Molokai Mule Ride

Buzzy Sproat has been an all around Paniolo (cowboy) and one of Hawaii’s top mule trainers since 1973. He conducts tours down the steep slopes of Molokai to the famous town of Kalaupapa and we joined him and a group of tourists for a day of mule riding. The most challenging part of this shoot was that sections of the mule trail are so narrow that it’s almost impossible to have the time to set up a tripod and keep the tour going. I opted to bring along a mono-pod instead so I could stay ahead of the pack, hop off my mule, get into position and film just in time for the others to pass. The problem is that you have to constantly try to stay ahead of everyone else and I had no choice but to ask the group to stop at certain points and wait for my cue to proceed, especially at the very scenic spots. Unfortunately, you take the risk of spoiling the flow of the tour for everyone but just shooting from the vantage point of my mule’s back would have been totally boring. You need to capture the landscape surrounding the switch-back descent along the cliffs. Very exhausting shoot but it was a fun edit. Interested in Buzzy’s tour? Visit the Molokai Mule Ride website.

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