Get Inspired: A 10,000 mile Journey to Patagonia
How far would you travel for an adventure?
What challenges would you go through to fulfill a dream? Would you ever recreate a journey for your own authentic experience?
For adventure seeker Jeff Johnson, a 1968 film following four surfer/climber friends’ journey from Ventura, California to Patagonia Chile ultimately lead him to loosely retrace their steps; pushing him to learn more about himself, the world and the impact of traveling through it. This new(ish) film, 180 South, beautifully documents his journey, along with four of his friends, as he sails, surfs, and climbs his way into the great unknown. (The gorgeous HD shots, a bigger crew and a much bigger budget, were sponsored in part by their mentors and now friends from Patagonia and Kashi.)
Just as Jeff was inspired by their film, I am now just as inspired by his film. As a traveler, this film excites that fascination with the unknown, sparking conversations of “where next” and a sense of rush for adventure. It inspires me to push my limits and accept the open, unplanned road. The reality of the dams being built around Patagonia has me worried, but continuing efforts from Conservacion Patagonica has me hopeful. More than ever, I am eager to explore South America and this region that is so foreign to me.
As a travel blogger, we have the responsibility to not only show our audience about a pretty place, but we also need to educate them on what is happening in that part of the world, just as 180 South and the Conservacion Patagonica did for me. It has me pumped to start filming our California road trip, to find the interesting stories and to passionately connect to more people.
The 1968 film, “Mountain of Storms”, chronically an epic journey from California to Chile. Two of the adventurers, Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins (founders of clothing and sports companies, North Face and Patagonia) were forever changed. Tompkins has since bought hundreds of acres of land in Chilean Patagonia to conserve and preserve the area that is now threaten with dams and cutting off areas of the ecosystem from water.
Recreate and re-imagine their trek and to climb Corcovado Volcano.
“True adventure begins as soon as everything goes wrong”- Yvon Chouinard
And boy does stuff go wrong! Having hitched a ride on a sailboat, miles off the coast of Easter Island, their mast breaks off due to a bad pipe. They are then stranded on Easter Island for a month longer than planned, putting them at Corcovado Volcano after much of the snow has melted, making the hike way more dangerous. But all these pitfalls add to the greater experience and by the time they are finished, the two generations are now not marked just by hero to student status, but more as friends.
Just in case I haven’t convinced you to watch the movie yet– Read an interview with Jeff and watch the trailer:
So, I’ll ask the question again: How far would you travel for an adventure?
All photos by Jeff Johnson and Scott Soens for 180 South.