Don and I took our lunch on a nature trail yesterday, looking for animals to shoot … photographically, of course. We tried to move along the trail quietly so as not to disturb and frighten-off our quarry. So there we were, standing on the trail, looking around us when this incredibly loud pecking erupted from above us. I was startled, to put it mildly. Looking up, we saw this lovely read-head. As near as I can tell from the various birdwatching sites on the Web, it’s a yellow-bellied sapsucker. Yes, that’s a real bird rather than a name made up to sound funny.
4M6C0211.CR2: 5D Mk.III, EF 400mm 1:5.6L @ 1/1250, f/5.6, 400 ISO
When it started pecking again, the forest paparazzi were out in full force as shutters clacked in continuous mode trying to capture its staccato movement. As shown here, its head is back, primed for a peck.
So yes, you can be nice to the ZR1, and it likes that. Or you can nail the throttle, launching the tach needle into the next county. At which point the sky cracks open and your face melts, like that scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, only without the Nazis and a little more Holy Power of a Thousand Millennia raining down on upon humanity. Below 5500 rpm, the noise is a thundering boom. Above it, and all the way to the 6500-rpm redline, you hear nothing but a deafening, gut-trembling snarl, like a Stuka dive-bombing your lower intestine. It’s intoxicating. When you wake up, you’re two, maybe three time zones away, with no memory of what just happened. And a distinct desire to do it again, immediately.