Behind the Lens - Garrett Grove

Mar 28, 2013
by Scott Secco  

Early on in the day while approaching the alpine terrain above Retallack Lodge I noticed this ridge line. Immediately I had high hopes for a silhouetted sunset photo later on in the day. So after spending the day riding and snapping photos we came back to it just as the sun went below the horizon. Kevin guinea pigged the ridge line for me working his way down it s steep slope helping to create this image.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:
I am 30 years old and currently live on the eastern edge of the Washington Cascades in Leavenworth, WA. I love the PNW and feel most at home being amongst its culture and environment. From its love of coffee to its gorgeous and elusive peaks I have always found inspiration here.

Jordan works some magic in Squamish BC

How long have you been shooting photos?
I have been shooting photos for about a decade, five years of which have been on the full-time professional track. Besides shooting with an old Olympus film camera in high school I really started shooting with more intent when I was 20 and began venturing into the mountains with a Canon Rebel (film).

How long have you been shooting mountain biking?
Mountain biking is relatively new to me and have only really been shooting it for 2-3 years.

Tools of the trade.
A week up at Retallack lodge exploring their tenure trails with James Doerfling amp Linden Feniak.
A week up at Retallack lodge exploring their tenure trails with James Doerfling.

Were you self-taught or have you had any formal training?
Self taught.

Do you ride yourself? How does this affect your images?
I do ride; it wasn’t until I really started riding consistently that I started shooting mountain biking more. As with many disciplines, unless you are a dedicated participant there is no way to really appreciate the nuances that go into it, which can be directly reflected in the photography.

The hands tell the story of a day spent climbing up the Regular NW face of Half Dome in Yosemite.
Scott works his way up the Tempest Headwall in the Central Cascades.
Scott on the amazing Sinestra in Indian Creek UT

Do you shoot anything else besides mountain biking?
I spend a good chunk of time photographing skiing and climbing as well.

Do you have another job as well or is it just freelance photography?
Just photography.

What is your favorite thing to shoot?
At this point if I had to choose one activity and culture to shoot it would be skiing, but it is the seasons and variety between that keeps me motivated.

Some of the deepest snow of my life gave us some premium snow to work with outside of Sorcerer Lodge BC
Chris Rubens airs over some sunset light Kootenays BC.

What kind of camera(s) do you use?
Most of the time I am using a Nikon D4 or D600.

Is there any other gear that you use frequently?
F-Stop bags have been on my back for everything.

Did you ever shoot 35mm film? Do you miss the magic of film or is digital better by far?
Like most, I started off shooting film, but only for a few years. Honestly, I don’t think I shot film for a long enough period of time to become nostalgic about it. Both mediums seem to complement each other and have their own strengths and weaknesses.

Casey Groves took a big crash in the morning causing him to need a lot of medical attention.
I had seen Geoff Gulevich hit this ramp his run prior and new he came off it at top speed luckily the second time around he threw up an even bigger trail of dust prior. It doesn t get much better than the Utah Desert for dust shadows and amazing riding
Jack and a few others along with Brandon put in long hours in order to get this gap to work.
Shooting the Redbull Rampage mountain biking event for 2012.

You shot the Red Bull Rampage for Pinkbike, how does that compare to shooting big mountain skiing?
They are pretty similar, but one big difference I noticed was that dirt is significantly harder than snow! I have never seen so many injuries in such a short span of time. Watching Semenuk drop into his gap/transfer was by far the most nervous anticipation I have ever had while taking a photo. Overall, I really enjoyed shooting the event and watching each team sculpt their lines and collaborate with the given environment.

An amazing ski trip up to the Fairy Meadows Hut in the Northern Selkirks of British Columbia.

Do you enjoy seasonal shooting, or would you rather chase an endless winter?
Seasons are key to keeping things fresh. Towards the end of every winter I can’t wait to spend time biking, climbing, surfing and otherwise soaking up sunshine.

If you could shoot anywhere with anyone, who and where would it be?
Nothing in particular comes to mind other than visiting a new place with someone who knows it well. Diving into new areas and cultures with the people who live there daily is a pretty amazing experience.

On the approach up to the Pickets in the Northern Cascades.

What photo are you most proud of?
That is constantly changing but I really enjoy looking at my older photos. They remind me of where and how it all started.

What photographers or videographers inspire you?
It is an endless list! Some of the more timeless characters are Robert Frank and Henri Cartier-Bresson their skills and patience for the right framing is amazing. Ragnar Axelsson, his black and white film photography of Iceland and Greenland is stunning. Within our own niche Sterling Lorence, Mattias Fredrickson, Jordan Manley, Christian Pondella and many others continue to inspire and find new ways of shooting the same activity.

An old trail filled with moondust gave us some pretty amazing riding and shooting conditions.

Will you ever shoot video or are you firmly committed to stills?
I would like to say only stills, but the power and ability to tell a story in video is pretty appealing.

Who are your main clients?
It is always changing, but I have been working the longest with Patagonia, Gore-Tex, Powder, Skiing,, Rock & Ice, and ESPN.

Mountain biking around Lillooet with Kevin Landry

Anything else we should know about you?
I always enjoy good quotes and advice, this one recently stuck out to me:
bigquotesSometimes you work on something and it's not going anywhere because it's not the right thing for you. When something is right, your heart feels it... for young photographers I think it's important to find projects that you feel like this towards. - Evgenia Arbugaeva

Spotted this lonely island on a flight up to Skagway from Juneau

Pinkbike // garrettgrove
Garrett Grove's Instagram
Garrett Grove's Tumblr

Past Photographer Interviews:

Behind the Lens - Mike Zinger
Behind the Lens - Joakim Andreassen
Behind the Lens - John Wellburn
Behind the Lens - Kuba Konwent
Behind the Lens - Bruno Long
Behind the Lens - Christophe Bortels
Behind the Lens - Norbert-Szasz
Behind the Lens - Christoph Laue
Behind the Lens - Lars Scharl
Behind the Lens - Mattias Fredriksson
Behind the Lens - Marc Landry
Behind the Lens - Reuben Krabbe
Behind the Lens - Ale Di Lullo
Behind the Lens - Sebas Romero
Behind the Lens - Sven Martin
Behind the Lens - Baxter Redfern
Behind the Lens - Fraser Britton
Behind the Lens - Margus Riga
Behind the Lens - Justin Brantley
Behind the Lens - Ian Hylands
Behind the Lens - Keith Valentine
Behind the Lens - Thomas Gaffney
Behind the Lens - Jacob Gibbins
Behind the Lens - Eric Palmer


  • 16 0
 Wow! This is what you call a great photography! Awesome shots tup
  • 5 0
 excellent work !
  • 16 1
 Very humble guy! It's always nice to see people do what they love, and live off it. Best type of job in the world.
  • 8 0
 Is there a fav' all button!?
  • 8 0
  • 6 1
 wow so many PODs! Oh and sick island, just needs a nice DJ line.
  • 3 0
 cool guy!
  • 3 0
 Amazing work!
  • 2 0
 Awesome quote
  • 2 0
 amazing stuff!
  • 1 0
 absolutely breathtaking! brilliant!
  • 1 0
 Some very artistic and intersting photos- great colours
  • 1 0
 oh my dayyyzzzzzz
  • 1 0
 Nice pix
  • 1 0
 Big thumbs up!!!!
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