Video: Between the Trees

Dec 9, 2013
by Alex Savage  
Title image
Views: 48,787    Faves: 464    Comments: 35

Squamish offers a varied array of trails. From its manicured groomer-esque Half and Full Nelson trails, to old school rooty, rocky, primarily fall line trails such as Powersmart. This is what makes the town such a renowned area for mountain biking. As with most trails in BC, the logging industry has created roads through the pristine forests to facilitate the cutting and removal of trees. This in turn created access for mountain bikers to explore the terrain and create trails through tireless hours of hard work. The down side to the access created by the original logging is, with the roads and infrastructure already in place, the area is also a perfect place to re-harvest. Throughout the past two seasons Powersmart and the lower Section Skookum are sprouting colorful patches of flagging tape marking cut boundaries, future skidder roads, and log landing areas. In time, this area will be re-forested and the trails will be, at least temporarily, lost. In recent years, local logging has done an amazing job working with SORCA (the Squamish Off-Road Cycling Association) and trail users to minimize the impact on trails and to fund the re-construction of trails. This trail evolution cycle has become quite common throughout BC, it can cause anger, frustration, controversy, and is a great topic for debate. Logging helped create the original trail, reforestation will alter the original trail forever.

For our edit this fall we really wanted to capture the look and feel of the Powersmart and Skookum trails in their current state: fast, rooty, rocky, technical. This trail has not received any significant maintenance in the past few years as logging has been expected for some time. The current state of this trail is far from how it began its life, and farther from what it may become once the surrounding trees are removed.

This season we spent many rainy evenings working on a small playground of fresh take offs and landings between patches of lush West Coast foliage. Big jumps though the ferns was the goal while keeping impact on the living forest to a minimum. This new playground, although not physically linked to Powersmart/Skookum, was the final stop for our edit.

Jeremy said to me I m hitting that fourth jump once more. Want to give another photo a try Seeing as how the lights weren t packed away by that time I obliged to capture some sick action. Devinci royalracing

Director's notes:
Did they really spend all of last winter building out in the cold, wet forest? What did they build? How do they decide who hits the gap first? What if you crash? How do you warm up for hitting a new gap?

These are the questions racing through my head as I follow riders Pat Foster and Jeremy Norris to a new destination in the woods they’ve been telling me about for months. As I discovered, these are the same questions they ask each other as they eye up the new jumps. They look much bigger in person; intimidating to someone not used to flying on two wheels. Pat and Jeremy don’t seem worried. They reassure me they can hit each multiple times so I can capture many angles. We start on an old almost forgotten trail high above Squamish quickly descending toward the new awaiting features.

Everything is in place. Pro videographer, pro photographer, two talented riders, big jumps and fast trails. It’s time for the boys to start flying. 

Pat sending it huge across this high consequence gap in moto style

I actually had Jeremy and Pat answer my questions after our shoot. The answers aren't long winded, but they definitely set the stage:
Did you really spend all of last winter building?

Jeremy: Not all winter, only on the most miserable of days.
Pat: Nope, played in the snow, worked and built in the rain. 

Pat polishing the terrain

What did you build?

Jeremy: Jumps, 26" specific.
Pat: Gap jumps. Just like when we were 12, but with more of a focus on aesthetics than the jumps made from pallets and plywood. 
Why bother?
Jeremy: December blues.
Pat: Forest beers.


How do you decide who hits the jump first?

Jeremy: You'll be angry if it isn't you.
Pat: First guy that stops just rolling-in. 

What if you crash?

Jeremy: Rarely afraid of crashing, only afraid of the post-crash hospital visit. 
Pat: Not really the plan. Hopefully instincts sort that out, they have had their share of practice. 

How do you warm up for hitting a new trail?

Jeremy: Pinning down an old trail first.
Pat: Roll-ins until you commit, then bank on instincts for the first run through. 

