One Step Beyond
Ep. 14: Walking the length of India
"If you’re not interested in culture or community, then don’t walk through a country. And if you don’t want to fall in love with humanity, then don’t go to India."
(Note: Spotify listeners will notice an out-of-sync narration during parts of this episode. Please listen on another platform if you care and apologies to all listeners for allowing an episode to go out with an editing error!)
In 2017, the 70th Anniversary of India’s Independence from Great Britain, self-styled British expeditioner Olie Hunter Smart set off to walk, solo and unsupported, the entire length of India and to make a movie about his journey: The Road To Independence. During the course of his 2800 miles/4500km from the Himalaya Mountains of northern Ledakh to the southern sea tip of Kanyakamuri, Olie also re-traced the 240-mile journey of Mahatma Gandhi’s 1930 Salt March protest, and he ended his trip where Gandhi’s ashes were scattered in the ocean. Carrying his film equipment on his back, enduring physical and emotional hardships across the course of a seven and a half month expedition, Hunter Smart interviewed dozens of people along the way, from former Freedom Fighters who remember the battle for Independence, to Gandhi’s great grandson who reminds us that non-violence means to not violate.
I talked with Olie about his amazing walk through incredible India, how he made a film without prior experience, and about how someone with a relatively normal background takes on expeditions like this – and his previous grand adventure, the Amazon River Run where he traced the Amazon 4500 miles from the Peruvian mountains to the Brazilian Atlantic Ocean.
Includes clips from the movie, The Road To Independence.
I also draw parallels between Olie’s journey south through India and Scott Jurek’s FKT running North on the Appalachian Trail.
You can watch The Road To Independence on Vimeo, https://vimeo.com/r/2UWE/ejlhQXFwUV
Enter promo code OSB50 at checkout for a 50% discount.
Read more about Olie Hunter Smart’s expeditions at his web site, oliehuntersmart.com
You can follow Olie at Instagram, Facebook and Twitter also at oliehuntersmart.com
Podcasts mentioned in this episode:
The Pursuit Zone - Adventure Travel Ep 204
Call To Adventure Episode 7
Unraveling Traveling Episode 8
Plant Strong Episode 12
Without Compromise Oct 23
The Pain Cave Ep 70 with Tony Fletcher
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