Only the Essential: Pacific Crest Trail Documentary
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Only the Essential: Pacific Crest Trail Documentary



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This is the story of a 2668 mile thru-hike on America’s premiere long distance footpath, the Pacific Crest Trail. Learn more at
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In the summer of 2013 Casey Gannon and Colin Arisman thru-hiked the Pacific Crest Trail with cameras in hand. “Only The Essential” is the story of their 5 month, 2668 mile journey on foot from Mexico to Canada across the wilderness of California, Oregon, and Washington. Filmed entirely by hikers.

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Awards & 2015 Selection: Maine Outdoor Film Festival: Best Feature Film, Wild and Scenic Film Festival, Mountain Graz Film Festival, Columbia Gorge Film, Festival, Lyons Film Fest, Green Unplugged Online Fest, Portland Eco-film Festival, Back to Nature Film Festival

Supported by: Granite Gear, Big Agnes, Pacific Crest Trail Association

Music courtesy of:
Sean Hayes (song: Sufidrop) – www.SeanHayesMusic.com
Seba Lay (original score) – sebalay.com

20 Replies to “Only the Essential: Pacific Crest Trail Documentary

  1. Stunningly done. I wanted to get just a preview before bed and I couldn't turn it off before thee end. Awesome shots and editing. The music was seamlessly scored along the way. Many wise words throughout as well. Nature is neat πŸ™‚

  2. I was moved by your film. It felt to me like a love letter to nature, to the trail, to the return to a simple life & raw experience. I'll be attempting a thru-hike this year and I'm even more excited now. Thank you for sharing.

  3. I want to at least hike from Mexico to the Oregon border before I die. Oh and wouldn’t starting from Canada make more sense. I feel like so cal winters are a little more forgiving πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ. Dope movie tho!

  4. Description – hiking the PCT

    Artspeak description – Within this scenic interlude there are intersecting moments of movements; people & animals shuttling about, sometimes interacting. This motion, or impending motion, is one of the many elements factoring into this composition creating a reflexion of the daily commute with a variety of geoclimactic zones & vistas; the resulting experience ranging from voluntary isolation to forced interaction and ultimately defining the subjective metaphorical mythology of our existence; all predicated on the idea of a journey from conception to completion – like life itself.

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