XPDTN3: Meet our explorers

My name is Marc Gasch and I’m a professional outdoor photographer (and amateur filmmaker…) from Spain. Long time ago, I got a Degree in Law at the University, but after a couple of years working, I found out I didn’t belong there. I quit my safe and well-paid job, to the surprise of family and friends, and started working full time as an outdoor photographer, following the steps of my grandfather. Shooting and working hard for almost 20 years now, I specialized in all things outdoor, but mostly “boards” and “wheels”, my two passions. When the opportunity came to join the new XPDTN3 Club, it sounded like the perfect match to merge all my passions in one project: cool bikes, freedom for travelling, shooting pictures and exploring the world on two wheels. The possibilities are endless, so I can’t wait to see what adventures and experiences waits for us on the upcoming trips!

My name is Paul Errington. I would say I was now a full-time cyclist. My occupation as an event organiser and freelance supporter of bike brands allows me the freedom to ride as much as I want… or at least that is the theory.

For some cycling is a hobby, a form of transport, a means of maintaining health … for some it’s a vocation and an all-consuming lifestyle … that’s my relationship with cycling.

In my many years of riding I have embraced near all forms of cycling always excited by the experiences and opportunities they all offer. Throughout my adult life, I have always travelled to ride bikes. I have raced singlespeed mountain bikes through the Himalayas, rattled gravel bikes over iconic Belgian cobbles and changed flat inner tubes at minus temperatures on Minnesotan snowmobile trails in snow. Every single trip seeing me come away more enriched through experiencing new places and new people.

Now more than ever I am focussed on building on these unique experiences and opening up to travelling further and riding farther to experience more.

To me cycling is a lifestyle… and it reflects not only in my work as the Race Director of the Absa Cape Epic. Living in Cape Town, at the tip of Africa, I am well acquainted with most airlines’ bike policy as I seldom set foot into an airport without a bike box.

When people ask what I train for, the answer is usually: for the next delicious meal and bottle of wine. It’s all about the right balance. Cycling, to me, is about spending time with friends, and being out in nature. The best way to experience foreign countries and their diverse cultures is from the (dis)comfort of your saddle. I love stars in all their forms…pitching a tent under the Milky Way, or savouring them in the form of star rated establishments. Michelin is not only a bike tyre…

Where no bike can take you, I like to jump into a kayak, paddle around icebergs or in tropical waters, put on crampons or skies in the mountains, or explore the coral reefs with scuba gear.

I am a sportsman, graphic designer and sometimes photographer. Born and raised in Barcelona into a family of designers, my challenge has always been to maintain the balance between my passion for sport, that brought me to compete in snowboard, wakeboard, triathlon, cycling and trail running; and my passion for branding and aesthetics. I love contrasts; you can find me both in an alley way of Hong Kong or on the summit of Mont Blanc. What’s next? I would love to discover the Japanese culture and its amazing landscapes through an XPDTN3 trip.

I spent my formative years in the mountains, notching ascents around the world including Alaska, Peru and Kazakhstan. Balancing family and career, nowadays I compress those month-long stints of adventure into weekend junkets around my home in Idaho. One of my grandest accomplishments was making the first rim-to-rim-to-rim run of North America’s deepest canyon, Hells Canyon. Alpine style on the horizontal, bikepacking is a natural expression of what one can do with a bike, a map and a fistful of grit. I’m looking forward to threading the hot springs, backcountry air strips and blue ribbon trout streams via the thousands of gravel miles trickling out of Boise on my next XPDTN3 adventures.

My name is Heidi Swift and I am in constant pursuit of the #JOYQOM. That is, I adventure (on two wheels and otherwise) with the primary intention of unlocking transformative experiences of euphoria, connection and discovery. I’m based in Portland, Oregon where I began my cycling journey as a die-hard cyclocross racer.

Over the past 13 years, I have been a newspaper columnist, worked an Editor at Large for peloton magazine, and penned a monthly column for Bicycling Magazine. Though I spent several years reporting on and photographing profressional domestic road racing in the United States, my primary area of interest has always been the human side of the sport; the stories behind the story, the bike ride as a connection point unlike any other, the way that pedaling transforms us.

My freelance photography and writing work led me on many adventures over the years including cyclocross racing in Japan, riding the first-ever mountain bike race in Haiti, solo touring the western United States and Canada, and eventually hosting an annual European bike tour for women. In 2012, along with 5 other women, I rode the entire Tour de France course a day ahead of the pro men’s race to bring visibility to inequality in sport. That effort was grueling and formative, confirming my suspicion that humans are inclined to grossly underestimate themselves and reinforcing the idea that adventure and physical challenge can make us all more aware, resilient, creative, empathic and… joyful. This is the philosophy underpinning the #JOYQOM and I am excited to continue my exploration this year as part of the XPDTN3 crew!

Anna Barrero (@anna.barrero) has a PhD in sports medicine, a degree in sports science and a degree in physical education. She recently investigated the topic of cardiac fatigue associated with cycling endurance events such as the Tour de France. Actually, she rode the Tour herself – TWO years in a row! One day ahead of the professional men together with ten other women to promote women‘s cycling asking for equality in the sport.
Anna was an elite level triathlete competing until 2014 in the Spanish Winter Championships. Today her adventure spirit still remains, and you will not only see her cycling but also hiking, kayaking, mountain climbing, or sleeping in igloos to survive!