Bend, Oregon Spring 2015
By Rob Kerr
Remember the party joke about “That Guy”, as in don’t be “That Guy?”. Well, I thrive to find the phrase’s better cousin “That Moment”. What? Okay, I am a photographer. Let me be more specific, a still photographer enjoying my second season as a Cog Wild guide. I have been in love with photography, particularly photojournalism, for most of my life. Mountain biking has always been alongside and Cog Wild has helped me be on more trails, more often, sharing my love for the outdoors.
The feeling of mountain biking is such a culmination of what we bring to the trail. A need to get outside, a desire to try something new, a vigor to push yourself, wind in the hair, a lost feeling needing some pattern and direction. Perhaps it is more simple. Perhaps it’s way too complex. Whichever, rarely does a trail ride not make a vacation, day, evening spin or fast lunch break better. Can that ride be defined by a moment, or is it unfair to separate one particular slice of time?
Moments exist because of anticipation. If we don’t look forward to it, or feel aware to catch something … well, perhaps moments actually exist as processes. The above photo shows Cog Wild guide Seth Gehman showing Cog Wild clients the day’s ride route on a map. I love this moment, but not for the obvious. In the picture, Seth is pointing at something and feet surround him on a slab of asphalt. Well, I also hope this photo shares a lot more; the idea of an adventure ahead and the thousands of options yet to be experienced. To me, this picture is about hope (a process?). I have been exploring this in some photos that intend to anticipate the experience of a rider, without having the distraction of a rider in them.
Turns, Tiddlywinks Trail with frost
In the outdoors, mother nature is dealing the moments in an enormous quantity. This is one of my favorite reasons to be in the woods with others, to share in these moments as they endlessly come and go. Clouds, wind, perfectly still air, wildlife, changing seasons and different landscapes. Each flavor, feeling and smell a unique moment.
Alpine Trail, socked in
Sandy Ridge evening, after rain
Rhododendrons, Alpine Trail
Of course, these trails and experiences are about the people and their outlook. I find, as many have, natural conservation a pure side effect of being outdoors. Looking around, feeling small, finding a primal joy and challenging a point of view.
Chris, high desert singletrack, Horse Ridge
Snack break, Swede Ridge Shelter
Grab a friend, family member, someone special or just all that you can muster and get out here in Oregon. I can wait to ride another section of trail, share a laugh during a lunch break or indulge in a story after the journey. One thing, when the bike comes out and the helmets go on, we’re here to make the most of the experience.
A few of the Cog Wild guides