Update – 7 Days and More

Thanks for tuning into 7 Days In Hell.  The response has been very encouraging, both from friends and total strangers.  I really hope we can land a series, and we should know more about that in early 2014.  In case you missed it, for the premiere I did a live interview on The Morning Show on Global and an radio interview out in Edmonton on News 630 AM.  I have no clue how long these links will be online but check them out now if you like.

I also wanted to give an update on Mohammed, the young man with the broken arm who returned our camera. That was almost a year ago, and while we did raise $1,400 to help him, my two contacts in India have gone MIA on me.  It’s a long story, and very frustrating, but I can assure you that I will find Mohammed and I will get his arm fixed, eventually.

Speaking of India, I wrote a short article for the Huffington Post about 5 lessons the River Ganges taught me.

Happy holidays,

Brett

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7 Days In Hell – Airs tomorrow @ 10PM/EST on HISTORY

It’s been a busy week leading up to the premiere of  7 Days.

Tomorrow I will be on The Morning Show on Global at 9:10 AM/EST to talk about  7 Day In Hell on History on live national television.

The show has received some solid press in 35 media outlets across Canada including key trade, print, and online outlets like the Canadian Press, National Post, KW Record and TV Guide Canada.  We even made Bill Harris’ TV must-sees for the week of Dec. 15.  And we received our first public scorning by the Winnipeg Free Press which comes with the territory (bad press is better than no press!).

Please do spread the word, enjoy the show and have a great Holiday Season.

Best,

Brett

Air dates (eastern standard time):  Tuesday, Dec 17th @ 10 PM — Wednesday, Dec 18th @ 4 PM — Wednesday, Dec 18th @ 6 PM — Saturday, Dec 21st @ 12 PM — Saturday, Dec 21st @ 7 PM — Sunday, Dec 22nd @ 3 AM

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7 Days In Hell – Premiering on History, Dec 17th @ 10

Greetings,

Clear your calendars for Tuesday, December 17th at 10 PM for the premier of 7 Days In Hell.

For this pilot to be turned into a television series (meaning Cliff and myself would be sent all over the world to be starved and worn down as we live-out historic scenarios for your viewing pleasure), we need thousands and thousands of people like you to tune into History on Dec 17th. Please feel free to share this blog post so we can live-out our hellish dream of pain and suffering the old fashion way.

A special thanks to the folks at History (Shaw Media), Proper Television and all of the talented freelancers who have contributed blood, sweat and tears throughout this creative process – that includes you too, Cliff.

Air dates (eastern standard time):  Tuesday, Dec 17th @ 10 PM — Wednesday, Dec 18th @ 4 PM — Wednesday, Dec 18th @ 6 PM — Saturday, Dec 21st @ 12 PM — Saturday, Dec 21st @ 7 PM — Sunday, Dec 22nd @ 3 AM
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University of Waterloo – Alumni Interview – 7 Days In Hell

Brett Rogers: Find out how this Environment alumn is turning his love of the great outdoors into a career in TV

There are many obvious reasons why a Faculty of Environment alumn would not find themselves anywhere near Donald Trump’s personal jet. But that’s exactly where Geography and Environmental Management alumnus Brett Rogers was when he got the idea for an upcoming television show, taking him and a friend on a grueling historical journey through earth’s harshest environments.

Rogers is a budding star on Canadian television. You may not have heard of him yet but you soon will.  As a media entrepreneur, Rogers has a unique point of view distinctly rooted in his studies in Environment.

“I was working on a show called Mighty Planes as a camera assistant and we were working on an episode that was on Trump and his Boeing 757,” explains Rogers. “I was tired of being a camera assistant, I wanted my own show that I could produce and direct myself.  During the shoot this idea came into my head, which I coined, 7 Days in Hell. The premise is; my buddy and I are dropped into historic worse-case scenarios, totally unsupported and we have to film the whole thing ourselves while setting out to survive for a week.”

READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE HERE…  https://uwaterloo.ca/environment/stories/alumni/brett-rogers

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Annie’s Journey Continues!

Greetings!

Things are coming along very nicely with 7 Days In Hell. I will have more to share soon but in the meantime follow my twitter account  @brettonthewater for updates in the mean time.

It’s hard to believe that 4 years ago to the day we had just landed in St.Louis after enduring a month of rain and record breaking cold.  Halfway down the Mississippi River on a 4000 km expedition for the Gulf coast, our trusted boat Annie was just getting warmed up.  Now Annie is on a new adventure.  Here is a e-alert from my great Riverkeeper friends down in Baton Rouge, Louisiana…

Enjoy!

Annie’s Journey Continues!

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Paul and Michael Orr of LEAN/LMRK made the trip upriver last week to drop off Annie to John Ruskey and the Mighty Quawpaws. Quapaw Canoe Company offers wilderness expeditions on the Lower Mississippi River, its Back Waters, Bayous, Oxbows, and Flood Plain between the levees. In over 10 years of operation Quapaw Canoe Company has demonstrated the viability of safe canoeing on the Lower Mississippi River with countless expeditions involving churches, schools, boy scouts, girl scouts, families, couples and individuals. Quapaw has successfully guided over 10,000 people on the river. The Mighty Quapaws is an after-school apprenticeship program run by Quapaw Canoe Company for Clarksdale youth, teaching skills including swimming, canoe making, paddle construction, and river guiding.

