On Friday I met up with Adi and his brother Andre at their local trail park, Helderberg Trails in Somerset West for a day of shooting and shredding.
Adi and I had been planning to shoot for a while, but being the middle of winter, we have not had much luck with the wind and rain. The weather report was looking good for the weekend, so we took advantage. We were treated to a warm, windless day, which is rare on Helderberg.
"Helderberg mountain was where I started riding and building trails as a kid. To see that the farmers have now developed a part of the mountain into an official bike park is amazing.
I met them at the bottom of the trails and hopped in their bakkie (pick up) and made our way to the top. I haven't shot these trails for a while and the amount of work that has been put in is amazing! There are tonnes more trails with varied difficulty, so it really caters for any level of riding... not only that, but the view toward Cape Town is incredible, so your tyres and eyes both get spoiled!
Adi and Andre's weapons for the day were their Solid Magix trail bikes and were a perfect match for the varied difficulty on the trails.
"The magix is a bike I can do everything on. 175mm of travel on the rear paired with a short chainstay and a 160mm fork up front makes for an incredibly fun bike to ride.
We first tackled a rock garden that was pushing the trail bikes into DH territory, but they managed well, besides Adi getting a flat, but in the sharp rocks that is par for the course.
Heading down the trail, things got more smooth and flowy with some small jumps, rock drops and more berms than you can shake a stick at. Andre went to fetch the bakkie while Adi and I finished up on some corners just above the road gap.
Adi wanted to get down to a long triple at the bottom while we still had light and before it was straight in his eyes. The run in is berm after berm that run along one of the fences and looks like too much fun! Slalom ski style and just gaining speed as you go. After the first run Adi had the biggest smile and couldn't get back to the top fast enough for another go.
We scouted the lower section of the trail and found a small off chamber rock garden Adi and Andre taking turns following each other with smiles and a bit of banter on the way back up.
"Having my brother ride bikes too, is awesome man.
The sun was just about to drop behind the mountain, so we found one more corner before we headed back up to the hip. Something I've had my eye on for a while. The view over the cape flats toward Table Mountain from there is amazing and I have had a shot in my mind since I first saw it and now was the perfect time to get her done! Last light shooting is always challenging, as the light gets lower and lower I get more and more happy. I can play with flash positioning a bit more, but the downside is that it starts getting dangerous for the riders not being able to see. Adi was a champ and after taking a little while to get everything set up he sent a few whips in just about pitch black to get the shot I was after.
Thanks to Adi and Andre for an awesome day on the trails!