Bass by Kayak

Bass by Kayak is a short film series (6x10 minute episodes) about a small expedition party crossing from the Australian mainland to Tasmania in sea kayaks.

Duration: 63min
Release: 2018
Bass by Kayak - Episode 1

Kayaking Bass Strait

The first episode is all about sea kayak training (via the Train), a new kayak, ironing out injury niggles and meeting the paddlers- interspersed with Beau on his soapbox. Plans change abruptly when Tim, one of the paddlers, has a resurgence of cancer and can no longer come. It is a typical insight into the moving parts and unknowns of an expedition in the preparation phase.

Duration: 10min
Bass by Kayak - Episode 2

The Expedition Departure

As training rolls on, Dan from the UK is yet to meet Ski patroller Matt, and new guys Paul and Craig replace Tim. No one really knows anyone, and the weather window looms mysteriously: to go, or not to go. They leave for the coast. Beau is grumpy, happy, grumpy and tries not to forget his paddle. Departure is imminent.

Duration: 10min
Bass by Kayak - Episode 3

Island Life

After months of planning, Matty finally meets Dan. Seasickness, magnificent beaches, and two large crossings await the expedition. Emerging mate-ship and a few projects keep the lads occupied as they whittle away a week on an island, smack bang in the middle of Bass Strait.

Duration: 11min
Bass by Kayak - Episode 4

The Long Crossing

Slow, drugged up, and overly optimistic about completing the crossing in daylight, the party of five finally leave Deal Island and make the long, tide-swept crossing to Kilicrankie Bay. They arrive. After deep sleep and vats of coffee, they then laugh their way down the coast of Flinders island. Tassie, all of a sudden, looms.

Duration: 10min
Bass by Kayak - Episode 5

Paddling into Tasmania

Well-oiled. laughing at nothing, comfortable, and with sore backsides, the lads edge ever closer to the end of their journey. With the weather gods laying it on they speed towards Little Mussleroe Bay on the NE tip of Tasmania.

Duration: 11min
Bass by Kayak - Episode 6

The Wash Up

The expedition aftermath, washed up. 18 months after crossing Bass by Kayak, Episode 6 represents key takeaways of the filmed sea kayaking expedition, most of which were key findings of Beau’s PhD ‘The secret life of the sea kayaker’.

Duration: 9min

Overview

Bass by Kayak is a film series (6x10 minute episodes) about a small expedition party crossing from the Australian mainland to Tasmania in sea kayaks. Three hundred odd people have made the crossing in the modern era, and Aboriginal Australians did it during the last ice age in canoes. For the seafarer, linking together the perfectly spaced islands feels like a rite of passage. Adventure filmmaker/outdoor education lecturer Beau Miles narrates the expedition (his PhD ‘the secret life of the sea kayaker’) as the first ever feature film of the crossing via sea kayaks. There is chafe, a storm, bad cooking and an emerging mate-ship between men that barely know each other. The film presents spectacular footage of Bass Strait and her islands. Like a modern-day war movie, low flying drones and go-pro’s give a hand-to-hand insight into the visceral reality of being exposed, at any turn, to the forces of a more-than-human world.

Paddling Film Festival

Winner of the 2018 Best Sea Kayaking Film Award

Waterwalker Film Festival

Winner of the Best Sea Kayak Film for 2018

Production Team

Produced, Directed and Filmed by

BEAU MILES

Produced, Filmed and Edited by

MITCH DRUMMOND

Additional Footage by

DAN WEBB, HELEN BARCALY, TIM LUSZCZAK, MATT O'KEEFFE, JODI EVANS

Original Music and Sound Mix by

DAVE CUTHBERTSON

Special thanks to

Helen Barclay, Kelly Dunstan, Brian Wattchow, Chris Ord, David Parer, Liz Parer-Cook, Jodi Evans, Steve & Martina Honey, Shannon O'Brien, Rohan Klopfer, Laura Alfrey, Ruth Jeanes and Warwick Noles.

The Expedition Party

Beau Miles

Australia

Wanna be farmer who likes to build things, run, paddle, teach and tell stories. He has been narrating his travels for most of his adulthood, and tends to resist the idea that people can, or should be any one thing. He was voted 3rd worst dressed in a party of 3.

Matt O’Keefe

Australia

His true love is backcountry skiing, but in truth Matt loves simply being outdoors. Director of ski patrol at an Australian ski resort, Matt has taken to dragging his 1 year old son around in a sled or trailer as he runs, skis and rides around the hills of his mountain town.

Daniel Webb

UK

Outdoor guide, rock climber, sea kayaker, funnyman. Endearingly warm and friendly, Dan gets sick of muesli after 11 days. Has been known to eat a whole chicken in one sitting, and will often go climbing for 3 days and come back 5 weeks later.

Paul and Craig

Australia

Two guys who were planning to make their own crossing that same Autumn and came to the expedition late. They had tried to make the crossing the year before but had ran out of time. Great fellas, who would essentially run their own trip, but make some of the crossings in the larger pod of 5.

Read articles about the film

Bass by Kayak

Q&A write up: Kayaking Australia’s Bass Strait

Over two full weeks, we crossed from the Australian mainland to Tasmania in sea kayaks. Three hundred odd people have made the crossing in the modern era, and Aboriginal Australians did it during the last ice age in canoes. For the seafarer, linking together the perfectly spaced islands feels like…
Bass by Kayak

Home truths: Bass Strait in a salad bowl

Days after an expedition are odd. I eat a ridiculous amount of fresh food. Veggies and Salad consume me. I become regular again. Routine is picked up as if the handle was turned my way, waiting. Here I sit, home on the range (my pocket sized farm), with drizzle making…
Bass by Kayak

A smaller then bigger crew, then back to smaller…

Most lead up weeks to an expedition are big, in that something pivotal happens. Naturally, the week before is the most full. Surprises, often via stupid assumptions or previous half-fixes crop up in spades. Things break, go missing, or get lost in translation (someone else’s shed, or kit bag). People,…