Looking for lines: Richie (left) and Darren pause to look for their
next lines in a desert wonderland of spectacular scenery.
Home: Laguna Beach, California (originally Whistler, British
Sponsors: AMG/Rotwild, Adidas, IXS Sports, Ergon Bike,
Crank Brothers, XFusion Shox, Continental Tires, Adidas Eyewear,
Job: Sponsored freerider for 22 years
Distinction: Pioneer of freeride mountain bike scene and
Honors: Mountain Bike Hall of Fame Inductee, 2010
How you plan for a day of shooting?
“Try to figure out where the light will be good at which locations,
what time, and be as efficient as possible to maximize moving from
one location to the next.”
What kind of locations do you guys look for?
“Unique and radical. For me, it always has to be a beautiful location to make it worthwhile. The action is critical, but without it being
in a beautiful spot, it isn’t that inspiring.”
Air show: Schley has been a mainstay of the extreme-terrain
mountain bike scene for years.
How do you find the locations?
“Some locations you just find in your travels by accident; sometimes people tell us about them because they know what we can
do and want to see if the spots can be ridden; sometimes people
invite you to their spots; sometimes looking in magazines or online
we just stumble across cool locations and then check them out to
see if there is ridable stuff there.”
What’s involved in doing the shoot?
“Finding a photographer, a couple of riders that you like hanging
out with (as it actually can be less fun with the wrong people), a
good location, some great light and some cool action.”
When do you know it’s time to stop?
“When the light is gone.”
How do you keep your sponsors happy?
“Just make sure I am in the media regularly; provide them with
ideas and images to use to help promote and ideally sell their
products. Each sponsor has different needs or things that are most
important to them, but at the end of the day, the job is to sell more
Where do the pictures end up?
“The pictures can end up in magazines, online, in ad campaigns,
poster, billboards—pretty much anywhere really.”
How do you guys make a living?
“Sponsors pay me to endorse their products.”
How do you choose your bikes for a day of shooting?
“Choosing the right bike for a shoot is usually based on the type
of terrain you will be riding and what you are trying to achieve. On
this shoot, it was about riding in Southern California, so it was meant
to be mostly trail riding and what this place has to offer. There aren’t
really any bike parks with a need for downhill bikes, so we chose
enduro bikes with 6 inches of travel. Nowadays you can do almost
anything on an enduro bike. Another choice is to wear a full-face,
light protection or downhill. Darren and I have been doing this for so
long that it is a simple conversation that lasts about a minute, then
we load up and away we go. Darren and I are great friends and ride
together a few times a year, but only seem to shoot together every
couple of years. We now have some of the same sponsors, which
makes more sense to shoot together more often.” ❏
Stony ridge: Massive rock formations are like swing sets and
monkey bars for guys like Berrecloth and Schley.