Modern day trailbikes are a lot like the venerable Swiss Army Knife. They do a lot of different things, and they do them all fairly well. Thinking back to when I first started mountain biking in the early 1990's there was really only one type of mountain bike. Fully rigid, with 26" wheels. You could of course choose either aluminum or steel, and you could run your tire of choice, as well as clipless pedals if you wanted them. But that was really it.
Riding on Vancouver's North Shore we either rode the road to the top of the mountain, or shuttled, and then rode the trails back to the bottom. The cross country racers rode the trails up as well, but for most of us we used the road. When we got to the top we used a hex wrench or a quick release to drop our seats before riding the trails down. It's almost unbelievable how much mountain bikes have changed since then, now we have full suspension and dropper posts.
In the beginning of 2021 Kirt Voreis and I headed to southwestern Utah to shoot some photos and video for my friends at SDG Components and DEITY. Every time I ride Guacamole and Gooseberry Mesa I always end up staring at what seem to be endless natural quarters and hips, I always picture it as a giant rocky skatepark. I'd never taken the time to look at any of it with someone who might actually be able to ride the features though, so that was our first mission. After a full day of scouting with Kirt it turned out that many of the hits I'd seen weren't worth shooting. They were definitely rideable, but they didn't really lend themselves to anything worthy of shooting. There were a few that did work however, so we focused on those.
Kirt's Niner RIP 9 RDO is a finely tuned machine. Fully capable of tearing up almost any trail you can point it at, it floats over rocky terrain like a beast and then jumps like a much smaller bike when needed. It's custom painted in purple camo with contrasting orange colored bits and other little touches. All put together like an art project by Kirt himself.
Gooseberry Mesa and Guacamole trail have some incredible riding through fun technical terrain, with some fast flowy bits and lots of little trail side features to play on. Including a few that were perfect to show off Kirt's riding skills. Barspins for days!
Kirt's friend Daniel Silva came along to help out with the shoot, and brought his daughter Olivia along for her first ride in Utah. Mostly accustomed to the loose dusty trails of southern California she adapted quickly to the rocky terrain. Keep an eye on this girl in the future!
A quick little BTS from the photos we shot on the last day