Traveling sports photography in December

December was non-stop travel.

Columbus, Cleveland, Phoenix, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Denver… For more than a month straight I don’t think I spent more than three days home at a time. That’s the name of the game, but it certainly starts to take a toll that time of year. By this point in the season the travel had become fairly routine, aside from the surprise 24-hour Las Vegas Turnaround to be at a Pete Rose press conference on the Vegas Strip. I had never been to Las Vegas before, and I didn’t spend much time there this time, but I feel like I took in as much of it as I needed to.

The real downside to the Las Vegas assignment was catching a bad head cold that made the San Francisco trip just about unbearable. Flying when your head already feels like an overinflated beach ball is a miserable experience. I spent the majority of my down time on that trip closed up in the hotel bathroom trying to steam my sinuses open… it didn’t work, either.

I was able to kick that cold fairly quickly once I got back home and found the proper mix of sinus medicine (Advil Sinus, in the yellow package). Fortunately. Because we had three days at home before it was time to fly back west for Bengals-Broncos.

The Denver game was the coldest football game I’ve ever covered. Multiple, double and triple layers, gloves, hats, hand warmers… I was all set and prepared for the game, aside from forgetting to pack any shoes other than a lightweight pair of mesh-like running shoes. That was terrible, but over all the cold remained manageable, despite it killing my phone battery immediately.

December turned out to be a memorable month, and brought us Bengals-Steelers Part II.