Colonel Percy Fawcett & The Lost City of Z

“The greatest exploration mystery of the twentieth century” - David Grann, The Lost City of Z


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At the turn of the century, the great Victorian age of exploration was coming to an end; an era that was epitomised by the discoveries of David Livingstone and Captain James Cook was fading out of public consciousness, slowly being replaced by the grim realities of industrialisation.

One of the greatest explorers of the 20th century - Colonel Percival Harrison Fawcett

However, there was still one area left blank on the great wall Atlases of the Royal Geographic Society; a land mass the size of America remained vehemently uncharted since the sixteenth century. The first Europeans called it El Dorado, and thousands of men died looking it.

“Fawcett expedition…to penetrate land whence none returned.”

Christened the ‘green hell’, this intractable territory - buried deep in the Amazonian rainforest - supposedly contained a complex civilisation, reposed with monolithic pillars, intricate temples and so much gold that indigenous tribes ground down the precious metal and blew it upon their bodies from head to foot. Thousands of expeditions tried and failed to find this lost city, with entire armies disappearing in the pursuit of the fortune which this fabled land promised.

Pacific Rim star Charlie Hunnam tackles the role of quintessentially British explorer, Colonel Percy Fawcett in the upcoming film, The Lost City of Z.

The most iconic of these ill-fated expeditions was led by Colonel Percival Harrison Fawcett, one of Britain’s most accomplished explorers. Colonel Fawcett became so convinced of the cities legitimacy that on a cold day in 1925 a party consisting of Fawcett, his son and his son’s best friend disembarked from Hoboken Docks assured that the civilisation, now christened ‘Z’, was within his grasp.

Based on true accounts the film traces Fawcett's route down the Xingu river a giant tributary of the Amazon.

After months of telegrams shuttled back and forth from deep inside the Amazon detailing the expeditions’ supposedly successful progress, the world stood still as without warning communications abruptly stopped. The last communication dated May 20th 1925, detailed Fawcett’s defiantly confident position that the lost city would be reached by August that same year.

Many believed that Fawcett and his party had simply died in the harsh environment, killed by animals or poisoned arrows from tribal archers but some maintained that Fawcett had successfully discovered the fabled civilisation and had remained in the jungle determined to live a freer life.

Fawcett was a well respected explorer famed for successfully chartering previously unexplored territories with the bare minimum of equipment.

The Mystery of the City and what happened to Colonel Percy Fawcett has captured the imagination of amateur explorers for years. Now, after nearly 100 years and several failed attempts we are finally beginning to understand what happened to Fawcett’s fateful expedition.

Based upon the best-selling book by New York Times journalist David Grann, and founded upon unprecedented access to Fawcett’s own memoirs, the true account of this spellbinding story is finally being adapted for the big screen.

From acclaimed director James Gray, and starring Charlie Hunnam, Robert Pattinson and Sienna Miller, The Lost City Of Z is an epic adventure based on the life of one of Britain’s greatest explorers. To celebrate its cinema release on March 24th, we’re offering you the chance to win an adventurous break for two in Symonds Yat, with an unforgettable canoeing expedition down the River Wye and £100 to spend at Blacks.

The Lost City of Z releases nationwide in cinemas on March 24th.

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Welcome! Willkommen! Konnichiwa!
(whispering) Now lean in we're going to tell you a secret…
Sam is not actually an outdoorsman! ...yet.

In fact Sam is actually quite new to this whole outside doors business, is that how you say it?
Sam lived in London for 4 years and claims that the closest he got to green space was when he re-painted his flat.
However, after moving to Japan to live and work as an English teacher Sam had the opportunity (and the time) to explore the length and breadth of the southern most isles of sleepy, rural Kyushu. It was here where the obsession with the great outdoors started. Nothing propels you faster along a trail than the knowledge of a long hot soak in one of Japan’s many Natural hot springs. Sometimes buried deep in the mountains!

On his travels Sam visited the hiking island of Yakushima, skied in Blistering snow in Hokkaido and completed a 3 day trek through the Tu Lan cave system in Cambodia, but more on that later.

For now though, Sam is making up for lost time by spending more of it in the great British countryside and exploring the beautiful hikes and trails we have right here on our doorsteps. Sam will be writing for the more lightweight outdoorist, soaking up as much knowledge he can about Modern Bushcraft, Design and Function, Books and much more.

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