In collaboration with Presca, the world's first climate-positive sportswear brand.
If our last Edition, Abundance, celebrated the adventure world, Stewardship explores how we protect what’s good. Given the crossover between adventurers and environmentalists, environmental stewardship predominates. But community is also a vital theme, and no less essential to our future.
Stewardship is our second Edition alongside Presca. To get a feel for how their work is supporting wider change in the outdoor industry, we spoke with the first Presca Repair Ambassador, David Starley. He’s helping to build a sustainable running movement through The Green Runners. Where does repair fit in?
Recalling the roving travels of his teenagehood and twenties, Douglald Hine's essay helps frame the context in which we adventure today. He asks how living in a world of deepening environmental and social crisis affects the possibility of what he calls ‘the onward journey’. What has really become harder, he argues, is the moment at which journeying onwards might be embedded into life beyond: returning home.
Sam Knights' essay, a departure from adventure in the literal sense, similarly sets the scene by reflecting on the journey of the climate movement. Mourning the lost momentum in 2019, with its wave of mass mobilisation, he asks how the movement might rediscover its impetus amidst deepening crises.
Oliver Cassidy, during filming for Franklin (credit, Luke Tscharke)
As we threaten to push our natural home over the brink, returning home requires taking better care of it. Franklin, a new film following Oliver Cassidy’s raft descent of Tasmania’s Franklin River, offers one perspective on how to do this by celebrating the thousands of Australians who campaigned to save the Franklin in the early 1980s - particularly the pioneering environmentalists who bravely blockaded the proposed dam site. We spoke with Cassidy and producer Chris Kamen.
Two other pieces explicitly honour people stewarding well. Photographer Jim Johnston reflects on his time among the Bahnar Jo Long, an animist hill-tribe group of Vietnam’s Central Highlands living in deeply respectful harmony with the forest. And Trisha Mukherjee profiles Maryland Riverkeeper Frederick Tutman, who is defending nature and community against corporate bully tactics.
Corporate capitalism is entwined with environmental issues and almost every other facet of life. This has been a debate in the couchsurfing community for years, and recently came to a head when Couchsurfing.org, long synonymous with couchsurfing, imposed a paywall. Couchers.org has since emerged as an alternative, so we asked Co-Founder Itsi Weinstock about the platform’s alternative vision.
The coastline near Sarn Bach, featured in Emily Alice Spivey's piece (credit, Emily Alive Spivey)
The passing of a baton is liable to encourage the reconsiderations of stewardship. In the wake of her grandmother’s death, Emily Alice Spivey feels this on a personal level as she returns to Sarn Bach to process her grief and ponder what the future holds for the land and the family connected to it.
We wish you much adventure as autumn ushers the world from abundance to darkness. And, as you go, we hope this Edition prompts fruitful thoughts about the stewardship of nature and community on your patch.
The Adventure Uncovered Team.
Autumn takes the natural world from abundance to darkness. It is a traditional time of harvest: of taking stock, giving thanks and acknowledging our role as environmental stewards. But what does the outdoor community's stewardship - of land, community, adventure - look like in today's autumnal world, teetering as it is somewhere between abundance and darkness? This Edition takes a look.
Read all of Edition 15 below...
Dougald Hine is an author, social thinker and co-founder of the Dark Mountain Project. His new book, At Work in the Ruins, will be published by Chelsea Green in early 2023. He is co-host of The Great Humbling podcast and his Substack is Writing Home. Originally from the North East of England, he now lives in a small town outside of Uppsala, Sweden where he and Anna Björkman are creating a school called HOME.
Emily Alice Spivey
Emily Alice Spivey is a writer, walker and yoga practitioner. Her creative disciplines include poetry, short fiction and life writing, often dealing with themes around relationships to nature. She currently lives in Cambridge where she is studying a Masters in Creative Writing and getting outside as much as possible.
Itsi Weinstock is one of the co-founders and the current Executive Director of Couchers.org. He is from Sydney, Australia, and currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area in the USA, where he works his day job as a data scientist in vegan food science research. Itsi is a passionate couch surfer and proponent of non-transactional travel experiences, having connected with communities all around the world.
Oliver is an 8th-generation Tasmanian, activist, filmmaker, musician and transgender person. He has had a wide ranging career in the arts, beginning in Australia’a longest running play The Ship That Never Was, before moving to Queensland to study film. His short film Lola The Magnificent won several awards including Best Film at the QNFA in 2010. Oliver also won Best music Video at the inaugural Online Video Awards for Phantom Hitmen’s Beautiful Mind - a first of its kind made using the principles of Lean Filmmaking. He began researching the story of the Franklin campaign after the early passing of his father Mike, who in 1983 rafted the river to join the blockade and was arrested the week before Oliver was born. Oliver freelanced in film and TV production in Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Melbourne before Franklin drew him back to Tasmania, where he took up a thematically related job at the Tasmanian Conservation Trust.
With over 17 years in the film industry, Chris has a broad business, legal and creative skillset spanning film and TV production, distribution and marketing. Franklin represents the pinnacle of Chris' filmmaking career to date. Whilst he has produced a lot of short form content and low budget documentaries, Franklin is the most ambitious project he has attempted. It has been a labour of love for seven years and Chris is now eager to share it - and the environmental messages it contains - with the world.
Jim Johnston is a Photographer based in the UK with a focus on sustainable innovation and the connection people have with our environment. Jim was nominated for Emerging Artist of the year by the Royal Academy of Art West of England and has since exhibited internationally. Notable acclaims include exhibiting at the CIWEM Atkins Environmental Photographer of the Year, nomination for the RBSA Photographic Prize and an invitation to the Copenhagen Photo Festival, part of the International Fine Art Censored Exhibition. In his editorial and commercial work, Jim crafts considered imagery and aims to reveal intriguing stories of people, transformation and ideas for positive change.
Sam is a writer and actor based in London. He recently appeared in Jojo Rabbit, directed by Taika Waititi, and The French Dispatch, directed by Wes Anderson. He also has roles in upcoming Netflix, Apple TV, and Disney projects. Sam is writing a couple of comedy-drama projects for television and previously wrote Extinction, a short film starring Emma Thompson. Sam wants to create work that creates change. He is particularly interested in issues of climate and ecological justice, and has written articles for Jacobin, Tribune, Novara Media, Huffington Post, and other publications. He also edited This Is Not A Drill, published by Penguin Books in 2019. Sam continues to campaign for social, economic, and climate justice. He supports movements for radical collective liberation and system change.