Video: A Trail Dog's Perspective on Covid-19

May 18, 2020
by Dan Schwarz  


Tarantino gets it. He once said he could make an entire movie just filming Brad Pitt driving a car listening to good music. Watching my dog run has the same effect for me. I don't know why but it's mesmerizing. Satisfying. I'm a big hater of excessive slo-mo in biking edits but add a dog and I can't get enough. I almost went over the bars once trying to film Ludlow with my phone. So I got a GoPro Max and started filming. When I realized how good the stabilization feature was I got a harness and Ludlow became my camerabitch.

Shortly afterward we plunged into the Covid chaos. As a sales rep for Ion (among other brands) my hours got cut by 75%. I had lots of time for riding but Ludlow became my sole riding companion. Which is kind of essential for a project like this because let's be honest no one wants to ride with the camera-wearing dog or the kook who keeps fiddling with it. I kept filming Ludlow and she me with no real plans for the footage.

Over dinner one night my family was discussing what Ludlow must make of the whole Covid/isolation thing. Our lives have been so profoundly impacted but to her it mostly means that she: 1. Has us around her all the time, and 2. Goes on a lot of rides. These are Ludlow's two favorite things besides bacon. We joked about how much Covid has improved her life, but it got me thinking that she must sense the weirdness. That I actively avoid people on the trail, that friends swing by but never come in, that things just aren't normal. Anyway, I realized I could edit the enormous amount of footage I'd accrued into a mediocre video touching on the Covid response and a dog's response to that response. Also biking. Because honestly that's been a large part of how I cope.

Just a note, I'm a huge supporter of 'ride where you live' during these times. Most of this was filmed on trails I ride to from my house. The few shots that required driving were filmed in January/February before all this hit. All filming was done within the guidelines of riding locally and responsibly when these rules were in effect, and I recommend everyone continue to follow these simple rules.

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52 Comments

  • 33 2
 Fuck me, I ride with two dogs, if anyone in southern ontario wants to make a sick edit, im sure i can throw together 4 or 5 go pros and atleast 2 trails dogs....ill buy beer and steaks... hookers and blow depending on final product ...
  • 4 0
 lol, I ride with two on occasion as well and I can't edit worth a dam
  • 2 0
 I heard your dogs are faster than you, who would want to film that?
  • 2 0
 I just logged in to upvote your comment Sir!
  • 3 0
 I’ll consider. Please send picture of hookers first.
  • 18 0
 Actually thought this article was going to feature @IamTheDogEzra
  • 12 4
 Quick note: That area of southern WA is home to some endangered birds that nest on the ground. If you're traveling there with a dog, be sure to ask around before you let your dog run off leash.

I'm *pretty* sure nesting time is spring. Not 100% though.

I also once had a baby pygmy owl fall out of its nest and land on my helmet there (it was fine). It's a pretty magical spot, that Columbia River Gorge.
  • 9 0
 I love to ride with my dog - and I am from Ludlow in Great Britain. Is there a PB tenuous link badge I can have?
  • 6 1
 love dogs but on my local trails there not allowed but theres a worrying trend starting with people riding ithe trails with them anyway and as it gets quite busy i have had several near misses with dogs just running out in front of me when owners haven't been in control of them and have stopped in really stupid places. I know its not the dogs fault just the dumb owners disobeying the rules. I think if you ride on quieter trails then sure its probably a lot safer but where i live its a real hazard.....that and the dog shite on the trails to...
  • 2 5
 First, get over yourself. Second, rather have the dog OFF LEASH as if a walker goes one way, you another and the dog another, everyone gets hurt. I would rather just you get hurt.

As for shit on the trails? Rather a dog than bear, squirrel shit? Gu packages, water bottles and now, retarted latex gloves and more ignorant, useless face masks.
  • 2 0
 @RoadStain: I think you need to consider that it can be quite different here in the UK. MTB trail centres (assuming thats the reference) aren't generally full of walkers, often dogs are not allowed on trails and they can get pretty busy.

Also bear shit isn't generally an issue.....
  • 1 3
 @eddieantifreeze: :-)

