In August 2016 four generations of mountain biking’s finest set out to raft Canada’s famous Tatshenshini River. A film about their adventure drops next week.
Kootenay production powerhouse Freeride Entertainment, in partnership with Red Bull Media, has created a documentary involving an all-star cast of mountain bike legends. The four generations of freeriders embarked on a two-week adventure in August 2016 that included rafting the Tatshenshini River through Northern Canada and searching for unchartered terrain to explore on their bikes.
“Riding the Tatshenshini” is the resultant film from that trip and it will be released on Red Bull TV on October 18th. The 42-minute movie features four freeride mountain bikers including ‘The Godfather’ of freeriding, Canadian Wade Simmons, and fellow Canadian Darren Berrecloth, the most celebrated freerider of his generation, plus American slopestyle pioneer Tyler McCaul and his countryman and rookie Carson Storch.
The other main character is the Tatshenshini-Alsek Provincial Park, which contains nearly one million hectares of glacier-covered mountains and untamed wilderness. Rafting through icy glaciers and unpredictable weather patterns was, understandably, challenging for the team. “It’s a very demanding environment,” the group’s guide warns them. “The Tatshenshini is relentless…(it) has claimed lives. It’s a foreboding place for people if you’re not prepared.” The expedition began in Yukon’s Dalton Post and follows the foursome 260km by raft culminating in the incredible landscapes of Dry Bay in Alaska, home to the world’s largest non-polar ice cap and most active glaciers on the planet.
“In order to really develop your skills, freeride mountain bikers need to constantly explore and mine for new terrain” said Berrecloth. With over 60 years combined experience between them, each athlete brings something unique to the adventure. Simmons with his vast MTB experience, Berrecloth with his wilderness training, Storch with his contagious enthusiasm and McCaul…well, he just wants to catch his first salmon and throw huge tricks.
In order to see the project to fruition, producers had to get guidance and permission from a number of organizations including Yukon Tourism, Canadian and American National and Provincial Park officials as well as the Champagne First Nations. To ensure the preservation of the land and environment, shelters were built on elevated structures, flame retardant blankets were used to eliminate scarring on the ground from camp fires and all waste (including human) was carried out to be disposed of in the proper fashion. The unique shale and rock sediment of these northern trails left no traces behind, leaving the mountains as pristine as when they were discovered.
“Riding the Tatshenshini” will be made available on Red Bull TV in English and French starting October 18th 2017. TELUS Customers can find it on Optik TV via Ch.707. French viewers can tune in to TVA Sports 2 October 26th at 8pm EST.