The North Face – Tsirku

“You’re searching and exploring for these things that haven’t been done. Corrugated is one of the hardest places to get in the world [and] only a couple people have done it.” – Sam Anthamatten

Tsirku is a three-part big-mountain adventure ski series from Sherpas Cinema and The North Face. It features snowboarder Ralph Backstrom and skiers Hadley Hammer and Sam Anthamatten, professional North Face athletes who set out to tackle the fabled Corrugated spine lines of the Tsirku Glacier. Located deep in the Saint Elias mountains where Alaska, British Columbia, and the Yukon converge, this is a place most skiers and snowboarders only dream of visiting. Needless to say it was no easy task.

“You have to be patient in the mountains and not just rush into camp. You’ve got to do as much research as possible.” – Eric Crosland, Director

Faced with a sixty-kilometre snowmobile route across a massive glacier marked by crevasses, seracs, severe wind and avalanche zones, the journey became as relevant to the story as the destination. The team arrived at Haines pass in northern BC on April 1st 2016, and due to constantly changing weather conditions it took them nearly two weeks to move all the gear, supplies and fuel into Corrugated basecamp before completing the full day mission to get to the top of the spines. Transporting camera gear and an entire base camp via sleds was a major challenge in and of itself – let alone the impending first ski descents.

Shot with the RED Weapon, Shotover F1 Aerial Systems, and signature time-lapse techniques, the Sherpas team succeeded in telling the story of ‘Tsirku’ in an extremely challenging and remote environment.

The areas in this series are new terrain to most skiers and snowboarders but they’ve been part of an indigenous trail network for centuries. Part of Tatshenshini-Alsek Provincial Park and home to the Champagne and Aishihik First Nations (CAFN), the expedition was granted permission from BC Parks and the First Nations community beforehand. Sherpas Cinema worked with Yukon Heli Skiing and local guides from Haines Pass Expeditions Limited to make this project possible.

The line on Corrugated, was first snowboarded by Jeremy Jones, Xavier De La Rue and Ryan Bell in the movie Deeper.

Watch the three-part series ‘Tsirku’ on The North Face YouTube channel here: 

 https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNfWDbERpf34FsSWIpqGD0Q

Credits

Executive Producers: Landon Basset, Brandon Baker, Aimee Tetreault

Creative Concept: Eric Crosland 

Athletes:  Hadley Hammer, Ralph Backstrom, Sam Anthamatten, John Collinson

Director: Eric Crosland, Tim Symes 

Director of Photography: Leo Hoorn 

Post Production Supervisor:  Tim Symes  

Editors:  Tim Symes,  Leo Hoorn

Assistant Editors:  Jay Macmillian, William Biname, Clay Mitchell

Graphics: Jeremy Kenning 

Grade:  Kris Smale / MPCLA

Music Supervisor: The Rights Workshop

Sound Mix:  Jeffrey Yellen 

Sound Design: Jeffrey Yellen, Steve Henderson

Original Scores: Jeffrey Yellen, Jacob Yoffee

Ground Cinematography:  Eric Crosland, Leo Hoorn

Aerial Director: Eric Crosland 

Aerial Director of Photography : John Trapman 

Social Media: Jake Dyson

Spiritual Advisor:  Dave Mossop

Still Photographer: Andrew Miller

Associate Producer:  Roland Eksteins 

Producer: Malcolm Sangster

Huge thanks to everyone involved:

Champagne and Aishihik First Nations

BC Parks

Xíxch Tláa, Diane Strand – Pete Wright – Sean Sheardown

Ben Drury – Robby / 33 Miles Haines – Brandon Baker

Landon Bassets – Aimee Tetreault – Tom Gaisbacher

Yvan Gaston Sabourin – Robin Penn – Katie Clifford

RED Digital Cinema

Yukon Heli Skiing

Horizon Helicopters

Mountain Flying Service

Haines Pass Expeditions LTD

Music:  Ratatat – Bilar