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Where did the title “Crazy Possible”come from?
Dicky: It was about two years ago now, we were out camping on the Deschutes river and we hatched the plan for Melissa to quit her job and for us to take off for like three months to go backpacking. It seemed like a pretty crazy idea, but yet possible, if we really set our minds to it. It did take a lot of hard work and determination to make it happen, a lot of preparation.
Melissa: I think we thought it would take us three months to get it all organized and I think it took closer to nine or six?
Dicky: I don’t know. It evolved as a name to mean more than just making this first trip happen but for making this kind of thing happen in our lives for the long term.
People talk all the time about dropping everything and going on a big trip but people rarely actually do it. What made you guys actually follow through?
Dicky: I think it was kind of disillusionment on both our parts.
Melissa: We were very burnt out with the path we had been on. For me, it’s confusing still that I was able to do it. To stop just being aware of the problems in my life that need to be changed and to start just taking action. This trip for me was a very significant taking of action, changing on the most fundamental level the way I had led my life.
We decided to go out into nature as a point of early connection for us, but also because there is something very healing and therapeutic about being part of a large ecosystem that’s not just man made.
So we were very intentional about not just trying to travel and see sights but to simplify our existence and just sort of reevaluate the lives that we were leading.
For me I quit a career working in nonprofits and social justice which I had been doing for about 15 plus years, I was very serious about the work that I’d done and I still think that it matters but I reached a point where I couldn’t work in a cubicle anymore knowing that it wasn’t really making me happy; knowing that it wasn’t causing the change in the world that I wanted to see.
Dicky: I think a big part of the bond between Melissa and I was out love of the outdoors and nature, that’s really how we came together actually, through this thing called adventure club, which I kind of piggy backed on, it was Melissa and her friends who were going out hiking every weekend and I joined up. So we had a big love of camping, so when Melissa started talking about quitting her job we started daydreaming about going on one really long camping trip.
For me it was good timing because I was coming off making The Curio and really not feeling jazzed about sitting down and getting to work on another feature even though that’s kind of what I assumed I was going to do. At that point I was just feeling really disillusioned about that whole deal and just so much time and effort and I was feeling a little deflated about the whole trajectory of The Curio. I had just sort of lost my way in terms of what that whole trajectory was supposed to be. I started out making The Curio and my whole goal was just to make a film and to be able to succeed in just doing that seemed like a very lofty goal, and along the way as is probably often the case, I got caught up in the idea of the film doing something and making some waves and getting some and getting some accolades and getting some applause in the film festival scene and none of that happened. So the idea of getting out into nature on this extended trip and shooting, just shooting for the sake of shooting and just making art for the sake of making art again felt very refreshing.
Melissa: I wanted to experiment with actually liking the life that I was leading. I believed to be a certain thing to be successful, to be safe, and I had this realization that that was a fiction, that I could make different choices and I had never done anything like that before. So in many ways it was an experience an experiment of process of trying to create a new truths about your life.
What was it about the continental divide trail that made you want to hike that specifically?
Dicky: Well when we decided we were going to take off on this adventure, we wanted to go backpacking, part of the idea of the trip is that we wanted to push ourselves a little further, do some multi day backpacking and we just wanted to find a central framework for the trip. So when we found out about the continental divide trail it was something new to both of us.
Melissa: It goes through some of the most beautiful country in the United States.
Dicky: Country neither of us had spent much time in, and as we dug deeper into researching the trail we became attracted to it as something of a metaphor for the mission we were on in our lives as well, as we put it in our trailer or whatever, to blaze this path between the security of the east and the freedom of the west., because the continental divide is sort of the dividing line between the west and the east. It seemed like an apt metaphor for the balance we were trying to find in our lives.
The show isn’t just about your adventures, you also take time to highlight development that’s threatening the preservation of the trail. Has environmental preservation always been something that is important to you?
Dicky: In our research of the trail one of the reasons we became attracted to it was because it's not a completely secure trail, there are gaps in it and there is something of a fight going on to defend the trail from development along its path.
So the idea that it could benefit from increased awareness about it became another attractive part of the trip for us.
Melissa: We feature in the series the American Long Distance Hiking Association-West president, Whitney All Good LaRuffa. He was also the trail ambassador for the Continental Divide Trail Coalition, which is the group that’s doing a lot of the lobbying on behalf of the trail. The CDTC also does a lot of the preservation and maintenance. We were really happy not only to bring attention to the trail, but the stewards of the trail and their work.
Dicky: We should say it’s not really a part of the central narrative of the web series
Melissa: It’s not an advocacy piece
Dicky: It’s really more a story about our relationship with the trail and each other, but we hope that by highlighting the beauty of the trail to help raise awareness.
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