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YouTube Weekly VLOG | EP20 | Fort Union NM | The Volcanoes at Petroglyph NM | DJI OM4 Gimbal

Updated: Oct 8, 2021


Albuquerque, New Mexico while on contract in Fort Defiance Arizona (staying in Gallup, NM)


For my day off this week, we used an appointment for Hiker in Albuquerque to visit Fort Union National Monument and the fourth area of Petroglyph National Monument - The Volcanoes Day Use Area. I also show the unboxing and demo of the DJI OM 4 iPhone Gimbal - replacing my DJI Osmo Mobile 3 which after dropping I was unable to repair.

Fort Union National Monument

Knocking another one off my NPS exploration map, the ruins of Fort Union lie in a windswept wide open valley along the National Historic Santa Fe Trail - an almost 900 mile trade route starting in Franklin Missouri and ending in Santa Fe New Mexico. Dogs are permitted on leash and this is a beautiful walk among the remaining structures. It was incredibly windy while we were there and I ended up having to do post recording voice-over audio. Due to damage from a drop, I was also without my trusty DJI Osmo Mobile 3 so the footage here is a little shaky but the iPhone XS Max stabilization does a pretty good job. Deer can be seen running out over the open prairie. And as always the NPS Park staff were friendly and very helpful.

Petroglyph National Monument | Volcanoes Day Use Area

This is beautiful open area overlooking Albuquerque with three small hills (the volcanoes) - there are no overt calderas but plenty of volcanic rocks strewn about. This was the fourth and last area of PNM that we’ve been able to explore (although Boca Negra Canyon only briefly) and I think I can say I feel like we’ve truly experienced this national monument in its entirety. The hike out to and around the volcanoes is a nice easy walk with a slight uphill ascent to the top of Black Volcano. Again dogs are welcome on leash which is typically the case in national monuments versus national parks.

Unboxing the DJI OM 4 iPhone Gimbal

Lastly I get to unbox and demo my new gimbal, replacing the broken DJI Osmo Mobile 3. Unfortunately this came on Wednesday afternoon so I wasn’t able to use it for the adventures earlier in the week. I had dropped the OM 3 while getting footage in South Carolina and the phone holding head ended up getting damaged - the lower phone clip lost it’s spring and it proved very difficult to get into to repair. With the lower spring lost the upper clip overcompensated and off-balanced the phone which caused the motors to continually fail and the gimbal to shut down after a short time of use.

There’s a couple of benefits I’m already LOVING about this new gimbal

  • The OM 4 is slightly lighter at 390 grams versus the OM 3 at 405 grams

  • The more compact design means it can stow in a pack or back pocket much easier - it also makes collapsing the assembly less cumbersome as the mounting head no longer has to be aligned

  • The magnetic phone clip is a sleek metal and grips the phone tightly (with out without a case) and makes a solid connection with the mounting head - I can say I am NOT worried about this falling off

  • The ease of one-handedly magnetically attaching and detaching the phone is AWESOME - as I frequently use my phone for photography as well, this makes quick on the go assembly and disassembly a breeze

Why didn’t I go with the OM4 earlier? While I love magnetic implementations and the ideas behind this gimbal, I already use a magnetic-backed case for the phone to mount in the car and I was afraid the mount clip for the OM 4 would interfere. Turns out, it doesn’t at all, and easily holds to my car vent magnetic mount. In addition, the clip works with or without the case and right now I’m trying caseless as I love the feel of the iPhone without a case (I am not prone to dropping my phone so I’m not as concerned about the protection). All in all so far I am VERY happy with this new addition to my VLOGing setup.

Be creative and find your adventure this week!! ✌️😎



Audio: RODE VideoMic PRO+, RODE Wireless GO, Apple AirPods Pro, and Device Native Mics

Editing: Adobe Premier Pro (Creative Cloud)

Music: Epidemic Sound, MUSICBED, Soundstripe, YouTube Music Library

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