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Filmmakers!

We are letting you know about an awesome new opportunity that has grown out of Xpedition.TV. Something you’ll want to know about. It’s a new half hour adventure series for television called LIFE WITHOUT BORDERS.

The show is about people who have plugged into their true passions in life by going out and finding them. Sometimes outdoors, sometimes by deep cultural dives, innovation, invention. You get the idea. You know this world.

Weekly Films, Curated by Theme

This will be a weekly show of short films, curated around a weekly theme that will tie different adventures together, and give filmmakers access to a much wider audience than they can find on their own.  As well as a solid model for earning money from your films.

CONTINUE READING…

This is our official teaser for “Tom Sawyer on the Danube” the first adventure film from Xpedition.TV.

Last Summer…

While we were running our first adventure film competition, a curious little film came in. It was a short hitchhiking venture from Istanbul, home to the UK. Nothing remarkable, I can hear you saying, people hitch all the time. Yet there was something refreshing about it that caught my eye. And maybe the fact that these two trekkers were unremarkable was the whole attraction.

They were me (age 24). They were probably you. They were embarked upon that moment of guileless discovery and wide-eyed faith in the goodness of humans that occurs just after college, when potential of the world seems so limitless. It’s the reason “Before Sunrise” was a good movie. And watching them, the question that occurred to me – why do we ever allow ourselves to lose that openness to life? And do we really have to?

Tom Sawyer on the Danube

Months later, having befriended these young adventurers, an opportunity arose for me to make something out of the 700+ video files its filmmaker Jamie Bowlby-Whiting had amassed in his drop box. By that time, he and Leah had begun a brand new, much more ambitious trek from England to Asia. Without spoiling a thing, I can tell you that little of it worked out according to plan. But that’s kind of the point. That, and the deeper personal odysseys they both went on, traveling and coming to know each other. Falling in love, as people do, when life – like the world around them – seems so open.

The Full Film

Will be released soon. We have some last minute polishing to do and some festivals to see about. But it won’t be long and we think you’ll really enjoy seeing what happens. After all, they are you. They are me. Or they are at least who many of us would be – if we held open that window of possibility, just a little bit longer.

Read how TOM SAWYER came to be

Ric Gibbs

Dave Cornwaite on Expedition #9 in Chile

Dave Cornwaite on Expedition #9 in Chile


One of our favorite explorers Dave Cornthwaite has done it again! Last night, he completed his 9th of the 25 human powered expeditions he has envisioned for his EXPEDITION 1000 PROJECT.

Number 9 is now in the books! This one on a new sail-powered recumbent bicycle called a “Whike” (wind + bike). The expedition took Dave and two friends across Chile and into the Atacama Desert, the driest place on earth and one with a lot of WIND!

Here is the video he just posted on his facebook page. It’s pretty awesome.

(This video is from Dave’s Facebook page. Follow his link to see more).

For those of you who don’t know Dave, we’ve written about him before on Xpedition.TV. He and Miguel Endara captured our award for Most Inspiring Adventure Film last summer for his 1000 mile swim down the Missouri River. Swim 1000.

The central goal of Expedition 1000 is that all 25 expedition must exceed 1000 miles, and all must use a different form of non-motorized transport.

On this particular expedition, Dave was joined by explorers Ned Aufenast, inventor of the Whike, and Jamie Fulbrook, founder of Only Bloody Human, an adventure travel site.

For us, half the fun is watching what crazy transport system Dave will dream up next!
Check our Dave’s Facebook Page for all the latest info on this one. It’s pretty unique and as always, super inspiring. Congratulations guys!

Lindsey Van 2009 World Ski Championships

Lindsey Van 2009 World Ski Championships

There are winners, and there are champions. And today – the very first day that women ski jumpers have ever competed in the Olympics – seems like the perfect day to single out a champion.

“My goal is to make the Olympic team, for girls,” declared ski jumper Lindsey Van in a tv interview back in 1996. She was eleven. It would be 18 more years – until today, February 11, 2014 – that it took her dream to materialize.

Not just 18 years of training. But 18 years of – quite literally MAKING the team. As in creating it. Lobbying the Olympic Committee for it. Fighting for it in courts and in public. Willing it into being. And although Lindsey didn’t win the medal we were all hoping for her, those women who did, owe her an enormous debt of gratitude for Continue Reading →

seb-montaz_balloon-highline

As if we needed any more reason to love this filmmaker, Seb Montaz delivers this extraordinary vision of possibility. He and his crew of gravity defying “skyliners” decide to try highlining between two hot air balloons. Has anyone else done this? Are you kidding?! Has anyone else even IMAGINED it? Don’t think so. But that’s the magic of this crew. They are that rare combination of artist, explorer, prankster and storyteller. And no one else is doing anything like them. Here’s their newly released short film that lays out exactly what we mean:

As if you couldn’t tell, this gang LOVES what they do. They love pushing the limits. They love flying, they love falling. Where else would you see someone raise such applause and laughter by falling from a highline thousands of feet in the air? It’s expected. It’s encouraged. When you’re living this far out on the ledge of life – failure simply means that you’re doing your job. Could anyone be more ALIVE than this group? It’s hard to imagine. Continue Reading →

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If you haven’t been watching Dan Milner’s Trail Ninja series on EpicTV, it’s pretty friggin’ good. I am not one for travel videos, but this series is soooooo much more. Dan is a Brit, relocated from England to the mountains of Chamonix, and has made a career photographing what’s out there is some pretty distinct ways. (see Dan’s photo site).

