Interview

Climbing, Interview, Outdoor Recreation, Podcast, Special Events / 12.05.2010

I just got a  new set of tires from my Volkswagen Jetta. Got an oil change and I’m packing my gear for the next Joy Trip. I’ll be heading east for the first time to report from The New River Rendezvous in Fayetteville, West Virginia. The three-day event is another one of those terrific gatherings of our tribe, we who find adventure in play at climbing, mountain biking, kayaking, trail running. Maybe one day I’ll try BASE Jumping. In the heart of the New River Gorge there’ll be parties, clinics, a climbing comp, slide shows there’s even going to be a contest to see who can wear the most obnoxious, sexy or outrageous lycra tights. Should be a great time. But you know the thing I love most about a trip like this is having the opportunity connect with old friends, folks I haven’t seen a while. Festivals like the New River Rendezvous bring together some amazing people, climbers mainly, men and women who’ve traveled all over the world and do daring things most of us only dream about. Someone who I look forward to seeing over the weekend is Lynn Hill. In a career that spans more than 30 years, her contributions to the sport of climbing have been both groundbreaking and inspirational. One of the first female climbers to reach a position of prominence Lynn made a name for herself in 1979. She was the first woman to establish a 5.13 route called Ophir Broke in Ophir, Colorado. She’s perhaps best known for being the first person, man or woman, to free climb the Nose route on El Capitan in 1993 with legendary climber John Long. In 1994 she did it again with her partner Brooke Sandahl. Then she was the first to make the climb in a 24-hour period. I had the opportunity speak with Lynn back in Bend, Oregon during the annual meeting of the American Alpine Club. This interview was originally recorded and produced in 2007 for the outdoor industry online trade magazine specialty news also know as SNEWS. In anticipation of the New River Rendezvous we’re bringing you this Joy Trip Flashback, a conversation with climber Lynn Hill.[audio mp3="http://joytripproject.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/LynnHill.mp3"][/audio]
Africa, Ethiopia, Film Festival, Film Review, Interview, Mountain Film, philanthropy, Podcast / 05.05.2010

It says in the Talmud, the sacred text of Jewish law, “Save one life and you save world.” Dr. Rick Hodes has saved dozens of lives and his continuing work in service of the children has made the world a better place for us all. A pediatric oncologist who specializes in the treatment of heart disease, spine disease and cancer, Dr. Hodes compassionately practices medicine at Mother Theresa’s Mission in Ethiopia. Caring for sick and destitute children in one of the most impoverished regions of the world he’s also the subject of a new book and a film for HBO called “Making the Crooked Straight.”
Film Festival, Interview, Mountain Film, Podcast / 17.02.2010

An interview with Time Magazine reporter and author Pico Iyer

PicoIyerFrom a very young age  Pico Iyer has had a close personal relationship with one of the worlds great spiritual and political leaders. In 1960 his father a professor of philosophy and a student of world religions was among first westerners to seek an audience with the Dalai Lama.  Traveling from his home in England Iyer’s father journeyed  back to his native India to meet the Dalai Lama then around the age of 24.  In their conversations the Tibetan Buddhist ruler in exile and Iyer’s father discussed ancient mystic wisdom that had been unavailable to the outside world for centuries. And with the exchange of a single simple gift, they also established a connection between the Dalai Lama and Iyer that now spans almost 50 years. "At the end of his conversation with the Dalai Lama in 1960 he said 'I have this little three year-old boy back in England and he was already quite interested in the story of your dramatic flight from Tibet into India'," Iyer said.  "And so the Dalai Lama, with his great gift for the perfect gesture found a photo of himself when he was 5 years old and sent it to me. And so from the time I was three I had this photo of this little boy, 5 years old, already ruling 6 million people. I didn’t understand who or what the Dalai Lama was. But I could make a contact with this little boy sitting in this place. And I could see all the responsibility he had. So in that sense I grew up with the image of the Dalai Lama and stories of the Dalai Lama from the time I was a little boy." From the gift of that photograph to their first meeting years later Iyer and the Dalai Lama have been become good friends. And through the course of his career as a journalist Iyer has cultivated a deep insight to the philosophy that has guided the Dalai Lama toward a peaceful resolution of the conflict between China and Tibet. In his new book The Open Road: The Global Journey of the 14th Dalai Lama Iyer shares his view of the spiritual and political path we all take to find peace in our lives and the world in which we live.
Banff, Cycling, Film Festival, Film preview, Interview, Mountain Film, Podcast / 16.02.2010

