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Surviving the Boulder-White Clouds

November 4th, 2015 By admin Boise, Idaho Video Production, Documentary Production, Featured, Field Production, Idaho Video Production | 1 Comment

The Boulder-White Cloud mountains are one of Idaho’s most treasured features, marked by rugged peaks reaching over 10,000 ft, numerous mountain lakes and the headwaters of four major rivers.   In a long awaited effort to keep this spectacular area pristine, the Boulder-White Clouds Wilderness bill  passed through the house without a single opposing vote and was signed by President Obama on August 7th. Declaring this area wilderness ensures that 142 square miles of some of Idaho’s most remote landscapes will be protected forever.

The Boulder-White Clouds offer world class recreational opportunities like hiking, back country skiing, hunting, fishing, and horseback riding, as well as habitats for unique wildlife like mountain goats, moose, black bears, and wolverines. It is truly a crown jewel of our state.   A Wide Eye crew recently hiked in to the area, capturing its diversity and beauty from some of the most exclusive perspectives it offers.

 

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Our first day took us to Ants Basin. We settled in among these iconic glowing white ridges to capture sunset time lapses. What an incredible experience with a clear view of the Sawtooths at our backs and herds of elk on either side… until the sun actually did set and we had to find our way off trail back to camp in absolute darkness. Not a single ankle was rolled in our journey. Every outdoor shoot brings its challenges.

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The greatest of these challenges was getting to our next location up Railroad Ridge, one of the highest points a road can take you in Idaho… if your vehicle survives the treacherous, rocky path. The Suburban barely made the ascent, where we soon discovered the “easy-to-walk-to-null” we were planning on shooting at was actually a 50 degree slope with a lofty elevation gain to nearly 11,000 ft. We were faced with many questions: What equipment do we take? How do we pack it? Is this physically possible? Do we all have insurance?

Our three-man crew braved the ascent,  crawling hand-and-foot up loose rock. Forging through several major points of doubt and reconsideration, we made it to the top, and what we found took away the little breath we had left.climbing

 

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The feeling of a 360 degree view of endless mountains and valleys is impossible to capture through a lens, but what an awesome thing it is to capture the perspective of such beautiful and remote areas to share with everyone.

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The most interesting experience here was camping at a location of pure rock, being blasted by wind, without a tree in sight. This is what I imagine camping on the moon feels like. Following with the spirit of the shoot, we embraced the challenge and met it with a competitive game of bocce ball and a gourmet meal by our director of photography / chef, Tom. It was scary trip, a dynamic trip, a trip high in sodium… but a great one, resulting in some beautiful images to share in our next production!

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