Fly High with the Thrill Seekers

Fly High with the Thrill Seekers

(heart thumping music) – Three, two– – One! (cheering) – [Woman] Coming up. (adventurous music) – [Narrator] Man kind and the elements. For some, it’s an uncomfortable bond. – [Man] It’s getting worse out here guys! – [Narrator] For others, when weather strikes, inspiration begins. – [Man] You come to a place like this the stars just burst. – [Narrator] These are the people who challenge nature, seek out its limits, reveal its secrets and
embrace its awesome power. – Woo hoo! – [Narrator] In this episode we’ll meet a group of civilians
putting their lives at risk to rescue people trapped in
Iceland’s extreme environments. – [Man] When you get cooled down your heart goes pumping
almost out of your chest. – [Narrator] A man who
climbs hundreds of feet in the air in the hopes of protecting some of the oldest trees on earth. And a team of sailors racing up the treacherous coastline
of the Pacific Northwest. (radio chatter) – Yeah, we’re really scared. – [Narrator] These pioneers
of the great outdoors ahead, on That’s Amazing. (bouncy energetic music) – The moment right before I jump (slow breathing)
there’s a split second there where everything goes completely silent. And that’s when I push off the edge. Three, two, one, see ya! (adventurous music) Woo hoo! – [Narrator] We have all wanted to fly, but who would willingly throw
themselves off a mountain? – [Ellen Voiceover] My
name is Ellen Brennan, and I’m a wingsuit base jumper. Currently I’m the fastest
flying woman in the world when it comes to wingsuit base jumping. – [Narrator] A wingsuit is a special suit that inflates with air and allows you to, in
essence, fly or glide. Ellen does this all over
the world at crazy speeds. – [Ellen] On average, I’m flying about 180, 190 kilometers per hour. – [Narrator] That’s
almost 120 miles an hour. – [Ellen] So when I’m
going to go do a jump, I’m focusing on what’s
happening weather wise. I’m looking at the trees to
see if there’s wind blowing, I’m watching the sun to see
if it’s heating up the air. I don’t want to push my
luck with the mountain. My vision is the first thing I notice so everything becomes very focused on just my feet. (slow cracking sound) (metronome ticking)
my heart’s beating super fast, usually beating like 160, 170 beats per minute. Sometimes people will talk to
me and I won’t even hear them. And as soon as I push off I can hear the splits of my feet off the rocks. (wind breezing past) (adventurous music) Woo hoo! Like it’s something that shouldn’t happen. It’s not natural, but I’m doing it. How in the world did I
get to be able to do that? It’s one of the coolest things in the world. Like, I can’t think of anything better to do. (chuckle) It’s pretty mind-blowing. (frantic music) – [Narrator] In the dangerous
sees of the Pacific Northwest, 44 sailboats are competing
in one of the longest and most grueling human
powered races on Earth. The race to Alaska is a 750 mile journey and the only way forward
is by wind or by oar. Here the water and weather conditions are extremely unpredictable. If you get stuck in
them, you’re on your own. – [Man] It’s getting worse out here guys! We have to go to Bella Bella. – I don’t think there’s any other sport that relies so heavily on the weather to propel you. But you also have to respect it, otherwise it will destroy you. – [Narrator] Spencer Weber
is with team Hot Mess. A crew of four young Canadians with little endurance sailing experience. They’re racing against faster boats with more seasoned crews in a sail contest that knocks out more than half the teams that attempt it. So for these intrepid young sailors, it’s not about winning. It’s about making it to the
finish line in one piece. – Race to Alaska is a 750 mile engineless, unsupported boat race from Port Townsend, Washington
to Ketchikan, Alaska. – And there’s only two
checkpoints in between. You have to go through Seymour Narrows and you have to go through Bella Bella. But other than that, it’s
choose your own adventure. – [Jake] The race is really unconventional because sailing has so many rules. So we want to strip it all away and make it just about any boat no handicaps or anything, and if you can make it first you get $10,000. – There’s a lot of different battles going on in the R2AK. Fellow racers who you’re
trying to compete with, but you’re also trying to overcome these enormous forces of
nature, wind and current. And you’re just in this tiny little boat trying to take on these
challenges head on. – [Narrator] Team Hot Mess
are well aware of the dangers inherent with sailing in
the Pacific Northwest. They train for the race in nearby Vancouver, British Columbia. – So we had four crew. It was myself, Neil Roberts, Will Schwenger, and Nick Schwenger. We met here and decided
to do the race together. I was a civil engineer in the middle of a quarter-life crisis, and it was between
staying in my cozy cubicle or going on a suffer fest to Alaska. So, decided to go to Alaska. Anyone who tells you they’re doing it for the 10 grand is lying. Because the guys who are going to win it are doing it in
hydrofoiling, carbon fiber, fancy boats and to them 10
grand is just chump change. For me, I just love sailing and the R2AK seemed like the steepest learning curve around. – [Crowd] Five, four, three, two, one! (cheering) – [Spencer] The race started that noon. Everyone sprinting down
the docks to their boat, jumping on the boat, untying it, and then everyone’s using
their human propulsion method to get out of the harbor. So everyone’s rowing and
pedaling and paddling as quickly as they can to get out. The adrenaline’s going and
everyone’s super stoked and the atmosphere is just wild. – [Man] Sails are up around the corner. – [Man] We’re finally
reaching the left, boys. – [Spencer] Rounded the point
out of Victoria Harbor there. Was awesome wind. – [Man] All right, first transition zone. Oh yeah, we’re sailing out. (seagulls squawking) (intense music) – When you get further north, you have a great deal of current. That wind against tide condition can cause standing waves. It will be very difficult
for these vessels to try and get through
that area of the coast. – [Spencer] As soon as
we rounded Chatham Point and entered Johnstone
Strait, the gales picked up. We had like 35 knots on the nose and we’re like bashing through
