End of May 2020, after three months of confinement the first weekend of freedom was coming. My buddies and I were thirsty for a bike trip and so we started planning. We couldn’t go far because of the restrictions, but the urge to spend the night under the stars was strong, and we decided to go to a reservoir 35 kilometers from the civilization.
Picture a city with a mighty river but with an absolutely dry landscape, completely surrounded by steppe, continually swept by a dry and strong wind, and you will get an idea of Zaragoza and of our reasons to go to a quiet and cold place.
This was going to be the first time in two months to spend more than an hour outside of my home, and obviously I wanted to take some pictures. But I needed to travel light and didn’t have much space in my bag, so the SLR was out of the question. The camera I chose for this little trip was my Olympus Trip 35.
It’s small, light and the only thing to do to take a picture is to estimate the distance from your subject, what I call a ‘guess & shot’. The Trip 35 is a scale focus camera that packs a really nice 40mm f2.8 lens, a wide enough focal for landscape and fast enough for outdoor photography. It has a few tricks under the sleeve which you can read about in this reviews here and here.
I loaded it with Argenti Vario Scale-x, set the ISO and I was ready for the ride.
We left the city after lunch with no hurry whatsoever and I was glad to have the Trip 35, I could take a snapshot any time we stopped to check directions, or when somebody had to secure their falling cargo with bungee cords. And most importantly, I could shoot from my bicycle without even slowing down, as the shutter speed of 1/200 in automatic mode is enough to get a sharp image when moving. I like that a lot, you get a glimpse of what goes on, not a static moment but a moving one.
As far as the film of choice goes, it was my first time using the Argenti Vario Scale-X, and because of that I was a little nervous, but at the moment it was the only ‘high speed’ film I had in the fridge. This film is made for a spanish store, Foto R3, by Agfa, if I’m not mistaken. It supposedly is good from 100 to 800 ISO and can be used for reversal process, which I didn’t try.
I shot it at 400, as I wanted to be able to take pics at dusk and down. I developed it the next day in D76 1+1 at home, and what I relief I felt when I saw the little pictures emerging from the tank. First time trying a film is always a tense moment for me. I must say I like it a lot, in my eyes it has a good tonality and mid tone range and I look forward to get a few more rolls.
Our trip was a lot of fun and the Trip captured it perfectly, the no frills, no bell and whistles nature of the camera let me enjoy every minute while making some memories to be shared and treasured. It really lives up to its name and I think I can understand why it was so popular back then.
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