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November 2, 2012 Posted by  in News

Banff Mountain Film Festival and World Tour

Last of the Great Unknown was selected as a finalist in the 2012 Banff Mountain Film Festival, and screened Sunday to a crowd of over 700 people. It was a fantastic finale to a great festival run. We are also stoked to announce that it has been selected to tour with the Banff World Tour, with possible screenings at over 700 locations around the world.

Not every tour stop will screen the film, but if you'd like to see it in your town on the big screen, be sure to let the local tour organizers know. The schedule for the tour can be seen in full here. United States - Canada - International

Last of the Great Unknown is also available now on iTunes, and available by BluRay in December.

October 2, 2012 Posted by  in News

October Showtimes and Updates

"Last of the Great Unknown" is kicking off a busy October with screenings at 3 local adventure film festivals, as well as the UK.

October 6th - Boulder CO - Adventure Film Festival
6:00 to 8:30pm - Boulder Theatre.

Presented by Patagonia, this three-day festival premieres a powerful collection of 40 insightful and award-winning outdoor and environmental films that share the spirit of adventure at the Boulder Theater. The weekend festivities also include a Community Night kick-off party Thursday at Patagonia Boulder with film previews, music, snacks and New Belgium Beer. Senses of Adventure interactive gallery at Prana. Outside Adventure Film School presented by Serac at REI. Photography Workshop with expert instructors at Neptune Mountaineering. Family & Kid’s Film Festival, Jonny Copp Photo Exhibit at Amante (Walnut), athlete and filmmaker appearances, massive gear giveaways, after party at Shine, and much more.
Full festival schedule is here.

October 6th - Tempe, AZ - Wild and Scenic
7:00pm at the Galvin Playhouse at ASU, Tempe.

We are delighted to screen two local films this year - Viva la Verde! and Last of the Great Unknown.

Viva la Verde! explores the Verde River, which provides a ribbon of life through the harsh desert, forming an important and rare ecosystem. Man has made use of the river for hundreds of years but today unrestricted groundwater mining threatens the Verde's future. Will citizens accept their role as stewards of this emerging national treasure before it's too late? Filmmaker Hugh Denno explores this question in Viva la Verde!, a film that will empower the viewer to take action to ensure the Verde River has a long and healthy future.

Our second local film and new feature, The Last of the Great Unknown, is an award-winning documentary that showcases the Grand Canyon’s secret and intimate drainages rarely visited by man and the canyoneers who systematically explored these harrowing slots—often risking their lives to bring to light some of the Canyon's most remarkable features.

Official Website for Arizona Wild & Scenic Film Festival

October 10th - Flagstaff, AZ - Flagstaff Mountain Film Festival
October 10th, 7:00 to 10:00pm - Orpheum Theatre, Downtown Flagstaff

Last of the Great Unknown will be screening opening night of the FMFF alongside a couple of other beautiful Grand Canyon films, "The Elder" and "Chasing the Light."

On October 11th, from 5:00 to 6:30pm, join Dan Ransom and Rich Rudow at the Speakeasy in downtown Flagstaff for a gallery reception showcasing a dozen prints from slot canyons in the Grand Canyon.

Film Festival Schedule

Thrillseekers Adventure Film Festival - United Kingdom
October 8th to the 25th, Various Locations, UK

Last of the Great Unknown is one of the featured films for the "High Altitude" program of Thrillseekers Adventure Film Festival in the United Kingdom. The program will featured over the course of a dozen showings in the UK.

Thrillseekers AFF Tickets and Schedule

July 23, 2012 Posted by  in News

Online Screening - Outside Magazine

We are excited to announce an exclusive online screening of The Last of the Great Unknown on Outside magazine's website. Many have asked us how they can see the film and, up until now, you had to travel to one of the film festivals to view it.  Tune in Thursday, July 26th from 6-9pm MST to see the full 22-minute film. It's in full HD with fantastic sound, and free to watch.

Learn more at

"On July 26, between 6 and 9 p.m. MST, Outside will be screening, in its entirety, The Last of the Great Unknown, Dan Ransom’s 22-minute film about canyoneer Richard Rudow’s exploration of an undiscovered slot in the Grand Canyon.

For decades, canyoneer Richard Rudow has been exploring the slot canyons and tributaries of Arizona’s Grand Canyon. His dedication, and the exploration of one particularly committing slot, won him one of our Adventurer of the Year awards. This film tells the story of his proudest exploration.

Deep within the Grand Canyon's vast wilderness are secret and intimate tributaries rarely visited by man, hiding some of the Canyon's most remarkable features. The barrier to entry is steep. To explore them, one must have a knowledge of backpacking, packrafting, rappeling, anchor building, and off-trail navigation. The Last of the Great Unknown is the story of these slots, the canyoneers who systematically explored their drainages, and the secrets hidden deep within their walls."

April 19, 2012 Posted by  in News

Official Selection - Mountainfilm in Telluride

We are stoked to be an official selection for 2012 Mountainfilm in Telluride Film Festival.  The festival will be held over Memorial Day Weekend, May 24th-28th 2012, and will feature an inspiring array of guests and films from around the world.  Get your passes now at

Mountainfilm is dedicated to educating and inspiring audiences about issues that matter, cultures worth exploring, environments worth preserving and conversations worth sustaining.