all these standing waves. And we have a pretty light boat so we were some hang time off waves. It was making all kinds of crazy sounds. And then once you get
through the Johnstone Strait, you’re going up the outside of BC. Then you’re in open ocean and that presents its own challenges. Lots of swells and no shelter from wind. And you feel so alone. It’s really humbling, especially when a storm
starts ripping through. – [Woman over radio]
Gale warning in effect. Wind now 1.25 knots increasing to south two five – [Man] That’s our net expense. – [Man] Good. – [Spencer] The forecast
was for 35 to 40 knots (radio chatter in background)
and we were seeing like maybe five to like seven knots. We didn’t listen to the weather forecast and just got slammed by 35 knots of wind. – [Man] It’s getting worse out here, guys! – Yeah, we’re really scared right now so we turned around. And now we’re trying to find somebody’s dock or something. But nobody lives here so
there’s not a lot of docks. – [Spencer] It was
driving rain, big waves, and you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face it was so dark. There were no lights on land, you had no idea where anything was. We couldn’t anchor because we brought insufficient anchor gear. So we just had to like keep sailing around in circles until
daylight basically. (relieving music)
(sigh) Getting caught that night before was a bit of an eye opener. from there on we kind of like took the forecasts a lot more seriously. We mapped out a bunch of bail out points so if we’d have to stop we knew on the map like where we could go. (intense music) – [Man] Coming in to Ketchikan. – [Man] Where are they going? – Oh my god. – [Cameraman] Looking
forward to being dry? – Hell yeah. – [Spencer] You know,
we’ve been in our dry suits for 24 hours straight. Everyone’s wet and cold and tired. And then the wind just
completely shut off. You’re paddling into the finish line of this epic race that you’ve just done. It was super anticlimactic, but the race isn’t about the money and it’s not about the finish line; it’s about the journey. There couldn’t be a more poetic
end to the race to Alaska than a brutal hate mission
to the finish line. (triumphant music)
(cheering and clapping) I would definitely do the race again. You kind of need this, like, blind optimism to get through it. And the ability to forget
pain and suffering. (slow curious music) – [Narrator] On the sandy
shores of the Florida Keys, sea turtles are laying their eggs. But a threat is looming
for these gentle creatures. The Caribbean climate has becoming increasingly unpredictable. As rising sea levels cripple the beaches where these turtles annually nest. – They come back to their natal beaches, so animals that were born here are coming back to this
very little spit of land in order to lay their own eggs. If the beach goes away they may not be as flexible
to use another beach. (curious music) – [Narrator] Dr. Kristen Hart and her team of researchers are working around the clock tagging and tracking these turtles in an effort to protect their future. – [Kristen] They’re
imperiled, they do need help, and we’re trying to figure
out where the problems are. (light music) We are here on East Key in Dry Tortugas National Park. We are about 70 miles west of Key West. And we’re in the Gulf of Mexico. There are seven islands, we are on one of the smallest, but one of the densest
turtle nesting beaches. Some of them are right
on top of each other, a foot away from each other. This is a almost completely marine park and the turtles come up and
grace us with their presence. It’s pretty amazing to
see these animals up close and personal with them. And we get right in there. Generally sea turtles date back to the time of the dinosaurs. So it’s two hundred
million years of evolution. Our study was the first to really concentrate on
the Dry Tortugas turtles. Our goals are to try to
determine patterns of movement and habitat use, to figure
out where they might go. (curious light music) All these points are either
sightings or capture points. 11C. When we first started working here we realized that we could dip
net juvenile green turtles. I had done this in the Everglades and out here the water is much more clear. We can pursue them in the
flats and shallower areas. She’s coming up! The bigger turtles out here, we do what’s called rodeo capture, or also turtle jumping. They’re usually 10 or 15 feet down, but when they need to come get a breath they’re coming up to the surface and so that’s when the
diver meets them down there. You basically get your
hands sort of on the rear and right behind the head and you get the animal pointed up. I got him. It’s a team effort. Once we get them onboard the boat, we’ll do a standard workup which involves measuring
them, weighing them, taking blood samples, tissue samples. There’s a lot of questions that we can ask even just about how healthy they are, and how healthy then are the resources that they’re using. (curious light music) We also fix devices on them
to track their movement. So we’ve used acoustic
telemetry, radio telemetry, and then satellite tracking. So we’re learning a lot
about their movement paths and their areas of residence. (elegant music) They’ve been around the globe but they’re hardwired to
come back to the very place where they were born,
to lay their own eggs. If an animal was born on East Key, she’ll come back to East Key. She’s not gonna go use Loggerhead Key or one of the other keys here. We all take turns every 30 minutes walking about this beach in particular takes about 10 minutes to walk around. If they nest, we let them nest and mark off where the nest
is and then we work her up, just like the same workup we
would do with a little turtle. She’s corralled in a box because they can be 400 pounds and they’re very powerful. They’ll do that about every two weeks during a season. And when we get recaptures
that’s really exciting, because you know the animal still
survived wherever she went. – [Narrator] In order for
turtles to lay their eggs, the conditions have to be just right. Ideally, they’ll encounter high tides, dark beaches, and warm
sea surface temperatures. Otherwise, they’ll do something
called a false crawl, in which a turtle will make
their way onto the beach only to turn back around. – [Kristen] We don’t know