An interview with adventure filmmaker Dominic Gill

I don’t know about you. But I’ve got a hard time getting motivated, especially when it comes to doing something hard, something that might take a lot of time, cost a bit of money or might even be a little scary. Life’s journey can be tough enough just trying to get by making it from day to the next. But every once in a while, someone comes along that prompts you to action. They get you psyched up and excited because you can see they’re going places and the next thing you know you get swept up in the momentum and just like your own life’s journey heads in a whole new direction. You follow that person right down a new road of adventure. Last fall I met a guy just like that. Dominic Gill was one a one of a few dozen movie producers I met during the 2009 Banff Film Festival. His documentary called Take A Seat follows his two-year journey by tandem bicycle over 20,000 mile of open road. Asking total strangers to pedal behind him on what his calls the stoker seat his travels brought a fresh sense of adventure into hearts and minds of everyone he met or who tagged along for the ride.
Diversity, Environmental Justice, Interview, Podcast / 09.02.2010

An interview with Peggy Shepard executive director of West Harlem Environmental Action Inc.

Racism is a word that seldom comes up in a discussion of environmental protection. Clean air, water and soil are universal human values that transcend ethnic identity or the color of one’s skin. But in metropolitan centers around the United States minority communities are being inundated with a disproportionate burden of pollution. Industrial waste, municipal garbage and sewage treatment plants are routinely deposited in areas predominately populated by low income African Americans and Hispanics. In 1988 a community organizer named Peggy Shepard was asked to help address concerns around the creation of one such sewage treatment plant. A facility built in the New York City burrow of Harlem.
Banff, Film preview, Interview, Mountain Film, Podcast, Video / 01.02.2010

An interview with adventure filmmaker Bryan Smith

It’s been more than a month since the last podcast. Thanks to everyone for all the emails and Facebook messages asking for the next edition. After an action packed first season of production, the realities of life came crashing down like a devastating wave. The recession of 2009 made times a bit tough. Simply put the project was placed indefinite hold while I scrambled together a few odd writing jobs through the end of December and all of January. I had to work to make enough cash to pay our property tax bill. I’m happy to say that I recently wrote a fat check to city of Madison and now the project is back on track.

[caption id="attachment_2487" align="alignleft" width="358" caption="Bryan Smith"][/caption] I’ve learned a lot through that first season. With the collapse of traditional media, as newspapers and magazine continue to fold up under the weight of an antiquated model of communication, I’ve discovered that this form of storytelling, sharing music, art and adventure online is the wave of the future. With many creative souls out there building new high quality content for Internet there’s no shortage of great stories to tell. If you’ve been following along on the blog and on Facebook, you’ll know that I’ve been more than a little busy still traveling and finding new subjects to share with you. And in the process I’ve become thoroughly inspired by the work of many others who are pushing the boundaries of creative expression as they explore the heights and depths of the human spirit. You’ve heard me mention my friend Fitz Cahall. He’s the creator of my favorite podcast The Dirtbag Diaries. Fitz has new project that recently posted the Internet, a series of short films that depict the lives of adventurers chasing their passion through course of a year, a season. I connected with Fitz toward the end of last year during the Banff Mountain Film Festival. There I saw the premiere edition of the 22 part film series The Season. It’s an exciting yet, moderately paced thoughtful contemplation on what motivates ordinary people who do exceptional things in the outdoors. At the Banff Centre for mountain culture, in Alberta Canada, I also met Fitz’s partner co-producer and director of the Season Bryan Smith. Produced exclusively for distribution online, the Season brings Internet adventure storytelling to a new level. Directed by Bryan Smith this new film series illustrates the narrative behind the lives of people like each of us who aspire to lead a rich live in adventure.