A Film by Tom Byars and Chris Cogan.

Join nature adventurer and writer John Lane as he embarks on an epic canoe journey from his tiny back yard creek in South Carolina all the way to the vast Atlantic Ocean.
During the three hundred mile float trip with friends, Lane sets out to fulfill his life-long dream of “Paddling to the Sea” from his back yard.
Along the way Lane encounters the history and nature of undiscovered parts of the Carolinas such as ancient Indian artifacts, mysterious fruit growing on trees, and a massive trash dump floating in the middle of a river.
During this humorous and inspiring adventure, Lane reveals our deep-rooted connection to nature and the importance of rivers in our lives.

Press for John Lane's book "My Paddle to the Sea" [UGA Press]:

My Paddle to the Sea
Eleven Days on the River of the Carolinas
John Lane
A journey through South Carolina’s Santee River watershed


"John Lane knows that traveling on a river is the best way to see the land, to remember our history, and to face ourselves. This fine writer’s journey down his own southern waterway is an adventure that can inform and inspire us all."
—Tim Palmer, author of Rivers of America, Lifelines: The Case for River Conservation, and Youghiogheny: Appalachian River

"Countless readers across the South, and well beyond, will profit from trekking right along with John Lane, who is a very gifted natural teacher and a great literary companion."
—Bland Simpson, co-author with Scott Taylor, The Coasts of Carolina

Book Synopsis:
Three months after a family vacation in Costa Rica ends in tragedy when two fellow rafters die on the flooded Rio Reventazón, John Lane sets out with friends from his own backyard in upcountry South Carolina to calm his nerves and to paddle to the sea.
Like Huck Finn, Lane sees a river journey as a portal to change, but unlike Twain’s character, Lane isn’t escaping. He’s getting intimate with the river that flows right past his home in the Spartanburg suburbs. Lane’s three­hundred-mile float trip takes him down the Broad River and into Lake Marion before continuing down the Santee River. Along the way Lane recounts local history and spars with streamside literary presences such as Mind of the South author W. J. Cash; Henry Savage, author of the Rivers of America Series volume on the Santee; novelist and Pulitzer Prize–winner Julia Peterkin; early explorer John Lawson; and poet and outdoor writer Archibald Rutledge. Lane ponders the sites of old cotton mills; abandoned locks, canals, and bridges; ghost towns fallen into decay a century before; Indian mounds; American Revolutionary and Civil War battle sites; nuclear power plants; and boat landings. Along the way he encounters a cast of characters Twain himself would envy—perplexed fishermen, catfish clean­ers, river rats, and a trio of drug-addled drifters on a lonely boat dock a day’s paddle from the sea.
By the time Lane and his companions finally approach the ocean about forty miles north of Charleston they have to fight the tide and set a furious pace. Through it all, paddle stroke by paddle stroke, Lane is reminded why life and rivers have always been wedded together.

for further production inquiries, please contact Tom Byars at : thomas_byars@yahoo.com

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