really why they false crawl but something isn’t right. Maybe they’re not feeling contractions, maybe the conditions just
aren’t right at that spot, maybe they dig and they
hit a piece of coral or a root or something like that. (spry music) – [Narrator] And false crawls
can become more frequent. Rising sea levels reduce the amount of available beach space and rising temperatures can drastically effect sand temperature. Studies show that cooler nest temperatures
produce more males, while warmer nests
generally produce females. – With sea level rise and climate change they’re threatened. I think we’re a little more concerned about their trajectory
of their population. Because it’s generally
not good for the turtle. (calm music) We’ve learned a lot about these Dry Tortugas turtles, and it really is valuable to me to know that they value the research that we’re contributing. We’re answering questions
that are important that haven’t been asked before. It’s definitely demanding, but
at the same time, I think it’s one of the most rewarding
things we could ever do. There aren’t many people allowed on this little patch of land so I feel very privileged
to be able to play a role in figuring these turtles out and being in this very special place. (grave music) (loud eruption) – [Narrator] Italy’s Mount Etna is one of the most active
volcano’s in the world. It erupts nearly every year, spewing lava and clouds of ash. But for Claudio Lanzafame, the black powder is an untapped adventure. (scraping rocks) (light curious music) – My name is Claudio, and I scale ski over volcanos. (light music) (light electronic music) It’s incredible. (curious spry music) – [Narrator] Siggi Rafn Hilmarsson is an Icelandic baker with
an unconventional oven. He bakes bread by burying it underground where it’s heated for 24
hours by nearby hot springs. – It’s very common to see
hot springs here in Iceland. There is constant lava crawling under us. This lava is heating up water and this water comes
boiling up on the surface. We could put it in the oven, but this is much more fun. – [Narrator] Iceland is one of the most volcanic regions in the world. With 30 active volcanos at any time. That helps create an
abundance of hot springs, some with boiling hot water. And Siggi uses them to his advantage. He specializes in baking rúgbrauð, a traditional Icelandic rye bread recipe that dates back hundreds of years. – I know for sure that in this village I can track it down as far as late 1800 something. My grandmother taught my
mother how to bake this bread and my mother taught me. In the hot spring rye bread recipe we have rye, flower, sugar, baking powder, salt, and milk. We put this in a pot, we put butter in the pot then we wrap it with plastic foil and we put it down in our hot spring hole for 24 hours. It’s very obvious to see if the ground is hot or not. I never use a thermometer. If I need to check the heat I just use this one. Our biggest challenge is rain. If it rains a lot these holes that we are using can cool down. And if they are not hot enough, obviously the bread does
not bake completely. (spry music) Everybody eats our bread, our visitors, the locals. Hot spring rye bread has a unique taste that you don’t get from ovens. The texture of this
bread is quite special. It’s quite heavy, it’s
not a typical light bread. When you show this to
travelers that come to Iceland and you see their faces, they go “wow”, then you start to think that this is quite amazing actually. (energetic music) – There’s lots of amazing
weather phenomenon happening all over our planet, but what’s going on
outside of our atmosphere? My name is Leland Melvin, and as an astronaut I can tell you weather conditions in space can be a matter of life and death. Especially during a space walk. (elegant music) When we prepare for a space walk, we have to be able to deal with temperatures that range from positive 250 degrees Fahrenheit in the sun and minus 250 degrees in the shade. (elegant beat music) But in our space suit we have the ability to withstand
those temperature extremes because we have visors
that reflect the sun away from our eyes and
we have heated gloves as well as a heated suit. And then we have cooling that allows us to stay cool during those temperature extremes. A solar flare is a sudden
flash of brightness observed near the suns surface that emits X-ray and UV radiation. In space, the radiation
levels can be deadly. When we’re notified of a solar
flare on the space station, we retreat to what we call the dog house. This dog house is lined with water bags that allow us to block the radiation coming from the sun before it gets to our bodies. And that’s where we go to keep from getting exposed
to high energy radiation. (mysterious music) As we go further out
into our solar system, weather events become
more and more extreme. Jupiter, our solar system’s biggest planet, also features its most impressive storm, the Great Red Spot. The gigantic tempest is
twice as wide as planet Earth and has winds that reach
up to 400 miles per hour. It’s been swirling over
Jupiter for at least 150 years. Further out, Neptune features
its own great big storm. It takes up the planets entire atmosphere. Neptune is our solar
systems windiest planet, with wind speeds that can reach up to 1500 miles per hour. That’s nine times faster than the strongest winds
ever recorded on earth. To find the strongest known
winds in our universe, we have to go well
beyond our solar system. Astrophysicists at York University have discovered the
fastest winds ever recorded near a supermassive black hole. These wind speeds clock in at 125 million miles per hour. I hope my crew never gets caught up in anything like that. (intense music) – [Narrator] Known as
the land of fire and ice, Iceland is an island of extremes where people wage a relentless
war against the elements. – It’s seriously unpredictable weather. It’s basically like a battle zone of different high pressure/
low pressure areas. Anything can happen. – [Narrator] Dangerous conditions mean people can find
themselves in serious trouble and in need of rescue. But there’s a problem, the small country has no army or government program to help. So citizens formed the Icelandic
Search and Rescue Team, known as ICE-SAR, a
