Produced by: Hatari Productions.
Running time: Two DVDs over 4 hours
Available from: Australian Deer Research Foundation (www.adrfbooks.com.au)
There wouldn’t be too many Australian hunters that haven’t watched and enjoyed Beyond The Divide, or at least aren’t aware of this ground-breaking and locally-produced television series. What some readers may not be aware of is that Series 1 is now available on DVD. I was lucky enough to get hold of a copy for review and it’s been on high rotation in our house ever since – my three sons just can’t get enough!
I have to admit, I was also keen to have a look because there were some episodes I had missed and wanted to catch up on. Just to refresh your memory, Series 1 consisted of ten episodes, presented on two DVDs, in which Rob Fickling and his friends undertook some amazing hunts across four different countries. In Australia, Rob tackled a giant last-minute South Australian fallow buck, headed to Queensland to chase chital stags, accompanied a good friend to Cobourg Peninsula, NT, to hunt the weird but wonderful banteng, and finished up chasing pigs and goats in a New South Wales state forest. In British Columbia, Canada, Rob and his mate Joe Grech undertook a gruelling odyssey by horseback, boat and on foot for mountain goat. In South Africa, kudu and warthog were targeted on a fence-free concession. Then, in New Zealand, Rob and a mate headed to Fiordland, in the South Island of New Zealand, to search for wapiti.
The common theme linking every episode is Rob’s informative yet quiet and easy going presentation style. He goes to great lengths to explain the hunt in its entirety, as a complete adventure and an experience. You almost feel like you are right there with him as the highs and the lows of each hunt unfold. During each hunt Rob provides details about the hunting area, the target species and the hunting strategy, while all the while maintaining an immense respect for his quarry. The camera work is of a high standard, the scenery often magnificent, and the action real. Success is not guaranteed and trophy animals aren’t taken on each hunt – but I won’t tell you which ones. I ended up sitting with the boys re-watching even those episodes I had seen before. I really must get to British Columbia one day…
So, if you’re a hunter that enjoys seeing true hunting on DVD during those times when you can’t be out hunting yourself, Beyond The Divide, Series 1, is definitely worth a look. Or should that be, another look.