More to the point for me – since I am a mountain biker – is that Dan is Epic TV’s Mountain Bike editor and a pretty hilarious on-camera presence. Since I spent a month in Spain recently, this one (Episode 10) really made for some grins.

Funny stuff. Can’t wait to go back there and try those trails. And he’s not kidding about the goats. They pop up everywhere. You could absolutely go flying.

Hats off too, to Trey Cook, who has built EpicTV into a really impressive site for action sports since its debut only a couple years ago. But Trail Ninja is by far my favorite.

Expeditions of Roz Savage

Expeditions of Roz Savage

Roz Savage is an ocean rower, adventurer and now, quite an excellent adventurer journalist.

You know you’ve been on the ocean awhile when you’re on a first name basis with your oars. “Magic bendy oar; splintered loom oar,” and so on. Or when the discovery of an unused roll of duct tape is better than a bottle of champagne. Or when you begin referring to yourself in the 3rd person. “Knowing Roz as I do…” reads one particularly good expedition post from her Atlantic crossing.

Roz Savage photo by Elena Zhukova

Roz Savage photo by Elena Zhukova

The story of Roz Savage is such of story of grit and determination, such a story of deep personal discovery and accomplishment, that she’d be well within her rights to kick back on her laurels for awhile. First woman to row solo across the Pacific. First and only woman to row across all three of the world’s biggest (Atlantic, Pacific & Indian) oceans. National Geographic Adventurer of the Year. More than 15,000 miles. Some 5 million oar strokes. Rowed solo across the Atlantic during the worst hurricane season on record. We could go on. But Roz is a Brit after all. Doing what Brits do best. Deflecting any surplus of praise and turning her spotlight on others. Continue Reading →

banff-mountain-festival_2013

The Banff Mountain Festival.

Banff. When first heard about its mountain film festival, I had no idea where that was. If it hadn’t been for the winter Olympics a bunch of years back, I wouldn’t know much about Calgary either, but that’s just me being American. Truthfully, it sounded like someplace in Scandinavia. It sounded like someplace COLD.

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It is. Banff sits in the Canadian Rockies, inside a national park, if you can believe that! So you might expect a certain kind of beauty. Very unlikely you’ll be prepared for this. Majestic is the word that kept popping up. And I know it’s a corny word, but it’s all I had to describe those peaks, towering right above us. Every direction you look. If I was younger and hipper, I might just call them insane. Or sick, especially if I were dropping into some near vertical couloir of powder – easy to imagine. Even now, with the trees just sporting their first dusting of snow.

On the weekend I arrive, my host is breaking out her ice axes for some waterfalls that had finally frozen over – in October mind you! – on a river she and her boyfriend kayaked only weeks earlier. Beneath a mountain they climb in summer and will ski a few weeks later. You get the idea. New season? Just adjust your gear. There’s always something to keep you exploring!

So it’s pretty easy to see how a mountain film festival takes root in this community. The 38th annual fest, so they’ve been at it awhile. In fact, together with ‘Mountain Film’ in Telluride, these two make up the grand-daddies of adventure film festivals which, if you’ve never been to one, is well worth the trek to get there. “Really?” you ask. Yes, really.  Here’s why…   Continue Reading →

Nathan-Ward_bio_Patagonia

It’s always fun when the filmmakers behind a project have lived lives at least as engaging as the subjects they are filming. It should be no surprise that this happens a lot in the world of outdoor adventure. And in particular with Nathan Ward and Sam Bricker, co-founders of Grit & Thistle Film Company, whose small but growing pantheon of short films includes “Ernest,” “Sandrider,” and “High Speed,” and the upcoming “Rider and the Wolf” about mountain biking legend Mike Rust.

But wait. For once we’re talking about the guys on the other side of the camera. Both are Colorado natives. Both grew up far enough outside city life that the mountains and every sport therein became the playground – and training grounds – for some pretty epic adventures of their own.

For his part, Nathan Ward wasn’t even looking at filmmaking as a career. He studied finance and political science at University of Chicago and seemed headed for a lifetime of number crunching, when from the 32nd floor of an office in Hong Kong, his gaze kept wandering towards a familiar sight. Mountains. There were mountains on the horizon. Doing what mountains do best. Beckoning… Continue Reading →

Xpedition.TV take off

Challenge Awards, an origin story.

Somewhere on the road between Telluride and Los Angeles (which is to say the road between pure inspiration and the crude mechanics of pulling it off) I had a vision:

What if we found a way for today’s explorers to be rewarded? A way to showcase the bravery and innovation that keeps our world vital?

What if that “high” we feel on the open road, or high-speeding down some mountain, or crossing some ocean, or in the eyes of some magnificent, nearly-extinct being – what if THAT could be brought home and reignited for others?

Wouldn’t that inspire a little bigger vision of why we’re all here? A little less rigidity? A little less pursuit of the almighty dollar? Wouldn’t we all be just a little more forgiving, a little more curious? With bigger hearts or more willingness to just pitch in and help for the sake of… helping?

Ric Gibbs with climber & filmmaker Cory Richards in Telluride, May 2013.

Ric Gibbs with climber & filmmaker Cory Richards in Telluride, May 2013.

Xpedition.TV was born out of these questions. But at one year old, we take our first concrete steps towards an answer. Towards awarding a few people… for being explorers.

Today, with the help of one sponsor (Goal Zero, who took a chance) and a lot of help from the outdoor community – THREE filmmakers will receive some pretty awesome solar gear to help them shoot their next adventure films.

And SEVEN more adventure filmmakers will receive some much deserved commendation and an invitation to work on future projects. Continue Reading →