How to do selfies on a bike tour

Taking a photo of yourself can be quite a difficult thing during a solo bike tour. And it can end up in some loop like self-references, as you will see in a minute.

In this case I was cycling the Great Ocean Road in Australia, when I came across a spot with quite a nice perspective. I decided it is worth getting off my bike for a photo of the beautiful road.


But when I saw the result, I thought it might look even better if a cyclist was in the picture. And since I was solo travelling, I found no other person than me for that job.

This is the result.


But wait, who took the photo?

Well, it was the camera.

I am carrying my full frame Nikon D610 while cycling. In my handlebar bag I have got the body with my favorite lense, which is the ultra sharp 16-35 mm. And in my low rider bag I have got another lense, the 28-300, which I don’t use as often because I really like wide angle shots.

Besides the camera I am also carrying a small Cullmann tripod.

For the above photo I was using the 10 second self timer of the camera. This means once I pressed the shutter I really have to speed up, run to my bike, hop on it, go in a circle and be in the very right position exactly 10 seconds later. Not earlier and not later.

Does that always work out? No!

Does that almost always work out? No!

In other words I usually need like 10 or more attempts to get the shot right.

A little trick that helps me a lot is to shoot all photos in RAW (which I am doing anyway) and to use the bracket mode of the camera. My Nikon does three brackets with as little differences as possible (that is one step). The camera then shoots not one but three photos, all with slightly different exposures. But since RAW is quite forgiving, I can later even out those differences. (This is then done with Lightroom on my MacBook Air, that also sits in one of my bags).


But wait, who then took the above photo of me taking the photo?

Well, I am also carrying another camera with me. It is more a point and shoot thing for quick access.

As I mentioned before, getting a good shot often requires a lot of time and energy. In other words: I am often missing opportunities for good photos by just being too lazy or too tired. Or too slow.

That’s what the pocket camera is good for, since it literally fits into the pocket of my pants (well, not those I am wearing in the photo though). And it allows being used with one hand only (even while cycling).

I rather take a medium quality photo of an excellent opportunity than taking a perfect quality shot not at all.

And honestly, for Facebook and or even for a blog like this one, a pocket camera does really supply a sufficient quality.

Sometimes I am using the Canon G7X, which I love for its well made usability. But on this tour I was carrying my Sony RX 100 III, which is way more fragile and less easy to use (I am always pushing some buttons by accident), but it has the advantage that I can charge it via USB, which I have available on my bike while cycling.

And for my pocket camera, which also has a flip screen for selfies, I am carrying a small selfie stick, as you can see in the photo below.

And his is how my setting looked like when I took the above photo of me taking the photo of me.


But wait, who then took this photo of me taking a photo of me taking a photo of me?