national emergency force. They’re everyday people, willing to risk their lives to save others in the worst conditions imaginable. (wind blowing) – You’re going out in the conditions when everyone else is
supposed to be inside. So you have to be a little bit crazy but in a good way. (adventurous music) – ICE-SAR is the community of volunteers that responds to calls for help all year around in Iceland. I think to take part in ICE-SAR you just have to be willing to put forward the skills that you have. I sometimes consider a
rescue team like a village, you need every kind of person
to make everything work. – I think it’s kind of amazing because it’s all volunteerss. We have professors, taxi
drivers, carpenters, plumbers, office workers, just name it. Men and women. All kinds of people. It’s very hard to imagine Iceland without our association and our teams. (excited music) – [Narrator] Iceland’s
breathtaking landscape attracts tourists and adventure seekers from all over the world. But that beauty can lure people to a false sense of security. – Weather conditions can change faster than anything else. You can have a sunny day, and in two minutes it’s a storm. Wind, rain, even snow in the summer time. – People are just going for a hike and they’re pretty confident that the mountain that they’re going on is not dangerous. They have the lower glaciers which have become quite a
popular tourist attraction. And people are going for walks on these and they are full of crevasses, extremely dangerous, super slippery. And then they fall over
and hurt themselves. Then they have to rely
on Search and Rescue to come and find them. – [Narrator] For average citizens to gain the skills needed
to be part of ICE-SAR, they go through a rigorous
18 month training program. They learn mountaineering,
climbing, and orienteering. – It takes a huge skillset, but when you can deal with any weather, then you can go out and help people. (sombre music) – Across the country I think our teams get 4-5 callers per day. And our people, they’re
running from their own work or their family to join the team. – When I get called out,
we have three codes. It’s F1 – high priority, life at stake. F2 – not as high priority. And F3 – easygoing. When you get called out, high priority, and you get your text and it says a child, then your heart goes pumping almost out of your chest and you run out. I don’t even say goodbye
to my children or wife. (heroic music) I can remember one call, a boy, got lost in Selfoss. All I could think about was my son. If he got lost I would like
to have everyone helping. So a lot of emotions comes
up when you get called up. (radio chatter) (hopeful music) – I’m proud of the unity and the fact that people
are willing to sacrifice their spare time to help others. – The feeling that I get
when we rescue someone. It doesn’t have to be me
that finds the person, can be another group
searching somewhere else but we’re searching for the same person. When someone gets found, you
get this wellness feeling, we did something right. – They are our heroes in so many ways. But in Icelandic culture we
don’t do a lot of hero talk. – No, I’m not a hero. I’m just a part of a team. – I’m not a hero, no. I’m just a normal person. – [Jon Svanberg] I’m very
proud of the association and what they have accomplished. They’ve saved a lot of lives. (elegant music) – [Narrator] California’s iconic sequoia’s are the largest trees on earth. These giants have lived
for thousands of years surviving war, famine and
the rise of globalization. But California’s ongoing
drought could mean disaster. These enormous trees are already showing signs of weakness
never seen before. Anthony Ambrose, and
a team of researchers, are heading into the forest to climb hundreds of feet in the air and see what can be done to
save these magnificent trees. (heroic music) (lighthearted music) – Sequoia National Park is just absolutely amazing. A giant sequoia is the
largest tree on the planet. And they have these huge orange trunks and massive sprawling crowns that have huge limbs. Some of the branches are
five, six feet thick. They live to be more than
three thousand years old. I’m fascinated with how they grow and how they are able to
get to be so old and so big. It’s just an amazing experience to be able to study them so
intimately and so closely. California’s currently in the
middle of a severe drought. The giant sequoia trees
appear to be showing some symptoms of some drought stress. More stress than we’ve ever
measured in giant sequoia trees and we want to know why. (adventurous music) Our research entails climbing
the giant sequoia trees and measuring their water status basically an index of how stressed they are relative to the environment. The water status of all plants is kind of like the equivalent
of blood pressure in a human. It’s just a basic measure of how much water they have available to them to continue to function and grow. So we clip little shoots of foliage and put ’em in this device that is able to measure how much tension the water column is at at the time that you cut that little piece of foliage. We put the little piece of foliage, leaf end down, into this
pressurized chamber. And the amount of pressure it takes to push the water back out of the stem is equal to the amount
of tension it was under when you cut that piece of foliage. When water availability declines, such as during a drought, that creates a lot more
tension in the tree. When the tension becomes too great then tiny little air
bubbles form in the wood. And when it gets bad enough then the plant suffers and starts to die. (concerned music) – There’s a couple reasons why we need to climb to
the tops of these trees. (hopeful music) As water moves up the tree, it’s fighting gravity and friction. And the top of the tree is gonna be the most stressed part of the tree. So in order to get a really good idea of how stressed they are, we need to go to the very tippy top. It’s a really humbling experience because you’re up in the crown of these massive ancient things. And they make you feel small. I’m at the top of a very
large giant sequoia tree. We’re waiting for the sunrise because it’s really,
really pretty this morning. In order to get a really
good understanding of how the trees are
responding to the drought we need to understand
different time periods. We climb up into the giant sequoia trees at predawn hours before the sun rises and measure their water status kind of at their most relaxed state when they’re not losing
