For the past 16 years, I’ve taken photographs of the Pumpkinvine Bike Ride, rather than riding in it. (I did ride the first two years.) We use these photographs in our August Friends of the Pumpkinvine newsletter, in the bike-ride brochure for the next year, on our website, blog and membership brochure. We also frequently get requests for trail photos from the Elkhart County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, the Chamber of Commerce or other publications, and I’m able to send a nice selection from the bike ride, since it is by far the time when there are more riders on the Pumpkinvine than at any other time of the year.
Besides myself, there were five others taking pictures: Branden Beachy, Danny Graber, Jim Loomis, Bruce Nethercutt and Ryan Smith. We divided the territory up so that some of us were on the Pumpkinvine Nature Trail, while others drove the sections of the routes on the county roads.
I like to take photos on the Pumpkinvine Nature Trail but change which section I cover from year-to-year. This year I was on the trail between Goshen and Middlebury. I started out taking photos south of State Road 4, a section that I’d never photographed during the bike ride. There’s nice curve in that section that allows me to see a number of riders at the same time and see separation between them than is the case on a straight part of the trail. I like to capture groups of riders, if possible, as well as various ages.
As I was standing beside the trail, I began to notice that there were a lot of mosquitoes attacking my bare arms and face. I swatted them away as best I could, but found that it was making it difficult to concentrate on the riders. After I’d taken what seemed like a good sample of riders in that section, I went back to my van and made a quick trip the CVS in Goshen for insect repellant.