Annie will be on loan for 2014 and help John and the Mighty Quawpaws connect even more people to the Mighty Mississippi River. If you’d like to book a trip in Annie under the capable hands of the Mighty Quawpaws please contact John at john@island63.com. Tours can be arranged by the day or the week. Float trips are available on any section between Cairo (Illinois) and the outlet of the river into the Gulf of Mexico. 10% of all trips booked in Annie will be donated to LEAN/LMRK.

The Story of Annie, the York boat:

In 2009, filmmaker, adventurer and friend of LEAN/LMRK, Brett Rogersset out to travel the length of the Mississippi River and make a documentary. He and close friend Kyle “Cliff” Quinn built a 32′ wooden York Boat in the style of the early Canadian fur trappers. Darlene and Jeff Anderson made the construction of the boat possible with a donation in honor of Annie, a young girl who lost a courageous battle with cancer.

After completion of Annie the York boat at Wolfe Island in Ontario, Annie traveled south to begin her journey down the Mississippi River. Brett and Cliff led a team of 5 adventurers for a 110 day, 2400 mile journey through the heart of North America in Annie the York Boat.

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The entire journey has been captured in a 10 chapter video series online here.

EAN / LMRK was proud to play a supporting role in Brett and Annie’s Old Man River expedition. Upon completion of the epic journey, Annie was donated to LEAN’s Lower Mississippi Riverkeeper(LMRK) program to continue to inspire and connect people to our precious waterways and fragile environment.

While in residence in Louisiana, Annie shared her story and made appearances at the local Madisonville Wooden Boat Show. She also continues to safely bring people out on the water and help reconnect them with the incredible natural environment we have here in Louisiana.

See LMRK’s Flickr gallery of Annie here.  See Brett’s gallery of pictures from the Old man River Project here.

                                       www.LEANWEB.org       www.LMRK.org

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Back from Hell

Greetings,

My feet are so badly beat up I can hardly walk thanks to a combination of blisters and calluses from hiking through the wilderness in leather-soled boots that where wet more often than they where dry. My fingers hardy work either.  I just carried a 80 lbs pack for a week and yet I can hardly find the strength to pick up my daypack with my laptop to write this update. It was a week in HELL.  It was hard as heck but I am so thankful for the experience, it was 7 days I will never forget. I look forward to sharing this story later this year.

Brett

The creative dream team after we reunited after day 7.  Doug, Cliff, myself and Andrew.

The creative dream team after we reunited after day 7. Doug, Cliff, myself and Andrew.

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Into The Wild… back in September

Greetings,

This will be the last update until early September; should we return from the Fortymile…

See you in hell,

Brett and Cliff

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold…
 
Robert Service
The last picture before we go...

The last picture before we go…

 

 

 

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7 DAYS IN HELL… HISTORY Canada

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Eric and myself (I am the blonde) posing for the camera. This was the first night I ever spent in the Yukon and one, if not the greatest, experiences of my life.

Greetings,

Today I am heading back to the Yukon Territory (I am actually in Vancouver now).  I first arrived there as a 18 year old in search of true wilderness by way of a four day bus trip on a Greyhound bus with my good buddy Eric Addie. We spent six nights and seven days crossing raging rivers, hiking through waist deep snow and encountering, for the first time – but not the last, a full grown grizzly bear.  But this wasn’t my first introduction to the Yukon. That came years before, back when I was in grade 3, and, sick with the flu, my Mom rented me a National Geographic documentary titled Yukon Passage, about four men who built a log raft in the tradition of the Klondike Gold Rush.  I was hooked, and I still am.

Over the last 2 years I have been talking with Nick Crowe, an Executive Producer at HISTORY Canada about working together to create a television show that embraces my authentic style of storytelling while celebrating the high quality programming that people have come to expect from HISTORY.  Welcome to 7 DAYS IN HELL.

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The idea is simple, my river mate Cliff Quinn and myself are dropped into a historic scenario of survival with a mission to overcome that culminates on the 7th day. We’re left only with period gear and all the camera equipment needed to self-document our struggle.

For this shoot we will walk in the footsteps of those brave souls who first ventured into the wilds of the Yukon looking for gold.  Cliff and I will set out to survive the elements with period gear from 1885 in the very valley that the first gold discovery in the Yukon took place, the Fortymile region.  For 7 days we will live like gold prospectors as we set out on an ambitious, and equally dangerous expedition.

I went to University thinking I would become an environmental lawyer but I left with a burning desire to tell stories that would inspire others like that National Geographic documentary inspired me when I was 9 years old.  Now with the incredible support of HISTORY Canada, along with Proper Television in Toronto, and a great team of committed and talented people, it’s time to tell another story that we will share with you towards the end of 2013 on HISTORY Canada.