Since our (idiotic) "Social Distancing" our trails have been packed to the gills...it is a good thing. Horses, dogs, birds, and yes....bear.
  • 3 0
 I love riding with my dogs, though one seems to wander off, so it's the Healer who gets the most trail time. Ridgebacks are cool dogs, but a bit too protective at times, but this one seems nice enough. Like most mountain bikers, we want a dog that can keep up, go long distances, follows directions, and will last forever. Sadly, dogs that tic all the boxes are rare and no dog lasts forever ... My old Aussie is 18yo this summer, he did a thirty miles walkabout three summers ago, got a call after three days that he needed to be picked up. Yeah.
  • 1 0
 English pointer
  • 1 0
 Yeah, it's funny how Healers tend to do that. They just sort of vibe out and disappear for a few hours or days. Might be the dingo in them. Walkabout is the perfect concept to describe it (Aussie here.)
  • 6 0
 doggo is a fan of french lines i see!
  • 1 0
 Ha - was going to post same thing....."French dog I see"...damn it Smile
  • 1 0
 My thoughts exactly, she was like "screw you Dan I'm taking the short route"
  • 4 0
 Haha. Originally I was going to name the edit "My lazy cheating bitch" because she cuts so many corners.
  • 1 0
 I have 3 dogs and 1 of them hate COVID. All parks in the hood were closed, He made some pacific demo sitting&not moving near to any park.
For 1 month every walk with the dogs was a pain in the ass,he refused to walk to any place was not the park. The other 2 didn´t care a shit about the park.
We have some tense moments,I don´t know how to manage the dog,even the other two have some arguments with the little bastard not walking/demo thing.
  • 1 0
 How did you train your dog to ride with you? I have been slowly training my pup but she likes to get in front sometimes and follow other cyclists. It can be a pain but I haven't given up!

Great job showcasing the gorge. That hill has some great views and good potential for future lines.

See ya on the trails!
Cheers!
  • 1 0
 Thanks. I started her riding with me and the kids for super short (sub-5 minute) pedals when she was 6 or 8 months old, gradually working her into her first real ride when she was a little over a year. I yelled "scooch" whenever she got in the way, sometimes tapping her rear end with my front tire, and she quickly got it, that's now her code word to get the hell out of the way. That said she loves being VERY close to bikes so she still gets tagged on occasion.
  • 4 0
 I needed this today. Thank you!! Riding with our pups keeps me sane.
  • 3 0
 Always fun to see local trails pop up in vids, I miss Post can't wait for it to reopen, Hidden at Syncline too!
  • 2 0
 Fun video Smile we feel the same watching our trail dog run, something magical about watching him in the environment he was born for.
  • 2 0
 I’d love to know more about the dog’s harness and camera setup. The stabilization is great.
  • 1 0
 My guess is a 360 degree camera, allows for the pan shots and stabilization.
  • 5 0
 Whole edit was filmed with a single GoPro Max. The stabilization is insane. The harness was the GoPro Fetch, it gets mediocre reviews online but about 5 minutes of tailoring made it pretty spot-on. Only other tool was the GoPro handlebar mount.
  • 1 0
 @alsager: How long did it take for your pup to get used to the harass? I've been trying with my dog but she just kinda of freezes with the harness on. With it off she runs like a lightning bolt!!
  • 1 0
 @biffmofo: she didn't love it at first but after the first ride I think she associated it with going for a run so she would be stoked when I put it on her.
  • 3 0
 Makes me want to ride Post, haven't been there in ages!
  • 1 0
 I like Post a lot. But riding across the river might be my number 1 spot in the world for when I need a ride to clear my head and get perspective on life.
  • 3 0
 “Best Pandemic ever” - my cat.
  • 1 0
 Love me some Ludlow cam. Nice work Danny =) You need to give your narrator a raise, though - crushing it. Must be 3 boys worth of bedtime stories...
  • 1 0
 Love that breed , Ridgeback. We are on our 2nd one. Smart as a whip !!! Both have been cross breeds with labs.
  • 2 5
 I once got bit while riding by a 125lb. Ridgie named Rocky. Boy knew he was in trouble as he dropped to the ground immediately. For about 30 seconds, I really got mad, REALLY wanted to kill him. But his owners' brother calmed me down and I put the knife away. After that I couldn't help but love that big doggie, plus the dude was a reservoir keeper and I had free access to a boat for life! That's better than any dog bite lawsuit!
I got a serious question about all dogs these days.....is it safe to pet somebody' cute doggie ? can they have CV 19 on their fur? OT, I know, but I wonder about what all you PBer's out there think.
  • 3 0
 Nice Video Danny!
  • 1 0
 Haha. Thanks Nikki.
  • 2 0
 Dog videos>people videos
  • 2 0
 Great video of local trails and perfect trail dog.
  • 1 0
 great life, yours and dogs as well. i love that part of world. thanks for perspective
  • 1 0
 Jealous of that dog. Wish I would deal casing every jump that good. Not that I dare to even jump...
  • 4 4
 Doggo..... could not care less about this flu hysteria. You can’t scare doggo.
  • 2 0
 Dog is love ..
  • 2 1
 having an off leashed beast is a cite-able offense in here
  • 1 0
 Jealous as hell, wish my dog would follow me out on the trails...
  • 1 0
 That was EXCELLENT! Loved the squirrel
  • 1 0
 lol at song choice
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