It’s a pretty surreal feeling. Sitting by the campfire on the banks of the River Wye, in the very same spot that a few years ago, I put the final plans and dreams for a canoe adventure with my dad into action. I couldn’t have known, or dreamt, that now we would have a feature film touring the UK, a tour kindly supported by Yukon Tourism, and that it would be showing at Durham Adventure Festival in such esteemed company!
Authenticity was all important for us. We didn’t want to show contrived adventure just for the sake of it. It was important to us during the expedition, that we didn’t compromise the unsupported and remote nature of a wilderness venture with big camera crews, helicopters etc. As a result, the on location crew consisted of just me and my dad and a couple of cameras. We had to get inventive for getting the angles to try and showcase this pristine majestic landscape. This sometimes involved lashing a GoPro to a paddle or spruce tree, or running ahead with the main camera, setting it going, then running back to look natural canoeing past, only to then come ashore, sprint back before we drained the batteries too much, and check we got the shot. The hardest part was getting the camera out when we were really tried and cold, but this is part of the expedition experience, and part of the narrative we wanted to share with the audience. It was a real privilege to paddle through the Yukon and see the wildlife that calls it home, not to mention lucky not to be eaten by inquisitive bears!
We have been touched and delighted at the reaction The Yukon Assignment has garnered from audiences. We sincerely hope Durham Adventure Festival goers enjoy our film. It has been a labour of love, sometimes driving us mad, and always pushing us forward. We want people to see The Yukon Assignment and feel the urge to contact their family and close friends and commit to quality time together, whether it be on a grand adventure, or closer to home. Much like an expedition, in the face of adversity, it can seem impossible. However, with amazing support from people around us and by keeping on chipping away, one solution at a time, the dream has become a reality. We hope you too find a dream; and then dare to believe!
Thank you for having us Durham,
Chris, Niall, Charlie & The Yukon Assignment Team