water to the atmosphere. And then we also go back
in the middle of the day when they’re the most
active and most stressed and measure their water status and collect leaf samples
at that point as well. (hopeful music) Giant sequoias really need fire, it’s a natural part of the ecosystem here. They can use this information to prioritize where they
do prescribed burning to be able to thin out some
of the understory trees that are competing for the water and hopefully provide more water to the giant sequoia trees. It’s important to realize and remember that these trees have been
living for thousands of years and they’ve dealt with
pretty severe events, fires and droughts, in the past. And they’re amazingly resilient. One of the things that really is remarkable about these trees is their ability to recover
from drought type events. The question is, as conditions change, as temperatures continue
to increase globally, are conditions gonna change to a point where they may reach some threshold where they’re not able to recover from these type of events? It’s an absolutely
amazing, unique experience to be able to climb into these trees. We wanna preserve them;
we want them to be here; and we want them to be healthy and happy. (adventurous music) – [Narrator] It’s a
surprisingly dangerous mission, safely navigate the skies of one of the iconic tourist
destinations in America. The helicopter pilots of Niagara Falls battle extreme wind and
unpredictable weather conditions all to give tourists that
one spectacular view. – Sometimes it is very scary, you not to let the fear overcome you so you control the aircraft, you get it back to a safe environment so you can go home at night. That’s the name of the
game, go home. (chuckle) (flowing and crashing water) (hopeful music) My name’s Stanley Snopkowski. I’ve been flying over Niagara falls about 20 years, and each day is different. I spent 20 years in the military. I’ve flown in Germany, England, Vietnam, and the weather here is
nothing like anything else. (anxious music) (helicopter blades whirling) Niagara Falls is a beautiful, but like anything beautiful
there’s a ugly side to it. The weather here can change quite rapidly. You can have snow showers
and five minutes later you can have bright sunny blue skies. You have to have a healthy respect for it because it can go wrong
in a matter of minutes. The winds can gust up to
30 to 40 miles an hour. When the wind comes around the buildings it tends to create mechanical turbulence, either an updraft or
downdraft or swirling. And then sometimes when you
make the turn into the wind it’s almost sometimes
like hitting a brick wall. I’ve had instances where the aircraft wanted to come apart, quit flying and we
nursed it to the ground, we got down and we walked away. And it could have ended up differently without the training,
without the knowledge. (chuckling) (sombre music) As the only pilot onboard the aircraft, if something happens
it’s my responsibility to get everybody down safely. I don’t like being
scared in the helicopter. I’m not a thrill seeker, I don’t take a lot of unnecessary chances. I have a skill, I have knowledge, I know my aircraft and
I know my capabilities and I try not to exceed those. I sometimes think that Mother Nature is not my friend today because of the winds or
because of the rain or snow. You deal with that. You hopefully come out on the good end. Or the other thing is is you just sit there and
say, “Okay, you win today. I’m not gonna fly.” (chuckling) (adventurous music)
I look at the Falls and I see the beauty of nature. Some days just after a
major storm comes through the air is so clear. You have maybe a hundred miles visibility. And it’s just awe inspiring
to be able to see all that and see the falls from a
different angle, I just love it. (enchanting music) (elegant music) – [Narrator] There’s a lot to love about living in a big, bright city. People, culture, late night food. But there’s something missing. It’s there but you can’t see it. The night sky. (homely music)
This is the story about a small town in Colorado. – Actually, two small towns in Colorado. – [Narrator] That are devoted to space. – Westcliffe has a
population of 564 residents, and Silver Cliff has a population of 575. This used to be a mining community and then it evolved into
a railroad community and then into a ranching community. We’re always looking to do something that will bring people into our community and lately that seems to be we need to invest in our sky. – [Narrator] So they made
light pollution their enemy. They darkened their towns
so that the night sky could become their star attraction. – Have you ever seen the Milky Way? That goes from horizon to horizon. 88% of the world’s population has never seen the Milky Way. It’s the most magnificent
thing in the world, that’s what we see here. – [Narrator] But for the towns to go dark, they needed to cover all of their lights. Not just street lamps, but the lights outside every
house and ranch near town. – That wasn’t easy. This is a frontier town
and I can tell you, frontier people don’t like
being told what to do. We had to win their hearts and minds. – [Narrator] It took 10 years. They passed ordinances, raised money to cover the street lights, and even built an observatory. The darker the town became, the more people saw the light. In 2016, the valley’s dark sky was designated as one of
the darkest in the world, drawing visitors from all over. (calm music) (dialogue drowned out by music) – [Man] Okay, might need a
six pack of ’em. (chuckles) (background chatter) – Well I was really hoping we’d be able to see Saturn by now. – Yeah, me too. – That a community would
decide to dim its lights and help everyone to appreciate the beauty of the night
sky is an amazing thing. – You come to a place like this and the stars just burst and it’s remarkable. (calm music) – Not a lot of people are lucky enough to see the dark sky as
our ancestors saw it, and I feel that we’re a very special place to be able to look at the stars as people did thousands of years ago. – [Man] It’s a humbling thing. Suddenly, you realize
you can almost touch it and you’re now a part
of the bigger universe. And so it’s just a wonderful experience to see the dark skies, and that’s what we’re trying to preserve.

