Camelot Industrial Park
130 Camelot Drive, Bldg. #4
Plymouth, MA 02360
January 3, 2001
Happy New Year to you! Enclosed are some goodies from the Inventa Everest 2000 Environmental Expedition: an oxygen bottle from the Expedition, a certificate of appreciation, promotional slides for your use and a preview screening of the film festival version of "Beyond The Summit: The Everest Environmental Expedition." I was so pleased to be able to use the Glidecam on Mt' Everest this past year for the shooting of our documentary and I wanted to get you a letter to report on it's performance in cold weather, at altitude and just in general.
The Glidecam V-8 was instrumental in getting shots that proved to be difficult if not impossible. I used it primarily on the trek to basecamp at 17,600 ft and in the Khumba Icefall at 19,000 ft. On Everest, conditions are harsh at best. Basecamp is riddled with rocks, boulders and ice and the weather is unpredictable. I needed a rig that would allow me smooth tracking shots following climbers and Sherpas they negotiated the rocky terrain on the trek from 9,000' to 17,600'. Above Basecamp, the Glidecam went to Camp 1 above the Khumba Icefall at 19,00 ft., where temperatures fell to a low of 10 degrees F. The Glidecam was small enough for the Sherpas to carry up the through the Icefall and proved again to get great tracking and dolly shots of climbers up through the top of the icefall and into the Western Cwm as climbers made their way to Camp 2 at 22,500 feet as the terrain there was icy and uneven. I brought extra low temperature oil to lube the Glidecam in case of freezing, but was not needed at any time. Most of the time I used the Glidecam was in good weather but I did hit some patches of light snow during use.
There are two particular shots that you will see in the documentary that normally we would not have been able to get if not for the Glidecam. In Kathmandu, I followed climber Sherm Bull on his training through the streets of the city and up stairs built three centuries ago at the Monkey Temple each morning. The Glidecam enabled me to simulate a crane shot up those stairs and circling the prayer wheels that is customary when reaching the top. By being small and unobtrusive, I was able to shoot monks at the temple and not cause a big scene. Because the Glidecam is not complicated; I found it fast to set-up and that allowed me to shoot the Puja Ceremony at Basecamp with a large crowd and lots of activity and not miss anything as I switched back and forth from film to video cameras.
The Glidecam added so much production value to our documentary. I feel fortunate to have been in the position to make so much use of this equipment. Please let me know if there's anything else you need in way of performance reports. I am planning to go to Everest this year with the Everest Environmental Expedition 2001 - "The Final Sweep" to document the recovery of the last little bits of trash left on Everest and I will be bringing the Glidecam. There is some garbage left that the team wasn't able to recover because of bad weather in 2000. After 2001 Mt. Everest will be cleansed for generations to come. DezArt is planning to cut together an additional 1/2 hour documentary entitled "The Final Sweep" as part of the boxed set of videos to go with "Beyond The Summit." Glidecam will continue to be mentioned as a sponsor of the documentary.
Incidentally, the United Nations has declared 2002 the Year of the Mountain and 2003 is the 50th Anniversary of the summiting of Mt. Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay so there will be lots of celebrations planned worldwide. We look forward to being a part of it and to a long relationship with Glidecam Industries. Thank you so much for your support. We'll keep you updated on where and when "Beyond the Summit" is showing both on telivision and at Film Festivals. Enjoy the show!