MEET THE TEAM - THE LIFE OF IEUAN
We at Descend want to be more open and honest with our readers than anyone has been before. So we think it's important that you know a bit about who's behind the keyboard, the lense and the goggles. To sum it up, we are a couple with two dogs and a camera......Here's how it all started.....
THE BIRTH OF DESCEND
Descend was started by myself (Alex Hunter) and Ieuan Williams. Lots of people know Ieuan from his time working as the bike tester for Dirt Magazine. However he suffered a painful blow when Dirt closed its doors back in 2018. After giving up so much to work in an industry that he loves, it was hard to let it slip away for good and as his girlfriend, it was hard to see it happen. We are all familiar with the old sayings ‘every cloud has a silver lining’ and ‘where one door closes, another opens.’ So with the support of friends and family we seized an opportunity. Out of the ashes of Dirt, Descend was born.
Ieuan and I met on an uplift several years ago at Cwmcarn in South Wales. Conversation came easily thanks to a shared love of bikes and my trail dog companion, Bryn. The timing wasn’t right for romance but we stayed in touch as friends. A few years on and we met again at the Forest of Dean thanks to the same dog. The rest is history. There is far more to the story but I won’t bore you with that just yet, it can wait for another day.
Ieuan is a welsh name that is pronounced Yai-yan. It’s hard to get your head around even after batting it back and forth with him a few times. For the first couple of months my Mum called him Iron, Dad called him Ewan and my Sister avoided saying his name all together. You do get used to saying it and eventually the whole family nailed it.
Ieuan is a qualified mechanic who specialises is restoring classic cars but most people know Ieuan as the crazy guy that loves a challenge and will hit any jump that you dare him too. After a lot of success racing quads, Ieuan sought to do something different and carried on his trail of succession with mountain bikes.
Fixing the broken bikes found in skips that no one wanted, Ieuan built up his talent through ghetto ramps and failed attempts. Since mountain biking Ieuan has lost count of how many bones he’s broken and how many times he’s dislocated something somewhere. He is missing a few teeth, ligaments and brain cells. Because of all this though, he does have some cool party tricks. Despite everything he is as handsome as ever, especially in a full face helmet with goggles.
IRON LADY (THE BOSS)
I on the other hand swapped riding horses for riding bikes back in 2007 and I haven't looked back since (because bikes are way cooler than horses). Working as a Farrier, I specialise in putting shoes on horses and playing around with hot metal. However at any given opportunity I love to escape to the mountains for some fun on the bikes. DH is where my heart is but I love getting out for an adventure on a trail bike too. I never take myself too seriously, and Iv had a dabble at racing, proving successful in the mini DH race series, however nothing beats an uplift day.
The best days I've ever had are on bikes surrounded by great company. Being driven to the top is the icing on the cake. I’m not exactly slow but I could be a much better rider with more confidence. Ieuans towed me into some pretty huge gaps that I wouldn’t have entertained if I’d taken a look at them first.
NOT FORGETTING THE DOGS
We have two dogs, both Labrador’s called for Bryn and Ginny.
Bryn is a legend. He can scrub a jump with as much style as Remy Metailler. Bryn’s coming up to 8 years old now and after getting an injury, he’s had to put up his paws and take a step back from being a trail dog. He comes out for a spin every now and then, but tends make a B line to the deepest bog he can find and submerges himself.
Ginny is Bryns daughter. She’s nearly one and a half and loves the bikes. She’s young and bouncy and keen to chase but has an unhealthy attraction to fox poo! With Bryn showing her the best lines, she’s coming on really well and is going to be a great trail pup.
Descend is in its early stages of development with lots of exciting things to come. Our aim is to bring back raw, honest content along with rad photography. We strongly believe that the reader deserves unbiased, truthful reviews that aren’t influenced by advertising and butt kissing.
Descend is solely run by Ieuan and myself with occasional appearances from guest riders and photographers. We both ride, both test and take turns capturing the action for one another. We can see a bright future for Descend but to get there it's going to be hard work. Balancing full time jobs alongside running Descend and making room for playtime is a challenge but with our passion behind it all, we know it will succeed.
So please stay tuned for honest reviews, rad photography, travel guides and more. Check out our you tube channel, follow us on Instagram and Facebook and help us reach more people by giving us a share here, there and everywhere.
WORDS: Alex Hunter
PHOTOS: Alex Hunter, Ieuan Williams, Scott Windsor, Tom Cooper, Pip Hunter