100 thoughts on “Fly High with the Thrill Seekers

  • February 12, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    one dislike??? WHYYY

  • February 15, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    Just awesome channel, they have great stories and very important messages. It gives me hope in humanity and society that there is people who are actually taking steps and doing things to secure life on this planet and forest.

  • February 16, 2017 at 12:08 am

    Mind-blowing, heart-warrming!

  • February 23, 2017 at 2:59 am

    its good to see they finally got a "brother" up in space…..

  • March 6, 2017 at 1:23 am

    your channel is the most inspirational one. I love your videos, graphics and storytelling. everything is perfect.

  • March 11, 2017 at 9:04 am

    i love this documentary sooooooooo muchhhh

  • April 16, 2017 at 9:44 am

    This Channel is absolutely amazing. You guys produce the highest quality and most inspiring content of any channel I've ever come across. Seriously, every video is a work of art.

  • April 21, 2017 at 8:34 am

    u deserve so many more subs and views. love it. thank u, and thank u to the amazing people doing these unbelievable things for good.

  • April 28, 2017 at 10:19 am

    This tree climber is my fucking dream, how great would that be to climb one of the biggest trees in the world, def would smoke a doobie top of the tree and have myself nice spiritual vibes

  • May 2, 2017 at 6:21 am

    this kind of channel should exist more in this youtube.
    I love this channel!

  • May 4, 2017 at 5:27 pm

    the landhelgisgæslan (coast guard) is a government agency and they have SAR helicopters and help us out all the time

  • May 13, 2017 at 6:08 pm

    Perfect video for my ADHD! All kinds of interesting stories 🙂

  • May 22, 2017 at 3:48 am

    Aaawe the turtle lady was pregnant. That makes me even happier.

