Jasper, you were one of Germany’s best downhill bikers until 2018. Who are you today?
JASPER I would say, I’m a mountain bike pro and YouTuber. Some would call it Content Creator, I guess. I also have a podcast and I train youngsters in bike skill camps. So I’m on the road for more than half of the year, and I‘m super glad to have my Cliff now.
But you’ve travelled a lot as an athlete as well?!
JASPER Sure. Basically, I’ve always lived the vanlife. But back then it was also for pragmatic reasons. I was a racer with no money and couldn’t afford to sleep in hotels. My first car was a VW T3 with a bed. My second car was a VW T4 with a bed. And my last one was an Opel Vivaro. All my life I had cars with which I could stop anywhere and anytime and sleep. But it wasn’t the kind of feeling of freedom that I have now.
In which way was it different?
JASPER In the beginning, I still soaked in nature and the landscapes, but the higher the level of racing the more I had to focus on results. When I had a bit more money, I could also afford a hotel room and a warm shower.
The passion for travelling, the nomad life returned when I resigned from racing. And there was this feeling that I really enjoyed: It was no longer about competition, about beating others, but about freedom and finding myself. I set out to visit bike parks in Europe. And I travelled to events, product launches, photo shootings, festivals and, of course, for my YouTube channel. I soon realized that I needed more than just a van with a bed that takes me from A to B.
What is it you need then?
JASPER I need an office. A place where I can work, where I can cut my clips and do other stuff. And I need a retreat. Whatever I do I always have people around me. And they have expectations. So, I have to perform all the time. Some people are super resilient, but I do need time for myself. And I need a place to myseld. My Opel was too small. I travelled six weeks along the Spanish coast – and a big part of the trip was taken up by sorting stuff from one place to the next.
And now you are part of the SUNLIGHT Adventure Crew Team and you have more space…
JASPER Yes, you know it sounds pretty cheesy, but this was the first sponsoring deal where I had tiny tears of joy in my eyes…
Hey, we’re stoked to have you on board, too. What makes you happy about Cliff?
JASPER It has a really nice seating group and a nice table that works great as an office. I have a pretty expensive unlimited data deal so I can upload the videos from anywhere – that’s in average about 3GB per video. My recommendation for days when you are not on the camping site and you have no external power supply: the powerbank Goal Zero Sherpa 100. It easily charges all devices and has an integrated voltage transformer. While driving I charge my laptop with a USB-C adapter in the 12v cigarette lighter plug.
Any other tips?
JASPER My favourite recipe! Rice with veggies. Fry broccoli, zucchini, mushrooms and pepper with soy sauce, add salt, pepper, garam masala spices, coconut milk and peanut butter – that’s it.
Any destinations you can recommend?
JASPER Well, Oreo, my dog, loves Tuscany, because you can take dogs anywhere in Italy, They are super dog tolerant. Calci is close to Pisa, has nice singletracks and beautiful spots for parking. You have a great view right across Pisa all the way to the sea. You can spend a few days in the mountains and then drive down to the sea to enjoy the sandy beaches.
Me personally, I was pretty stoked by Murcia in Spain. It’s only a small hill, but packed with tracks. The local bike community is super open and helpful, the town itself is rustic and you get great food.
And finally my survival lifehacks:
Always communicate! When you park somewhere and people are passing by or you see someone: always be polite, talk to them, ask them to check if it’s cool to stand there. You often don’t know, do you? Maybe you are standing in a nature reserve, in a forest fire area or on private land.
I’m also not a big fan of loud music and a huge camp – and, of course, never ever leave your rubbish behind. Then all is good!
Fantastic, Japser! Thank you so much – and welcome to the team!