See you in Hell,

-Brett

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Cliff, Nick and myself having some fun

P.S.  There will be more information to follow in the coming weeks and months.  Any help with spreading with the word is greatly appreciated. To follow HISTORY Canada (which will be posting info on 7 Days In Hell) join the following… Website: history.ca Facebook: facebook.com/HistoryTVCanada Twitter: @HistoryTVCanada

P.S.S.  I also wanted to give a special thanks for the Official Outfitter of 7 Days In Hell; Canadian Outdoor Equipment Co.  Owner’s and Tim and Chris have been supporting my expeditions for years. If you need any top notch outdoor gear I highly recommend checking out the store or visit online.

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The Impact Equation: Lettuce vs Apples

Two years ago I did an interview for a book that was being written about the secret formula for making an impact in the 21st century.  Co-author Julien Smith had seen me speak back in 2010 at Tedx McGill (which is no longer online) when I told a story about the contrast between the awe-inspiring  beauty of the Yukon River and the Gwich’in people who live there, and that of the Mississippi River along Cancer Alley near the Gulf of Mexico and the story of a dead pelican.  My message was clear, as a civilization what direction did we wanted to take from this point forward; the path of sustainable prosperity or short-term liquidation with long term consequences?

Two years passed by and I forgot about the interview and the book for that matter until early this winter  I received a tweet from a stranger that caught my attention. The tweet said “There are 2 types of people in this world. You’re either head of lettuce or an apple tree.” Which are you? #arlenestribe. I recognized the line, it was my own.  I emailed Julien and asked if he had published his book yet.  He had.  Julien apologized that I had not received a copy. He had a book shipped out to me right away.

Julien had made his mark as a social media guru from his blog www.inoveryourhead.net   which gets over 375,000 hits every month. His first book, Trust Agents with co-author Chris Brogan, is a New York Times best seller that explains how to tap the power of social software and networks to build your business.  When Julien and Chris set out to write The Impact Equation I have to say I was surprised they wanted to include some of my journey in their book.

When my copy of the book arrived I opened it up and casually began to skim through the pages to see if my interview had been included in the edit.  To my surprise my interview was not only in the book but it started Chapter 1 with my analogy of being a lecture farmer vs apple farmer which essentially compared the approach of short vs long term thinking.  As I read on, the guys used my river-rat storytelling life as the lay out for their case study on how to make an impact through their formula CREATE {Impact = Contrast x (Reach + Exposure + Articulation + Trust + Echo)}.  What the Julien and Chris found intriguing was that I never waited for a television broadcaster or the acceptance of grant to do an expedition or make a film, I just did it. I found others who wanted to come along for the ride and were willing to pay the price I set.  Basically crowd founding on a different level.

It was pretty cool to see some of my ideas and experiences printed inside a published book that would be read by people I would never meet.  It’s a great book and if you have the chance you can preview the book here on google books…  or on Amazon… 

Time to tend to those apple trees!

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Iceland, take 2

***I HAD SOME PROBLEMS W THE PICS SO HAD TO RE-POST THIS BLOG…

I just got back from one of the world’s most fascinating places; Iceland.  This is an island where the natural forces of the world make there presence known like nowhere else on Earth.

Consider this… Over 10% of Iceland is locked in glaciers.  Some glaciers like Eyjafjallajökul, cover volcano’s hidden underneath the ice.  Eyjafjallajökul last erupted in 2010 (remember all those cancelled flights?) which resulted in fire and ice going head to head in an epic standoff.  There are 35 active volcanoes in Iceland and over 100 dormant ones.  In the last 500 years Iceland’s volcanoes have contributed to 1/3 of the global lava output.  The island itself is the product of the North American and Eurasian plates pulling away form each other, which is why there is so many volcanoes and hot-springs here.

The country is essentially populated by the descendants of the Vikings (the Norse). The island has been inhabited since AD 874 when the chieftain Arnarson became the first permanent settler on the island. These are the same people who later went on to settle Greenland and Newfoundland in the famed Viking long ships.  Just like the Vikings, the Icelandic people took advantage of the food sources at their disposal. This is a place that until very recently the common diet consisted of fish, whale, horse, and potatoes.  Today fast food, restaurants and grocery stores are quickly changing that.

As for the climate, it’s never that cold in the winter but it’s by no means hot in the summer.  Like most northern maritime places if you don’t like the weather wait 5 minutes because it will change. But make no mistake, the wind is enemy number one here and even on a warm day the wind can make it feel like -20.  Yet even with these harsh winds, the best part of Iceland is that a hot-spring or hot tub is never far away.

-Brett

Eyjafjallajökull Volcano

Eyjafjallajökull Volcano

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Free falling water

Free falling water

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One of many small farms

One of many small farms

Beach w volcanic sand on S.Coast

Beach w volcanic sand on S.Coast

Mýrdalsjökull Glacier

Mýrdalsjökull Glacier

The Atlantic Ocean in view

The Atlantic Ocean in view

Icelandic horses

Icelandic horses

IMG_3383 2p.s. Not a bad way to celebrate my 30th bday. And yes that’s 2 whaling ships behind me.

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