Wet & Wild: Football and Futbol in the Rain


This weekend was a fun one. IF you consider shooting two games in the pouring rain fun, then it was an absolute blast. After all, it is the Pacific Northwest.

The rains were relentless. Starting, stopping, hard, soft, cold, warm. Typical Pacific Northwest autumnal weather. Now you know why many around here call it “The NorthWet.”

Failed Reception

Lummi's Free Borsey (11) takes down Oakville's Casey Davis (16) as he attempts a reception during the second quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Lummi’s Free Borsey (11) takes down Oakville’s Casey Davis (16) as he attempts a reception during the second quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Friday I shot the Blackhawks from Lummi Nation School  against the Acorns of Oakville High School in Division 2B playoff.

On Saturday, I headed to Sedro-Woolley High School to photograph the Squalicum girl’s soccer against Shorecrest in the Class 2A Nortwest District Championship game.

Almost Sacked

Lummi's Dashawn Lawrence (10) tackles the Oakville quarterback during the second quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Lummi’s Dashawn Lawrence (10) tackles the Oakville quarterback during the second quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

To battle the weather and still get good images from the game, I wrapped my gear in a plastic trash bag. I first cut a hole in one of the bottom corners the size of my lens hood. I pushed the hood of the lens through then used gaffer’s tape to secure it.

Get Outta My Way!

Lummi's Hank Hoskins (24), right, pushes off Oakville's Casey Davis (16) during the first quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Lummi’s Hank Hoskins (24), right, pushes off Oakville’s Casey Davis (16) during the first quarter on Friday evening Nov. 6, 2015, at Lummi Nation School in Lummi, Wash. Lummi defeated Oakville 56 to 8. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Then I cut tiny holes where the camera straps would go though. The rest of the bag I let flop over the body for protection from the rain when I didn’t have it to my eye. The extra I used to cover my head to prevent the camera body from getting wet. It mostly worked.

While shooting, I had two bodies so I did this to both. On Saturday when I shot the Squalicum girls soccer team against Shorecrest, I had to do the same thing. But the rain was worse.

Chest Bump!

Squalicum's Kim Door (16) stops the ball during the first half of the Class 2A Northwest District Championship on Saturday evening Nov. 7, 2015, at Sedro-Woolley High School in Sedro-Woolley, Wash. Squalicum defeated Shorecrest 2 to 1. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Squalicum’s Kim Door (16) stops the ball during the first half of the Class 2A Northwest District Championship on Saturday evening Nov. 7, 2015, at Sedro-Woolley High School in Sedro-Woolley, Wash. Squalicum defeated Shorecrest 2 to 1. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

And even though I dressed for the rain, I was soaked to the bone 10 minutes into the games. Ahhh the trials and tribulations of the sports photographer.

Head Bump

Shorecrest's Julia Strand (21) battles with Squalicum's Kim Door during the first half of the Class 2A Northwest District Championship on Saturday evening Nov. 7, 2015, at Sedro-Woolley High School in Sedro-Woolley, Wash. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Shorecrest’s Julia Strand (21) battles with Squalicum’s Kim Door during the first half of the Class 2A Northwest District Championship on Saturday evening Nov. 7, 2015, at Sedro-Woolley High School in Sedro-Woolley, Wash. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Lummi was a powerhouse on the field. They dominated every major play. Oakville just couldn’t break through either the offensive or defensive line. Lummi went on to win 56-8 to advance to the state playoffs.

But to be fair, even in 8-man football, having only 11 players on the roster is a major disadvantage.

The Squalicum girls continue their pursuit of State Champion. The won the game 2 to 1 to claim the Class 2A Northwest District championship. Perhaps a repeat of their state championship is in order.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

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Paul “pablo” Conrad

Follow me on these various Social Networks:

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Paul Conrad is an award-winning freelance photographer living in Bellingham north of Seattle, WA, in the Pacific Northwest. His work has been published in newspapers and magazine throughout the United States and in Europe. He is available for assignments anywhere in the Pacific Northwest.

His clients include Getty Images, Wire Image, AirBnB, The Bellingham Herald, and many local business in Whatcom County. Previous clients are Associated Press, the New York Times, L.A. Times, Denver Post, Rocky Mountain News, and many others.

His specialty is photojournalism covering news, sports, and editorial portraits, he also is skilled in family portraiture, high school senior portraits, and weddings.

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