Video by Savage Films
Photos by Jon Anthony
Words by Jeremy Norris, Pat Foster, and Alex Savage

Thanks to Royal Racing for the support

Posted In:


  • 48 0
 Awsome dh riding and not on a 10 foot wide perfectly groomed trail either, one of the best dh vids for a while,
  • 12 0
 got me stoked to ride. Unfortunately, it's minus 15 already and snowing. >
  • 11 0
 Agreed. I was getting tired of the perfectly smooth trails and whips off every jump..this was refreshing
  • 4 0
 Very refreshing trail, that was a raw video, very awesome!
  • 2 0
 Finally a trail that is rough like the southeast! Great thing is we can ride all year long here!!!!
  • 44 2
 Squamish sucks - tell your friends
  • 19 0
 Jumps, 26" specific Smile
  • 12 0
 The guy in blues google strap at 00:28. OCD
  • 14 1
 goggle* OCD
  • 3 0
 I know, way to mess up the 'putting goggles on shot'! Great vid regardless though, trail looks mint. Good work.
  • 3 1
 haha, this comment made my day!
  • 2 0
 Gotta work on your goggle steeze Jeremy... Sweet trail though.
  • 9 0
 Mountain biking.
  • 4 0
 Well put
  • 1 0
 exactly what I was thinking.
  • 7 0
 It's all about the whooshy noises. Good choice of music too.
  • 6 0
 Pretty Gnar trail at the first. Awesome Riding, STEEP, FAST, ROCKY, NARROW, ROOTS all goodness!!!!!
  • 7 0
 Beautifully shot, and a very rare example of slow motion done well.
  • 4 0
 big time, even the static shots all had great angles. And slo-mo definately gets over used but this was done really well, even had some funky backwards slo-mo, next level stuff!
  • 2 0
 I like the raw ungroomed trails like they got at the beginning of this vid. I remember back in the day we used to ride rigid bikes with bars cut shoulder width because that was the narrowest gap between trees you could ride through. And curved bar ends to save the broken knuckles for the times you clipped the trees too close.
  • 3 0
 Great name for a film...

Nice work Alex and co. Smile
  • 1 0
 Thanks for the inspiration Keith!
  • 3 2
 loving the riding and those trails are sweet, but the song kinda ruined the video a bit for me. i found it way too mellow for the riding and it made some awesome riding seem a bit tame
  • 1 1
 Agreed, I would have been much more stoked if they had used less slo-mo and a livelier song. Still great riding on nice-looking trails.
  • 3 0
 Squamish is one of those trails that has near mythic status, so I think they chose the music to reflect that. Coupled with the slow motion sequences and long panning shots of the landscape, it creates the impression that the riders are two travellers making their way through an enchanted forest. The ethereal, slightly malevolent feel to the track evokes that pretty well.
  • 4 0
 Love squamish! Love austra! All canadian eh!
  • 3 0
 Guy in black is in an attack position for real. His heads hovering 6" above the bars the entire time.
  • 1 0
 I noticed it immediately. The guy in front (blue) clearly looks better on camera and has a bit more flare and style, but the guy in back is riding way better, and faster.
  • 4 0
 Swans do fly
  • 1 0
 Squamish is the best place to ride and this video makes you feel like you're there... ...wish I was there. Riding. Immediately. Ok I go build a snowman now.
  • 2 0
 Love Squamish!Sweet video.
  • 1 0
 In such a long time it has been one of the best videos i have seen, have to go to squamish one day to shred all those trails
  • 1 0
 Beautiful work all around, guys. Very nicely done. Surrealistic forest and everything fit well together.
  • 1 0
 I think I'm getting "Large Bike Company Blatant Ad" withdrawal.

Seriously though, that was a great video to watch!
  • 3 0
 Best-for-ages VOD
  • 1 0
 His last name is Savage. Thats so .............Savage Smile Great vid. luvin the Gnar!
  • 2 0
 Au naturale!
  • 1 0
 I'm stoked. Time to ride in the snow.
  • 1 0
 Please put your goggle strap in the right place..
  • 1 0
 You guys are legit. Good job gentlemen
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