Inside the Edit: Keeping It Real with Edward Muggridge

Q&A with young filmmaker and rising whitewater star

When we came across the latest edit from 18-year-old Canadian shredder Edward Muggridge, we knew we’d found something special. Not only does this teenager have a clear whitewater talent and ambition, his filmmaking is nothing to blink at. Our Week In Review video curator, Kai Myers, caught up with Muggridge to get the scoop on his latest film project Keep It Real – Part 1 about Muggridge’s quest to compete in the 2016 Whitewater Grand Prix.

Kai Myers: Who is Edward Muggridge? Tell us a little about yourself.
Edward Muggridge: I was born in Toronto, Ontario, right in the heart of the big city and with literally zero kayaking near by. I didn't actually start kayaking until I was 13 years old when a friend convinced me to go to the Keener Program with him on the Ottawa River. It took a few years for me to even like kayaking, but once I fell in love, things took off!

Photo by Alfredo Martinez
Photo by Alfredo Martinez

Who is the most inspirational paddler for you?
Top few are Rush Sturges, Patrick Camblin, Benny Marr and Substantial Media House (Evan Garcia and Fred Norquist). Picking just one, I would say Rush Sturges. The first kayaking movie I ever saw was Dream Result. It is still my favourite, and I actually watch it a lot. The way Rush has approached kayaking is what I want to model my approach after. If I can one day inspire kids as much as he has inspired me with kayaking and filmmaking, then I will have accomplished more than I'd ever want in life.

To date, what would you consider your greatest paddling achievement?
Hmm, that's a tough one… I would probably say that my biggest achievement so far was running every rapid on my first time down the Lower Jalacingo in Mexico. That was the scariest day of my life. My other one would definitely be running the Bridge Rapid in Dolbeau-Mistassinni. Both of these are highlighted in the film.

You said that you want a bid to the Whitewater Grand Prix. If you got that, what would be next?
To be honest, I'm not sure, but I know I want to reach a point in kayaking where I'm helping advance the sport. I might start doing some smaller expeditions to get some experience for the future, but I just want to do things bigger and better than what has been done before, if that makes sense. All in good time though… (Also, I really want to go to Iceland!)

Photo by Alfredo Martinez
Photo by Alfredo Martinez

What projects are you currently working on?
Right now I'm just playing around with some things for "Keep It Real – Part 2" mostly drone filming due to a lost camera in a recent car crash, but I'm working on getting it fixed. My biggest focus right now is to heal up and just start taking things much more seriously: getting stronger, faster and more fit so that my body can keep up with my kayaking. Now is time for a change and it's been a long time coming.

What is the best paddling trip you've been on?
The best trip I've been on has certainly been any time spent in the PNW. The rivers in the area are unmatched by any I have ever run (which isn't that many). It is also the home of the Little White which is hands down my favourite river. This year was a low water season, but I'm so stoked to go and spend some time there with all of the spring flood waterfalls and rivers that come in. I've barely scratched the surface! Also, the people there are just incredible.

Photo by Abe Herrera
Photo by Abe Herrera

Which style of paddling is your favorite?
I really love big wave surfing, but I'm not very good at it. I'd have to say steep creeking is my absolute favourite. Runs like the Ashlu Box Canyon, the Little White Salmon or the Rio Puesco in Chile are the best!

The video is very well made. Do you see a yourself pursuing a career in cinematography or photography?
I hope so! Kayaking is Number 1 for me, but film takes a close second. My dream is to make a kayaking movie that rivals a Sherpas Cinema or Brainfarm movie. It's not an easy one to make come true, but it's not the end result that matters; it's how you got there or what you learned along the way.

Anything else you want to say about your paddling goals or the video?
At the moment not too much. I just that I hope that I can change my lifestyle enough and work hard enough to earn that Grand Prix spot. Still have a long way to go, but I think I've got a fighting chance!

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