  • May 23, 2017 at 2:30 am

    Rising sea levels… BS ! I have lived in S Florida 51 years…. ADAPT2030 here on you tube ! Mini Ice age starting !!!

  • May 23, 2017 at 2:35 am

    False Crawl = People messing with Turtles

  • May 26, 2017 at 1:51 pm

    'That's Amazing'? THIS IS AMAZING!

  • May 26, 2017 at 2:34 pm


  • May 26, 2017 at 2:57 pm

    I feel so sad for trees now! 🙁

  • May 26, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    Youtube really recommened a good channel this time ❤❤❤❤

  • May 26, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    I dont mind if the number of subscribers isnt the one people expect this chanel to have. The only thing I mind, is that your vídeos get lots of views. I mean, having subscribers sounds really important, but of what I've heard what really pays off are the views, so as long as you have many views and as long as Youtube keeps supporting you economically to keep on filming these beautiful documentaries you guys have my absolute support. I love you guys, please never stop being as unique as you are <3

  • May 26, 2017 at 7:53 pm

    Wow thats amazing!😃

  • May 26, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    How does this video have dislikeds

  • May 27, 2017 at 3:04 am

    I don't like the turtle one….not because i hate turtles! I LOVE TURTLES! But they are taking blood, paint them, and put a device on them! Like WTF…

  • May 27, 2017 at 3:28 am

    "I have a big bick"

    you read that wrong

  • May 27, 2017 at 4:18 am

    These people are the real hulk…These people need to be with Marvel!!!

  • May 27, 2017 at 5:01 am

    my favorite channel on youtube

  • May 27, 2017 at 5:36 am

    This is a beautiful channel! Why haven't you have a TV channel yet? This is really great!

  • May 27, 2017 at 6:25 am

    volcanic skiing…now I've seen everything, holy shit

  • May 27, 2017 at 9:05 am

    Who ever made this videos are geniouses

  • May 27, 2017 at 10:52 am

    Why?!?! Does people do this…!?!?…

  • May 27, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    gj Great Big Story! You are better than Buzzfeed or Vox.. Too bad that not that many people come to see these amazing documentaries

  • May 27, 2017 at 11:37 pm

    ice-sar crew is what every town should be like

  • May 27, 2017 at 11:53 pm

    Amazing journey wow jst wow

  • May 28, 2017 at 6:36 am

    you should make a TV show on discovery channel!

  • May 28, 2017 at 7:45 am

    bro how fast is your internet ? I feel like this matters lol

  • May 28, 2017 at 8:54 am

    28:55 "California's ongoing drought"
    California now "OH GOD, PLEASE MAKE THE RAIN STOP!!!"

  • May 28, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    40k to go 🙂

  • May 28, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    i just love it!!!!

  • May 28, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    40 to the mil !!!

  • May 28, 2017 at 11:20 pm

    This video is worthy to have more than 1k of likes

  • May 29, 2017 at 12:34 am

    Great Big Story – Jr. Buzzfeed

  • May 29, 2017 at 3:46 am

    this is what I wanna be when I'll grow up

  • June 1, 2017 at 12:38 pm

    So, powerful video.

  • June 2, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    Dear Great Big Story,

    I love your videos very, very much and find them very interesting. But please, PLEASE, for the love of god, DO NOT ADVERTISE!!! IT IS PATHETIC AND BEGGING IT FOR VIEWS!

    Thank you,

    Great Big Story Viewer

  • June 4, 2017 at 8:42 am


  • June 4, 2017 at 12:30 pm

    Holy crap I would want to go to the turtle island just for a holiday because it looks beautiful

  • June 4, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    I wish there will be no war any more cause if there is we will die

  • July 3, 2017 at 12:19 pm


    I'd like to translate this into Arabic; so could you please open Add subtitlecc on ?

    Thank you.

  • July 17, 2017 at 7:27 am

    3:19 i did that last week with ponderosa pines. That smell of sap made all the measurements sweet:)

  • September 28, 2017 at 5:51 pm

    do one on filthyfrank next

  • November 8, 2017 at 1:42 am

    Most respect to the people out there

  • November 19, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    Anybody know what the piece of music is @ 35:30

  • November 29, 2017 at 4:53 am

    great big reupload

  • December 11, 2017 at 12:21 am

    Iceland seems to have such a great sense of community. Too bad the weather would kill me. Too cold!

  • December 20, 2017 at 8:45 pm

    Top notch.

  • December 28, 2017 at 2:12 pm

    It's amazing! Thanks for sharing this for free

  • January 3, 2018 at 4:40 pm

    Salute to ICE-SAR from Finland!!

    Indeed you are real heros!!

  • January 15, 2018 at 12:52 am

    You guys should do a great big story on great big story. You guys have delivered amazing and inspirational videos and have travelled to dangerous and beautiful places to bring us these amazing stories.

