‘’The goal for the video was to spend eight days in a clearcut; building, camping when we needed to and shooting all the lines we could create. My goal personally was to step up the production value from past edits. I know Brendan wanted to build things that could showcase his riding and I think we achieved our goals and then some.’’ – Aaron Larocque
It was 8:13pm on Saturday, August 20th and as we slowly made our way back to the truck, one bleary-eyed stare confirmed what I felt myself – we were exhausted. Trudging back with me are rider Brendan Howey, videographer Aaron Larocque, and photographer Mike Zinger. It was, without question, the most digging we’d ever done in one week and our collective bodies were mangled. The patchwork of cuts running up both shins and engraved on my arms were a testament to the hard-work put in over the week.
‘’With a project like this you’re free to do as you please, no restrictions, and no pressure. It’s definitely something I’d like to see more of and I’m sure many would agree. We need to see riders in their natural environment, being creative, rather then conforming to contests, points, and politics. ‘’ –Mike Zinger
Blood, sweat, and beer are three things that go hand-in-hand with mountain biking and they pretty much sum up the week we spent on this project. After seven days of digging our hands are battle-hardened and rough from calluses, exposed skin is fried to a crispy golden-brown, and we wake up tasting dirt. Online viewers seldom see the effort that goes into getting just one shot: from fog cancelling a 5:00am sunrise shoot (after we’d already set up at 4:30am), to high speed winds, or clouds obscuring what should have been a perfect sunset; it can be a battle just to capture one three second clip. Despite the long hours and omnipresent heat, all it took was one shot in the can to re-stoke the fires of motivation. Phillips Brewery was the trip MVP as bottles of Blue Buck were crushed like water every evening as s’mores roasted on the campfire.
‘’I came to the Island to do this video, basically the idea was to shoot lines that are original, and fun to ride, and awesome to shoot.’’ -Brendan Howey
Creativity is one of the things that first drew me to mountain biking; the breadth of terrain that can be ridden is unmatched in virtually every other sport. Turning the mundane into the ride-able is an art form unto itself and these days we’re lucky enough to have progressive trail building going on in more countries than ever. We tried to bring a unique look to our builds too and hopefully it paid off. While there’s no doubt this won’t be the last project with Howey, it’ll definitely be hard to top. That’s part of the fun though, and when one adventure ends it’s time to start planning another. What’s next?
Rider: Brendan Howey
Video: Aaron Larocque
Stills: Mike Zinger
Story: Scott Secco
Special thanks to: Piers Zdan & Pelle Gustavs