get water-logged memory cards all the time,” says David Zimmerman, president of data retrieval specialists LC Technology International. The company specializes in retrieving data from destroyed camera memory cards, and has even saved footage from burnt cards. “With the hard cases we usually take the cards apart to access the chip,” he says. “If corroded, we’ll soak the chip in an antioxidizing solution. It’s a labor-intensive process.” The company has about an 80 percent success rate with destroyed memory cards, says Zimmerman. The service costs a couple of hundred bucks, but, when you’re talking about blackmail footage, that’s just the cost of doing business.

What’s Eddy’s favorite warm weather paddling spot for winter?

Eddy can’t support fleeing south during the winter like some wimpy snowbird, unless of course you paddle the whole way like Eddy’s heroes Don Starkell or Verlen Kruger. What you ought to do this winter is hunker down in the shop, re-canvas your canoe and cook pemmican for next summer’s expeditions. Stitch your coonskin cap GoPro mount so the guys at the Rendezvous don’t call you “anachronistic” again.

Not for you? Well then, how about a nice trip through the Houston Ship Channel? Don’t mind the supertankers, canoes totally have the right-of-way. (Editor’s Note: This is false. According to the Coast Guard, the larger vessel always has the right- of-way in constrained waters like the channel.) Practice your kayak rolls in Oklahoma’s Grand Lake of the Cherokees. (Canoe & Kayak cannot condone submersing oneself in Grand Lake of the Cherokees, which contains toxic blue-green algae.) Head to the Everglades, lasso a manatee, and enjoy the tow out to the Florida Keys. (Do NOT harass manatees. Those convicted of violating the Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act of 1978 face a maximum fine of $500 and/or 60 days in jail.)

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