A great slide show can inspire and educate an outings club, retail audience, or outdoor community better than thousands of dollars worth of advertising, and Andy is a master of the medium. He has produced and toured a dozen shows, and each one features:
• Messages and themes that look beyond recreation, tailored to speak not just to climbers but to anyone interested in the outdoors.
• Professional production quality using reliable, cutting-edge digital equipment (not Power Point!)
• Capability to present at venues from homes to grand theaters
• Lively tempo that alternates insightful narration with segments of carefully arranged, synchronized music.
• Andy helps each venue generate media exposure to make sure that every event is a success.
Here are his most recent, currently available shows:
Mountains of the Blue Sheep
A Journey Beyond the Himalaya
Back from perhaps his most important expedition yet, Andy hasproduced what's likely to become his most memorable show. With three Canadians and four Indian-Nepali climbers, he ventured to a restricted and barely-explored area at the northern tip of India,the Eastern Karakoram.
The rough maps available for this area tell thatthis is some of the most awesome terrain on earth, andyet to the world at large this region remains almost totally unknown. The peaks here soar to 25,000 feet high, and the glaciers run to 50 miles long. Those giant glaciers feed the big, wild waters of the Shyok and Nubra rivers that run through impressive canyons andbroad valleys. The maps are dotted with labels of both Buddhist and Muslim habitations that have beenisolated for agesbeyond the Himalaya on one side and the Karakoram and vast deserts on the other.
Come modern times, nations didn't have use for or know enough about this area to lay full claim to it. So, in an awful twist of fate, India, China, and Pakistan have fought severalof the highest and most remote wars in history, trying to keep each other out. Their armies still prohibit travel into the disputed territories. India has started allowing visitors into secured areas, butthe combination of ultra-remoteness and bizarre politics has keptmuch of the region off everyone's radar. This is one of the last regions on earth where your imagination can still go to wondering on a large scale.
Andy joined three Canadians and four Indian-Nepalis to be the first team to explore and climb at the southern end of the Karakoram. Most of the little they knew to expect came from simple maps that showed summitsbetween 20 and 21,000 feet high. Regional experts assured them that no one had ever photographed or likely even seen these peaks before, from the ground at least. More, there was a little hamlet called Rongdo that probably had never hosted a foreign visitor.
As a documentary of this trip,Mountains of the Blue Sheep first sets the stage of history, showing how this area went essentially overnight from anoutpost for Silk Road caravans to a battle ground and flash point between three nuclear-armed nations. Andy's brilliant photographs and clear narration mixed with his recorded audio bring outthe scale and beauty of this landscape, as well as the crazy history and wonderful resilience of this half-lost region.
The narrative includesanecdotes from elders who recalled for him the last camel caravans and the first boundary wars. The core ofBlue Sheep then portrays how the team ventured to the high country beyond Rongdo. Theypioneered treks to high cols, discovered wildlife and surprising signs of ancient humans, visited an almost unknown hermitage, and climbed and named four peaks over 20,000 feet high.
Blue Sheep's final and most poignant chapter shows how Andy stayed on in Rongdo village and documented life there. Sharing a common heritage for working hard and enjoying life in mountains, the villagers and he reached out across several levels of civilization to come to know each other as personal friends. Depending on basicskills at speaking Ladakhi, Andy learned of their roots and their methods, he helpedbring in the autumn harvest, and he came backwithperspectives on humanity and happiness that can only come from listening carefully.
For anyone who’s ever found joy in the mountains and then dreamed of what might lie, as Kipling put it, “behind the ranges,” Mountains of the Blue Sheepgathers that dream into a real-life experience that will renewyour sense ofwonder for our world.
There may be no better place on earth to ski the backcountry than the High Sierra, and this show traces the personalities, trends, methods and adventures of the many people who have sailed by board over the Sierra wilderness.
• Pictures and stories from the original pioneers like Snowshoe Thompson and Orland Bartholomew, to the classic European immigrants and Sierra Club pioneers, from the hippie expeditions to the modern fiends of telemark, snowboard and alpine gear.
• The theme of self-sufficiency, exploration and fun tempered with caution and experience. You'll be amazed at how much fun so many skilled folks have had for so long up in the snowy high country.
Show length: 70 minutes
ARRANGING A SHOW
Depending on the venue, fees for these shows vary from $500 to $1000. Travel costs may be extra, depending on the location and Andy’s schedule.
Call 760-920-2904 or email for more information.
Ways to the Sky
The Story of Mountaineering
in North America
The Ways to the Sky book wasn’t big enough for all the historical photos and tales that Andy collected, so he built a show that gives an audience a grand evening tour through the core of our continent’s mountaineering history.
• Over 300 historical images--over half of which are not in the book--plus Andy's expert narration, plus period music, really give a feel for the changing decades of climbing.
• Unifying theme of the evolving spirit of “can-do” that is the core thread connecting all generations of mountaineering.
• Historical figures, from the explorers like John Muir and Conrad Kain to the technical pioneers like Fred Beckey, to the modern, super-climbers--plus more greats you’ve never heard of--make each period come alive with personality.
• Four-color poster underwritten by W.L. Gore, Patagonia and Black Diamond helps promote the show
• Audiences from California to British Columbia to the Telluride Mountain Film Festival have given this show rave reviews.
Show length: approximately 75 minutes
The Adventure is Living
Any life fully lived is an adventure, and all adventures seek a fuller life as its goal. This message comes across with vibrant intensity as Andy takes you through his mountaineering career. From making the commitment to know mountains to achieving brilliant new routes in the Himalaya and Andes, to the despair of struggling to survive a plane crash on a Yukon glacier, this is a riveting show. From the ashes of disaster Andy delivers a message of looking toward the future with new awareness and deeper optimism.
Show length: approximately 60 minutes
Tall Mountain, A Karakoram Summer
Summer 2008, Andy was one of a small team that went to climb Broad Peak and K2, the 12th and 2nd highest peaks on earth. Two-time Everest summiter Dave Watson and Dan McCann hoped to ski both peaks, and Andy just hoped to climb, document the action with both still pictures and audio, and come home in one piece. Now he's put together what initial audience members are already calling his best show yet.
• Images of Baltis, schoolchildren, the land, the peaks and the climbers and skiers
• Scenes mix with audio and narration, and the story unfolds like a movie, if anything even more evocative.
• You're virtually right there as Dave and Andy climb to 25,000 feet, as Dave skis down some incredibly hairy terrain, and as the team helps survivors from the dramatic and tragic events on K2.