The last time I met Shaun “Shooter” Carrigan was in September 2006. We had been meeting regularly on the trail for the last couple months, shooting footage, sharing trail time, talking about life. He told me he wanted to have a film ready for December. I didn’t believe he could.
It’s been almost 7 years but it doesn’t matter: the document is still applying and the result is fantastic. I just watched it myself for the first time and I can say I loved it.
Let me recall the idea: Shooter distributes 3 cameras among prospect thru-hikers from the class of 2006 that he considered representative for the insiders’ view. He’ll also join the hikers on-trail to be the observer.
When Sauerkraut and Alina had to leave the trail, Shooter asked me to carry their camera. Before such a beautiful project, who cares about the additional weight? If Scott Williamson can do it, so can I.
Not much of my own recordings made it to the final cut and I kind of miss the chance to see some bits that I remember as very special moments. Maybe they were not or simply didn’t fit with what the producer was looking for. In any way, the end result is indisputable: two hours to tell what it means to hike the Pacific Crest Trail, what it takes at a personal level, what it takes to regular people just like you or me to devote 5 months to hike 20 miles per day, every day.
The documentary in fact focuses on the personal experiences. It’s a film about the PCT as seen through the stories of the hikers and where the great trail is the background. At a personal level, I can say there’s a lot of myself in this document: from my unusually short haircut or my unshaven face to my awkward accent, conveniently translated to proper English, together with some personal facts that remind me of who I was at that very particular time of my life.
Seen from the distance (temporal distance in my case) it is inspiring. It is the highest achievement a documentary like this can get, being inspirational. This one certainly is.
At Tellitonthemountain.com you can see a nice trailer that tells a lot about what’s inside. If you like it, I encourage you to order the whole thing, I’m sure you’ll love it. Set design by Mother Nature.