Freeriding is the cure for depression.
Freeriding: It's the only activity that guarantees you will be hanging out with the raddest people, in the best locations on earth, doing the best thing known to mankind - riding a bicycle down a mountain. For me, there's no better place to do that than the birthplace of Rampage, the now infamous tiny town of Virgin, Utah. The riding is unmatched, the locals are amazing, and the views are breathtaking. Nature has carved out a place that is so perfect for riding that it has truly developed a cult following of freeriders that travel from all over to meet up at this desert oasis just to pay homage to the gods of hucking and shred this awesome landscape. I'm definitely under the spell of the desert (heatstroke?) and whenever I can, I make a trip out to this mecca of hucking. Having just built up a new bike, I decided to empty out all the change jars, sell my third testicle, load the car up and head to Utah!
The first day and night were awesome thanks to Utah shredder, Bryce Helbling letting us crash in the house the Laketown boys had rented for his birthday riding trip! We shuttled some laps and then the rain came, but instead of suffering at camp, we had a house to go to! Can't complain when it's too wet to ride when you're in a Jacuzzi overlooking zion! Stoked to shred with all the hooligans from Laketown, they set the good vibes for the rest of the trip. After the Laketown shredders left, local rider Lorin Whitaker, who could only be described as the Mascot of Freeride, picked up the good vibes and generated the stoke for the rest of the week. He also invited his buddy Joe Gorospe from Riot Photgraphy out, this kid got some awesome shots! Amazing photographer to work with, I can't wait to work with both of them again. The one they call L-DubHe helped me find and build lines, and even held a camera for me too, wouldn't have had such a successful trip without him! Lorin is never sitting still...He also shreds, his DH bike was currently down, but we want to film together soon!
The rain was so perfect, we were able to buff out a couple new lines to rideI also have to say thanks to my amazing girlfriend who can talk me down off any ledge...Lorin also took me out to Bender's old zone, where I hit a couple of his drops. There's so many old bender relics that are still so unbelievably huge that they haven't been hit since.I found two rocks that looked like they were jumps from some forgotten freeride edit circa 2004, I decided to try and ride them a different way by 180'ing themAnother highlight of the trip for me was getting a shot of a no-hander on this step-down. It was a sketchy one to me, downhill take off with a decent gap, but Joe nailed the shot.
I ended the trip with this one-off drop I saw years ago hiking around, I'm not sure if anyone has built it up and hit it before me, but it looked too good to pass up on, and it finally looked right to me this year! Turns out it was super easy and fun, I ended up hitting quite a few times that evening, which is funny considering how nervous I had been about it for a while.
I have a lot more road trips planned and have decided to focus a lot more on freeriding and edits this year, and I know Utah will be calling me back soon to make the edit I've had in mind for years, once I buy my third testicle back to go bigger, that is. But for now, this is what we could come up with, huge thanks to everyone that made this happen!Thanks to:
Joe Lawwill and Shimano
Michael Buell @Banshee Bikes
and the continued support of my awesome parents!#LiveLikeMcGazza