We gather enough courage to finally launch our new drone from the boat. Everything went well until we tried to land.

For my last big birthday, Lori bought me something I’ve been bugging her for a long time for! A DJI Mini 2 drone. I’ve always loved drones and have had a number of them over the years. And yes, I’ve crashed all of them. However, the drones today are much different. You no longer have to carefully and gingerly balance them and compensate for slight gusts. The new ones just float there, automatically, when you release the controls.

And this is what we bought the drone for. Pictures like this.

Anchored Off Sugar Island

And videos like the one I posted in Foggy Friend: Capriccio.

Up until today we’ve launched the drone from dry, solid, land. Today we attempted to launch and land from the boat. We created a wonderful video of our boat anchored off Sugar Island.

But you will see the expression on Lori’s face toward the end. The plan was for her to catch the drone, with her hands. I’ve done this several times myself, but on dry, solid, land. It seemed easy. What could go wrong? Well, I went wrong, that’s what. I had experience catching the drone, but Lori never did. In my excitement to fly the drone I put Lori’s hands at risk. We should have practiced this on dry land.

The end result, not shown in the video above, is that Lori grabbed the drone. The drone fought back. It thought it was being blown off course and it bit her hand. I’ve had the blades hit my hand before and it stung but didn’t do any damage. So when I heard her say “oww!” I thought it was the same. Until I saw the blood dripping onto the deck. Here’s her fingers after we cleaned up the blood.

Drone Scars

The blade sliced four nice lines into the tip of her finger. Now at this point, you would think that Lori would have thrown the drone off the boat and then me. But she laughed it off and said next time she’s wearing her sailing gloves!

Moral of the story. Drone blades are scary and they can hurt! Practice your catches on dry land before attempting on a bouncing boat. Also heard of some other solutions. Attaching a vertical bar under the drone for catching. Use a fishing net. For now, we are going to stick to launching and landing on solid ground.