Spotlight: Chip Kalback Takes a Road Ride with Epic Views

By David Schonauer   Friday October 6, 2017

Chip Kalback  once swore he’d never ride a road bike.

That, notes the Denver-based photographer (and PPD reader), was “a few years back,” in his mountain-biking days. But things change, and the road can be pretty alluring — especially road rides with epic views at higher elevations, like those around Denver and Boulder, Colorado.

“It’s also not uncommon to meet other creatives and ad-agency folks on rides around Denver and Boulder, so you start to get on rides with kindred spirits after a while,” says Kalback.

He ended up hitting the road, and the result is his series “Front Range,” which, Kalback writes, celebrates “Colorado's Front Range and the cyclists who call those hills their home.”

“I wanted to show the side of road biking that’s focused on getting out there and exploring,” Kalback notes. “I'm always surprised at how epic the rides just outside of Denver and Boulder can be. Whether it's riding up Lookout Mountain in Golden at sunrise, my legs burning on another set of switchbacks, or trying to keep up with friends on Gold Hill in Boulder, and I wanted to share that feeling.”

Kalback shoots a variety of subjects, but, being based in Denver, outdoor lifestyle is personal interest for him — besides biking he’s an avid skier — and a professional mainstay. We previously featured  work he shot for Powder magazine about the National Brotherhood of Skiers, an all African-American organization comprised of various ski clubs from around the U.S.

“If it isn’t ski season, I try to make a habit of starting every weekday off with a 20- to 35-mile ride, and I find my productivity after riding goes up dramatically through the rest of the day,” Kalback says. “Cycling opens up a stream of ideas that seem to appear when I’m out on a ride, not thinking about anything in particular. It’s been massively helpful in organizing my thoughts, developing ideas for personal photo projects, and just burning off any stress.”

“My favorite ride,” he adds, “is from Denver to Golden on a cold day in the fall, riding past the Coors brewery and getting that smell of yeast and hops, before heading up Lookout Mountain.

For his “Front Range” series, Kalback shot with a Canon 5D Mark IV DSLR and a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II lens. He also took a DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone along on his rides in order to capture the Rocky Mountain vistas.

See more at Kalback’s  website.


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