Started in 1979, Mountainfilm in Telluride is one of America’s longest-running film festivals. Through the years, in and out of trends and fads, the Mountainfilm in Telluride Festival has always been best described by one unchanging word: inspiring. Far more than any other adjective, that’s how festival audiences describe their experience.

In addition to screening leading independent documentary films from around the world, the festival includes a full-day symposium on a critical contemporary issue, art and photography exhibits, early morning coffee talks, a book signing party, an ice cream social, student programs and a closing picnic/awards ceremony. Presentations and panels are scheduled throughout the Memorial Day weekend event with a wide diversity of special guests, ranging from artists to adventurers and academics to activists.

April 16, 2012 Posted by  in News

Advance Tickets to Phoenix Premier - SOLD OUT

The Phoenix Premier of "Last of the Great Unknown" is now officially sold out. Unfortunately, we do not have another showing scheduled for the Phoenix area in the immediate future, but additional screenings are a possibility at a later date. Check back in to this website for updates on screenings, BluRay sales, and digital download options in the future.

Contributions to the Ioana Elise Hociota Memorial Math Scholarship are also encouraged by donation, either online or at the door, until May 1st.

Hope to see you there!

March 16, 2012 Posted by  in News

Official Selection - 5point Film Festival

We are stoked to be an official selection for the 2012 5point Film Festival in Carbondale Colorado.  This year's film fest will be held from April 26-29th.  More news from the festival will be available on their website in the next few weeks -

In the meantime, we are literally just hours away from heading out the door for another 26 days of slots in Grand Canyon.  Great news to start the trip!

March 14, 2012 Posted by  in News

Phoenix, AZ Premier - April 24th

The premier of “Last of The Great Unknown” will take place on April 24 in Phoenix, Arizona. The film documents the exploration of remote slot canyons Grand Canyon, and this special screening will be in honor of our friend, Ioana Elise Hociota.

Ioana died on Saturday February 25th doing what she loved – hiking in rarely visited parts of Grand Canyon National Park. Having walked the Esplanade routes under Great Thumb Mesa and on Yumtheska Mesa, she would have recognized much of the film's stunning HD footage in those rarely seen areas. Ioana and her husband Andy had a chance to see a few clips from the film before her death. She watched with that big wonderful smile. I only wish she could have seen the entire film.

Andy established the "Ioana Elise Hociota Memorial Mathematics Scholarship Endowment" at ASU in her memory. After paying for the auditorium rental, all remaining proceeds from the film premier will go to this cause.

April 24, 2012 at 6:30pm
Harkins Theater at Arizona Mills Mall in Phoenix

$8 per person in advance, contributions to the memorial scholarship fund by donation

The theater can hold just over 400 people. If filled to capacity over $2,000 will go to the scholarship fund in Ioana’s name. Come celebrate her life, help fund math education for others in her name, and see one of the most remarkable short films ever produced on Grand Canyon. Andy Holycross, Todd Martin, Dan Ransom and I will be there to tell Ioana’s story and answer questions about the film.

Rich Rudow

March 7, 2012 Posted by  in News

Official Trailer Released

We are pleased to announce the first official trailer for "Last of the Great Unknown" has been released. It's been a long process, but finally the end is in sight! Plans for the film's premiere are still being worked out, but it looks like it will happen the last week of April, 2012.


"The Grand Canyon is an immense place, almost unfathomable in scale, and one of the last places in the American West to be explored. John Wesley Powell called it the "Great Unknown," having no idea what rapids, falls, or canyons awaited him on his first descent of the river in 1869. In the decades since, the Canyon has been a playground for dozens of explorers. River runners, backpackers, routefinders, lithic hunters, and peakbaggers have all laid claim to the Canyon's iconic landmarks, often seeking out the prestigious "firsts." While many significant points of interest were being explored, there was one feature that was left almost entirely ignored: the Canyon's innumerable technical slots.

Deep within this vast wilderness are secret and intimate tributaries rarely visited by man, hiding some of the Canyon's most remarkable features. The barrier to entry is steep. To explore them, one must have a knowledge of backpacking, packrafting, rappeling, anchor building, and off-trail navigation. The Last of the Great Unknown is the story of these slots, the canyoneers who systematically explored their drainages, and the secrets hidden deep within their walls."

February 13, 2012 Posted by  in News

Packrafting the Grand

Some GoPro footage of our friend Aaron Locander running his Alpacka packraft down the Grand in February 2011. Locander ran about 225 miles of whitewater.

Aaron and his wife Shannon are the inventors behind the Supai Adventure Gear packrafts. These amazing little boats weigh just under 2 pounds and pack down to the size of a Nalgene. While they aren't suitable for much more than class 1 water, they are perfect for canyoneering in Grand Canyon. You can see more here -

February 13, 2012 Posted by  in News

30 days 22 slots

In February 2011, a group of 16 friends set out to raft the Grand Canyon and descend as many technical slot canyons as possible. The itinerary was ambitious. 280 miles of river, 30 days and 22 slots. The tally included 7 fully loaded boats, 5 rookie boatmen, 1400 packed meals, a steady flow of 20k cfs, and an ungodly amount of 4 a.m. wakeup calls. This video is a compilation of that trip, and a preview of what's to come...