There are trips that resonate in your mind year after year, and this freeride MTB mission was no different. After the pandemic shut down the world in late May 2020, I found myself with creative free time to dedicate towards these unique trips. Joined by close friends Blake Sommer and Jack Graham, we geared up and hit the road for an OHV zone in Southern Utah.
For a week, our only motivation was to capture the best imagery possible. The heat was relentless, our days starting early and ending late. Daily alarm clocks shattered the dark morning silence as we’d peel ourselves from our sweaty sleeping bags, often companioned by delirious midnight dinners after shooting underneath a sky full of stars.
On the fourth day, we had exhausted ourselves shooting sunset on the West Slabs. Throughout our trip I had envisioned a night riding shot underneath the Milky Way, and with the perfect features close to camp, it was easy to motivate Blake and Jack for one last attempt.
Hiding the wireless strobes behind the hillside, I backlit the riders to make it appear as if the light was only coming from their headlamps. Slowly perfecting the lighting and spacing between Blake and Jack, they continued to hike the ridge-line over the course of a couple hours. After more than a dozen attempts, we finally captured the image I had envisioned, returning to camp exhausted but fulfilled through our extra effort.