My good friend RJ Rabe is an awesome illustrator and has been living in SF for a while now after his exodus from New York. He’s been such a good homie, and down with the Adventure Cam project since day one. It was only natural that I get him to shoot some of his amazing West Coast life. This camera has seen it all, and if you’ve been following our Instagram(follow our instagram!!), you would have seen RJ’s destroyed camera patina a few weeks ago. I’m sure this camera has seen water damage, sweat damage, and the perfect amount of love and adventure. So stoked that these cameras get to go a million places I’ll never see, that they’re being reinterpreted by so many amazing people in my peer group and beyond. Such an inspiration!!
Here’s what RJ had to say about his experiences:
This decision to move to California, having never visited, was fueled by a combination of realizing it’s now or never, a continued effort to do things that scare the crap out of myself, and an attempt at a different quality of life. I say ‘a different quality of life’ because New York is amazing. Truly. The life that one can lead there is a life unlike that of anywhere else in the U.S., maybe the world. New York became home and I will always love it. But I needed to be closer to the out doors. Closer to open skies, the woods, winding roads. I wanted to pursue the idea of going out and getting lost, of riding alongside the ocean and sleeping under the stars. Of a life that doesn’t need to be put on hold when winter inevitably rears its bitter, ugly head. Of a life without pants. Moving was a gamble. I could be way off, California could totally suck.
The photos on my NLLTL camera are some of the first rides I was introduced to. I wanted to show what my introduction to riding INSIDE the city was like. Exploring Golden Gate Park; its vast, seemingly endless web of small cutty trails. The small unassuming wooden staircase leading to Mount Sutro. Passing between two ordinary residential houses you’re transported from a dry, steeply pitched city street to a lush, damp forest with fast, tacky single track and air thick with fog and the smell of eucalyptus. And San Bruno. San Bruno was my backyard when I moved and the first ride I ‘knew’. Twenty miles from door to door, with just shy of 2,000 feet of climbing you reach the radio towers and a unique view of the city and of it’s many ports lining the bay. Not to mention a gnarly, fast and loose, off-limit trail at the top if you’re feeling brave.
It’s not fair to compare California to New York. They are too different. Too ideal in two perfectly different ways. I can’t say how long I’ll stay here but for now San Francisco is home. I’m grateful for all the new experiences I’ve had here. And…I was right about the pants thing.