A few times each season, we launch location-based collections that highlight and celebrate our California cycling heritage. For these special releases, we travel to parts of California for photo and video shoots to bring these new collections to life in some epic locations.
While a lot of magic happens in Hollywood, we sometimes find ourselves creating some of our own to showcase these iconic locations due to California’s fickle weather. As heat and drought continue to plague the state and forest fires continue to be an issue from late summer to mid-winter, we’ve gotten a little creative!
Earlier this summer, we launched our Palm Springs Collection which played with the funky mid-century modern architectural designs with the luxury of the vacationing Hollywood elite. Palm Springs was a scorching 120 degrees during the period we were shooting, so we had to pivot and come up with something a little more creative.
For our Fall 2020 Sonoma Collection, wildfires struck the area at the exact time we were supposed to shoot. We scouted and found a local San Diego spot in the Highland Valley wine region. To support Sonoma and the havoc the fires left we donated a portion of the profits from Sonoma to the Sonoma County Fire Relief.
And most recently, our week-long trip planned for our incredible Fall Sequoia Collection shoot in the Sequoia National Forest was interrupted by devastating wildfires. Again, we had to pivot. Thankfully, we found some amazing alpine environments that are well suited and allowed us to bring this collection to life. We've also chosen to donate 3% of the Sequoia Collection sales through October to the National Forest Foundation.
We are grateful for our cycling community and the fun spirited people that helped us bring this Sequoia Collection to life. We wanted you to get to know them and share their love for bikes and adventure in their own words. So, here are their words!
Eliel Ambassador, Athlete, Model
The Eliel fall release photo shoot was a blast! For starters, it’s always a privilege to show people around the little mountain town, Idyllwild, where I live. When I go on rides, I try to take pictures to capture how pretty it is, but showing the Eliel team my favorite spots in person was special. And having legit photographers to actually capture how pretty it is was pretty cool, too!
The shoot also reminded me of why I love cycling so much and why I am so grateful to be a part of the Eliel family. My “photo partner” was Justin. We had never met, yet it was like we had ridden together hundreds of times. He clearly loves to ride bikes as much as I do and his skills were incredible! Our “team turns” (where we turn around to head back towards the photographer without crashing into each other) were totally dialed by the second try. And we even found a random tire swing to finish the day off with some goofy shots. The day is one that I will remember for a long time. And now it has me stoked to go get in some long fall rides in the new line!
Eliel Fit Model, Sequoia Model
This Eliel photoshoot represented for me everything that is right in the world: quality time with my favorite people, mountain vibes, back roads and cool kits. The easy conversation + fun storytelling with the Eliel team made working on the photo shoot feel super authentic for me. And what a treat to ride at sunrise and sunset--I was struck by the beauty that these times of the day bring especially with the forest backdrop.
Dee and Leeann Folse
I'm not easy impressed but I can honestly say that I/we are blown away! The whole experience was such a pleasure and an amazing Adventure all because of the Eliel team. Y’all made us feel like family and it was just such a pleasure spending time with the team. As we understand it, this was a “Lifestyle” shoot, and I feel you all captured that perfectly. We love that y’all used the “Clampett” / “Adventure Mobile” as a home base. It certainly fits the theme of living life outside and living ADVENTURE!
We loved riding whether it was road or the control roads of Idyllwild and thought throughout entire adventure that y’all couldn’t have been more professional, accommodating OR patient with us newbie “models”.
WE, Team Deeann, are honored and feel lucky, happy to be a small part of such a great organization that y’all have created at Eliel. AND we wanted to own all the items we wore during the shoot, they are so awesome and up our alley. Hope your new line blows people away from the patterns all the way down to the “zipper barn” ha! Your kits were both comfortable with great technical features and really sharp looking, no negatives anywhere.
Eliel Director of Photography
For the past year and a half we have all been thrown curveballs and learned how to quickly adjust and re-focus. I was looking forward to our first travel shoot for a collection in a long while and even more excited to head to Sequoia.
The moment we heard that all the California National Forests were shut down my heart sank, and then I starting adjusting the plan. It didn’t take long and with everyone involved open and flexible we quickly reset and used some of the amazing areas we with-in an hour or two of our offices and not affected by fires or closed.
My favorite moments in the trip were late on day one when we had Sunrise highway all to ourselves and we were losing light. The other was on the last day when we had paused to wait for light and were able to spend some moments bonding in the beauty of the forest in Idyllwild that we were enjoying.