Wannabe from Los Angeles


Joemc
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Hi, just joined.  I'm interested in getting a drone for recreational videography, but wondering where I'm going to fly it. I saw the uavcoach article on the 5 best places to fly drones in Los Angeles.  One of the list is Point Fermin Park.  That'd be wonderful, because I live very close by.  

But Point Fermin Park is part of the Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, and their policy is the same as the county policy, which, if I understand correctly, is basically is that they are only allowed in designated areas; they mention Santa Fe Dam Rec. Area and Whittier Narrows.  

So am I missing anything?  Overthinking?  I'd love to fly at Pt. Fermin!

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

There are a lot of variables you need to take into consideration for owning and flying a drone.  

Do you know the speed limit on the 101 or the 405?  Obviously its 65 but no one drives 65 in the LA area.  Depending on time of day they drive 80 or 30.  So are all those drivers breaking the law?  Technically yes but most go with the flow of traffic which is rarely 65. 

My point is that if your a person that drives 65 because that's the law you might have a difficult time finding places to fly in LA.  If you use common sense as a guide and can "go with the flow" LA is a great place to fly drones.  

On 6/13/2021 at 6:18 PM, Joemc said:

I'd love to fly at Pt. Fermin!

Why do you want to fly there?  Its a nice park but doesn't look any more interesting than lots of other places to fly.  I stay away from parks as much as possible, too many liberal idiots in parks that think its their job to tell you what you can and can't do.  Its easier to just stay away from them.  

It also depends on what your hoping to accomplish with flying a drone.  If you want to do aerial photography for YouTube videos etc, then a small MAVIC2Pro is a good choice.  Small enough to launch from just about anywhere, doesn't attract much attention when its flying and if you are careful how you fly it not likely to seriously injure anyone if it crashes.  Phantoms have a bad rap, they're a little bigger, white, louder and stand out more without giving you any improvement in image quality.

If your hoping to do more professional aerial the next size up would be an Inspire2.  DJI is sunsetting this product line so spares parts, batteries and accessories will be harder to find and more expensive.  Plus they are not quiet and much more noticeable flying around.  

Anytime you fly anything there's some risk involved.  The challenge is that when flying a UAV remotely you are extending that risk to other people without them accepting the risk.  When your driving everyone else who's driving on the same road share the risk.  

I regularly fly over a state park, is it legal - no, but that doesn't make me unsafe.  The only Park Ranger to ever say anything to me was flying a MAVIC shooting aerial of the park.  Fortunately the other Rangers recognized the hypocrisy of his actions and after pointing out how much better my footage looked than his they just told me to pick up my toy and go home. 

Common sense and being respectful of the proximity of other people goes a long way to enjoying flying in LA.  I've flown downtown at sunrise on a Sunday, there was no one there to complain.           

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49 minutes ago, Av8Chuck said:

There are a lot of variables you need to take into consideration for owning and flying a drone.  

Do you know the speed limit on the 101 or the 405?  Obviously its 65 but no one drives 65 in the LA area.  Depending on time of day they drive 80 or 30.  So are all those drivers breaking the law?  Technically yes but most go with the flow of traffic which is rarely 65. 

My point is that if your a person that drives 65 because that's the law you might have a difficult time finding places to fly in LA.  If you use common sense as a guide and can "go with the flow" LA is a great place to fly drones.  

Why do you want to fly there?  Its a nice park but doesn't look any more interesting than lots of other places to fly.  I stay away from parks as much as possible, too many liberal idiots in parks that think its their job to tell you what you can and can't do.  Its easier to just stay away from them.  

It also depends on what your hoping to accomplish with flying a drone.  If you want to do aerial photography for YouTube videos etc, then a small MAVIC2Pro is a good choice.  Small enough to launch from just about anywhere, doesn't attract much attention when its flying and if you are careful how you fly it not likely to seriously injure anyone if it crashes.  Phantoms have a bad rap, they're a little bigger, white, louder and stand out more without giving you any improvement in image quality.

If your hoping to do more professional aerial the next size up would be an Inspire2.  DJI is sunsetting this product line so spares parts, batteries and accessories will be harder to find and more expensive.  Plus they are not quiet and much more noticeable flying around.  

Anytime you fly anything there's some risk involved.  The challenge is that when flying a UAV remotely you are extending that risk to other people without them accepting the risk.  When your driving everyone else who's driving on the same road share the risk.  

I regularly fly over a state park, is it legal - no, but that doesn't make me unsafe.  The only Park Ranger to ever say anything to me was flying a MAVIC shooting aerial of the park.  Fortunately the other Rangers recognized the hypocrisy of his actions and after pointing out how much better my footage looked than his they just told me to pick up my toy and go home. 

Common sense and being respectful of the proximity of other people goes a long way to enjoying flying in LA.  I've flown downtown at sunrise on a Sunday, there was no one there to complain.           

Thank you very much for your reply.  I've been looking into the local laws and I'm sort of coming to the same conclusion as you are saying.  They are confusing and very subject to interpretation, as well as sometime directly conflicting with FAA control of airspace.  So my idea is that the laws are there so that if an irate citizen calls a cop, he'll have some basis for asking you to vacate, but is not likely to cite you if you are polite.  I can live with that.  

The reason I'm focusing on Pt. Fermin is because it is on a 100ft cliff overlooking the ocean, and it seems fun to get footage of the cliffs/ocean from a different vantage point, it is not FAA-controlled airspace, and it is walking distance from my house.  I'm sure there are better places and I'd sure like to hear your suggestions on that.

I'm getting a drone for aerial photos for Youtube etc.  I'm thinking of the Mini 2.  I envision myself launching it from the sidewalk (easement?) at the corner of Pt Fermin park, buzzing it out 50-100 feet from where I am (at that point nobody will hear it, I think), about 100 ft over the ocean, and explore, unobstrusively.  Perhaps I'll hide behind a bush. <<grin>> 

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