‘Welcome to the Jungle,’ and the Stories Behind ‘Solitaire’


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This past spring, we screened Solitaire, a movie about skiing and snowboarding the remote slopes of South America. For those that haven't heard of the movie, it is a different sort of beast. Filmmakers Nick Waggoner and Zac Ramras spent the better part of two years trekking, riding horses, and skinning to shoot 31 people backcountry skiing and snowboarding from Peru’s Cordillera Blanca to Chile’s Patagonia. They used no mechanized transport of any sort during filming. The only narration in the film comes via passages of Heart of Darkness—read in Spanish.

The full-length movie wasn't the end of the project.

On the Road, Episode VII. Photo: Sweatgrass Productions/Vimeo

Every Thursday until July 26, Sweetgrass is putting out a new episode about the making of the movie. The narration is in English and, often, wry. The words are the perfect compliment to footage showing journeys to some of the world's most remote rivers, forests, and peaks. So far, they've released seven shorts, the latest of which is Welcome to the Jungle. In it, the team endures bugs that infiltrate their orifices, a broken down motor, and at least one meal featuring a large rodent.

For more videos, check out Sweatgrass Productions on Vimeo.

—Joe Spring