  • February 19, 2018 at 1:45 am

    That camera man though

  • February 27, 2018 at 1:40 pm

    Wingsuit Flying???!!!! That’s gotta be more thrilling than sky diving . Ellen is my goal! I’m definitely looking into that.

  • March 8, 2018 at 7:10 am

    Instead of saving money for universal studios…I'm save up to go see the Sequoias trees

  • March 15, 2018 at 8:48 am

    Love all those short video,s !

  • March 16, 2018 at 5:28 am

    Eu amo esse canal! Obrigada <3

  • March 27, 2018 at 3:49 am

    arivonil banack

  • March 28, 2018 at 5:55 pm

    Beautiful channel. Awesome people. To all my fellow human beings. Don't just watch greatness. Participate in greatness

  • April 1, 2018 at 3:36 am

    Jumpsuit? 😱 oooh man. I would love to have the courage she had.

  • April 12, 2018 at 3:44 pm

    Love the content. Just earned another sub

  • April 13, 2018 at 4:09 pm

    Respect for Icelanders 👍

  • April 16, 2018 at 2:48 am


  • April 26, 2018 at 2:31 am

    turtle: wtf? they're jumpin' on me from a fuckin boat when i've to breath??? callin' it rodeo …. damn man what a day … paintin me? !""§§$%& .. oh they're lettin me go off a lil dumb beach … thanks .. wtf .. she grabs my butt! # metoooooo serious

    wth this hashtag got into a whateverblueoceanthing oO(__)~

  • April 26, 2018 at 4:20 pm

    great big story! i have a story.I lived through getting sucked up into a thunderstorm in my hanglider during a xc race in idaho.

  • May 2, 2018 at 11:34 pm

    Next Nat. Geo

  • May 21, 2018 at 3:34 pm

    Love the people from Iceland. Amazing country.

  • May 31, 2018 at 2:33 am

    Great and very inspiring channel

  • May 31, 2018 at 10:07 pm

    I used to be a thrill-seeker, took risks, quite a few. But I wouldn't wing-suit jump. I bungee-jumped off a bridge, but there were FOUR cables and i checked out every aspect of the equipment before I jumped. I have acrophobia so became a GA pilot and it helped, but I wouldn't do ANY kind of jumping today! I still do some white-water rafting, but not in Zambezi or any other places that have huge risks. When you get older, you value what's left of your life a little more, I think!

  • June 3, 2018 at 6:04 am

    This channel is just awesome

  • June 7, 2018 at 5:19 am

    I can't believe a person who says ekspecially ever made the cut for astronaut.

  • June 9, 2018 at 12:42 pm

    The strongest wind in space?…………in a kind of way, yeah maybe….but not really……

  • June 13, 2018 at 11:26 am

    I love my job as a teacher but I must say that after watching this I know I have not truly lived. Thank you for for reminding me that I need to take care of myself and live. After all, we have only one life to live.

  • June 15, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    How are the turtle people taking risks

  • June 16, 2018 at 5:01 pm

    Woho skiing on a volcano looks so cool! he would definitively look like a boring nerd if he wore a helmet.

  • September 5, 2018 at 12:36 am

    No turtles volunteered for this intervention and harassment. 200 million years. im sure they will go farther than so called man(UN)kind. Keep that science cashflow goin….

  • September 23, 2018 at 5:40 pm


  • October 4, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Is there anyway that I could contact the woman who you guys did the story about the sea turtles with. This has really inspired me. I want to be a Marine Biologist and turtles are my favorite animal and I just have some questions for her.

  • October 7, 2018 at 4:31 am

    Rising sea levels BOLLOCKS. Sand-pumping projects are putting many beaches at risk. Sand in Miami is being constantly washed away, because sand further out is being pumped for building.

  • December 8, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    meanwhile im here wasting space and time

  • June 29, 2019 at 9:32 pm

    I do not want to go to Iceland now

  • July 16, 2019 at 1:52 am

    I didn't know Red Green was a pilot! 35:05

  • July 28, 2019 at 6:27 am

    Can I come hang out with these people?

  • July 28, 2019 at 6:30 am

    How the hell did the guy get the rope up the sequoia to be able to climb up? What came first the rope or the climber

  • October 7, 2019 at 7:05 am

    Fir 10,000 dollars? That was so rude!LMFAO! We get that here in singing contest!

  • October 23, 2019 at 9:52 am

    What a vsco girl 😂 10:48

  • October 23, 2019 at 10:20 am


  • October 25, 2019 at 10:55 pm

    No one:
    The guy skiing on volcanoes: I’m about to end snows whole career

  • October 26, 2019 at 6:22 am

    12:20 they just jumped a turtle😅

  • November 17, 2019 at 11:47 pm

    "theyre very powerful" – fat turtle proceeds to walk along the beach like a geriatric snail LMFAO


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *