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The Trans BC Enduro race has been called one of the hardest races in mountain biking, with competitors completing six grueling days of riding the toughest trails through the Southwest Kootenays of British Columbia. Filmmaker and f-stop user Ben Saheb is Director of Photography at Steamboat Powdercats in the winter. When the green season rolls around, he travels north every year to Canada, and the world-class mountain bike trails of BC. This We Are f-stop is Ben's insight on filming this crazy race with seven other talented media professionals from around the world...
Words, images and video by Ben Saheb / TransBC Media Team
Deep in the heart of the Canadian Rockies lies a world-renowned mountain bike race called the Trans BC Enduro. Famous for its world class scenic views and incredible mountain biking destinations, the Trans BC race is also famous for the media team that chases and documents all the action. The same crew has been doing it since this race began in 2016 and Its no coincidence that all of these folks unanimously use the f-stop backpack system to do what they do.
One of the biggest challenges shooting this race is the extended amount of time spent in the backcountry and the relentless abuse that environment puts on your body and gear. On any particular day, its common to see endless rain, constantly dusty conditions to very jostling technical mountain biking. “All of these environments are so hostile to photography gear that they would make any studio photographer cringe” says Ben. “Having the f-stop system however makes these harsh conditions easy to manage with the dozens of ways we can organize and reconfigure the packs.”
The Tilopa and Ajna are the most popular packs among the media team because these packs can easily carry camera gear, medical equipment, extra clothes, food, water and even trail beer in a safe organized fashion. “There’s also a little extra room in there for a random last minute item like an extra lens, a tripod or even a costume.
In the end, what keeps the same media crew coming back to Trans BC every year is getting to be part of an amazing team of talented camera geeks. “If we were out there alone covering this race the grueling hours and challenging conditions would beat us down. But getting to work together to motivate, heckle and learn from one another makes shooting Trans BC one of the most memorable trips of the entire year.”