Latest

Wasfia_3
Film Review “Wasfia”

There is something so refreshing when you find an adventure film as well made as “Wasfia.” Named for its intrepid world explorer Wasfia Nazreen, the film played recently at MountainFilm in Telluride and appeared online last week on Nat Geo’s youtube channel, which recognized her as one of their Emerging Explorers. The recognition doesn’t go nearly far enough.

The pitch? First woman from Bangladesh to climb the Seven Summits. Which we all know is no small feat, but it doesn’t begin to cover the personal odyssey and remarkable inner transformation that is on display through every frame of this short film. Wasfia is so much more than a mountain climber. She’s a true inspiration (I know, the word has become a cliche, but not when it’s true!) for a segment of the population that really doesn’t have one of their own walking these paths. Bangladeshi girls, take heart. Wasfia has done you proud. There is more curiosity, courage, and heart in this woman than I have seen captured on film in a looooooong time.

wasfia_2

Directed by Sean Kusanagi, beautifully shot, and narrated entirely by Wasfia, the film evokes a moving, deeply personal, yet remarkable universal journey of surrender. Highly recommended viewing.

cory-richards_boy-with-falcon_sm

Okay, we know. It’s summer. Who has time for adventure films? You’re either on the road, or gearing up, so why now?

Oh please! Since when don’t we have time for a few minutes of high-value INSPIRATION? To pound the pulse in our veins? Stoke the belly, and maybe even fill our chests?

From 5Points, MountainFilm and festivals beyond… here are the top 5 Adventure Films you must see this summer!
 
COUNTING DOWN…

#5 “A Tribute to Discomfort: Cory Richards” from Blue Chalk

Photographer extraordinaire Cory Richards reflects on the long road that has brought him to the far corners of the world – and what he learned there.

Awesome! Show me the rest!
Continue Reading →

5Point-film-fest
Okay! We’re going! We’ve only been hearing about 5Point Film Festival for years. Now we’re finally committed.

Egged on by our colleague Fitz Cahall, we are super-stoked to make the trip out in April. From what we hear, this is fast becoming THE preferred venue for new adventure films. And has a strong, filmmaker friendly community that puts their money where their ideals are. Fitz’ “Road from Karakol” was a favorite at 5Point last year, winning top awards.

We’re also coming out to introduce filmmakers to our upcoming tv series “LIFE WITHOUT BORDERS.” A kind of showcase for indie adventure films and the very human stories that lay behind them. This is a BIG passion project that’s looking closer and closer to fruition. (After 18 loooooong months!) Can’t wait to tell people about it! More news as we get closer!


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 →

dan-milner_trail-ninja
 

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.

Lake_Louise_Alberta_ric_gibbs_640px

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 →