Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Adventure is the spice of life

Ever since I was a kid I've loved to travel, and thankfully as a gymnast I had the opportunity to travel the world competing and representing Canada on the world stage.  Sadly during those years it seemed we spent most of the time in the gym and didn't always get to stop and appreciate some of the amazing spots we ended up in.  One of the best parts of mountain biking is that you're out there in nature (regardless of where you are) and it somehow seems a bit easier to just take it all in and revel in your surroundings.
Taking in the beauty that is Whistler | Photo: Claudio Olguin
After Crankworx I had the opportunity to work on a few different photo media projects that, while not in crazy exotic places, still allowed me some time to remember why I moved to B.C from Ontario in the first place.  We don't always have to go far to find beauty and it's often right there in your own backyard.
Modeling the 6" riding sock | Photo: Claudio Olguin
I've been working with a new brand out of Argentina this year called "Zettz"...They make technical riding and training socks and the most amazing women's sports bras (and are looking to expand to chamois and other fun stuff)....It's pretty cool to work with a new brand that is so passionate about cycling and is rider owned and operated.  Eze Faccio (founder of Zettz) travels to Whistler every year to ride and take in the sights and this year decided that there was no better place to host a Zettz photo shoot to capture some images that will be used as advertising pieces for the coming year.  
Technical 6" riding socks | Photo: Claudio Olguin
Reversible, seamless sport bras
Just a couple days later I got a call from Big Mountain Adventures, as there was a photographer in town doing a piece on the awesomeness that Whistler and the Sea To Sky corridor have to offer.  I thanked my lucky stars that I wasn't actually working and met up with Leslie Kehmeier to hit up some bike park favourites for an article she's writing that will be hitting the press in early spring of next year.
Descending through top of the world | Photo: Leslie Kehmeier
In the hustle and bustle of the Crankworx EWS I hadn't really had much time to enjoy all the sights at "the top of the world" trail, so it was pretty sweet to take in the views while we shot some iconic zones on the way down.  Big thanks to Leslie and Big Mountain Adventures for the call and I can't wait to read her piece.  
Enjoying the view
Leslie rippin' it up!
After a fun couple days shooting in the Whistler Bike park, enjoying some epic alpine vistas, I made my way east to Rossland for a Tourism Rossland photo shoot with some of the gang from the team.  This was uncharted territory for me and I was pretty pumped to shred some new trails and get to hang with some rad new people.  
Cam taking in the sun rise on Red Mountain
I arrived a few days into the trip to meet up with Ollie, Hailey, Mark and Cam and we got right into shooting the morning after I arrived.  Even though we battled some rainy days, Rossland did not disappoint and we had the chance to ride some sweet trails, take in some epic sun rises and sun sets, and had a pretty sweet pad to stay in!
Trails ending right in town at the local Rossland Beer Company...yes Please!
We rode some pretty fun single track trails on the first two days, and then Ollie, Cam and I set out on a recon adventure up Red Mountain on the second evening to see if we could get some sunset "nugs" with Rossland in the backdrop.  
The view of Rossland and Trail from "Poochie's Cabin" 
We found our way right to the top of Red, and got to ride down "Dread Head" at dusk which was pretty fuckin' rad!  The next morning we ventured back up Red and got to check out one of the old abandoned mines...Rossland and surrounding area was a huge gold Mining town back in the day and it was cool to take in some history during our ride.
Exploring the old mines
Afterwards we headed out on an adventure up the 7Summits trail and made our way to the top of Grey Mountain to take in one of the most amazing sunsets I'd ever seen...but it was a quick trip back down for an early night, since we were getting up for sunrise the next morning.  The whole experience brought me back to my early days as a rider, travelling around BC exploring new trails without any stresses of racing.  While I truly love the adrenaline of racing, it was awesome to have time to simply adventure and enjoy all the greatness nature has to offer.  
Taking in the epic sun set on Grey Mountain
Big thanks to Kootenay Mountain Bike Coaching for guiding us around and to Tourism Rossland for setting up our home-sweet-home for the week at the Red Shutter Inn.  Pretty stoked to have made some new riding friends and looking forward to more adventures!

Until next time...