Words by Tristan Kennedy | Photos by Dan Medhurst | Riding by Cal Jelley
“Guys, it’ll be dark soon. We should probably think about going?” We’re 1,566 metres up in the Apennine mountains of central Italy, it’s October, the wind is whistling through the frames of our bikes and the temperature is dropping rapidly. Ahead of us, according to our guide Andrea, lies a five or six kilometre descent down some fairly technical singletrack. And yet none of us – Andrea included – is in any particular rush to leave.
“Can I just try that again?” says Cal Jelley, a sponsored rider for Evil Bikes, as he jumps off and pushes back up the trail. No-one objects because from where we’re sat, behind photographer Dan Medhurst, we are being treated to possibly the greatest natural light show we’ve ever witnessed. As the sun dips lower through the thick autumn sky, god rays spread out across the landscape, the edges of the clouds seem to glow and the landscape around us turns a deep fiery orange.
“There’s no way a filter could make the world look this good.”
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” says Dan showing me the image on the back of his camera. “It looks like there’s some crazy Instagram filter on that,” I say. “Ha! There’s no way a filter could make the world look this good”.