Recent Projects:

America’s Forests with Rolling Stone keyboardist, Chuck Leavell

Scott has been shooting this PBS project for several years with his great friend, producer Kate Raisz from 42 Degrees North films

Presenter, Chuck Leavell is an acclaimed musician as the keyboardist for such legends as the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton. He’s also a tree farmer in Georgia and he and his wife, Rose have won accolades for their conservation work.

In recent years, the Production team and Chuck have travelled to forests in Minnesota and temperate rain forest in rainy Oregon; They’ve explored creative uses of beetle-kill pine in Colorado – including drums (music permeates the entire series) and handcrafted Meier skis; Scott reckons his favourite forests are the Long Leaf Pines in Georgia for their density and diversity. This is a tree that once covered up to 90, 000, 000 acres in the SE United States but is now reduced to around 5% of its pre-settlement range due to fire suppression (it thrives in fire) and clear-cutting.

More to come as this production rolls on.

photo: James Edward Mills

See Alan’s Farst’s feature-length Documentary – Chuck Leavell: The Tree Man

Interactive Swamp Tour, Lafitte, Louisiana

The Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve was established to preserve nationally significant examples of the rich natural and cultural resources of Louisiana’s Mississippi Delta region. The park seeks to illustrate the influence of environment and history on the development of a unique regional culture. Alligators abound!

Scott filmed a museum project for the town of Lafitte the in bayou with producer (and Louisiana native), Laurence Cumbo (who he met at National Geographic).

Ethiopia Cure World Blindness Project

Scott was greatly touched by his work with the Himalayan Cataract project in 2003. ( Doctors Ruit (Nepal) and Tabin (USA) are ophthalmologists who seek to eradicate as much unnecessary blindness from the world as possible. Operating in Nepal, Ethiopia and Ghana, they are able to operate on many patients daily and return those blinded by cataracts to full vision for about USD$25 per patient. In April 2022 Scott travelled with the team to Ethiopia to film an ongoing project for the foundation.

Ongoing National Park Service media updates

Another ongoing project is Scott’s work with the NPS. In 2022 he spent time in the North Cascades National Park (Washington State) shooting with local climbing guides. Climbing the iconic Forbidden peak out of Boston basin had Scott back filming in the mountains.

Scott also shot for Lake Clarke National Park and Preserve in Alaska. Lake Clark preserves the ancestral homelands of the Dena’ina people, an intact ecosystem at the headwaters of the largest sockeye salmon fishery in the world, and a rich cultural wilderness.

North Cascades National Park. Forbidden Peak.

Lake Clarke National Park and Preserve, Alaska

iFit Global Workouts

Everest: A Trek to Basecamp, earned Scott yet another Emmy nomination. Notable also, that it was the first interactive workout experience to be nominated for a coveted sports Emmy. He filmed friend and renowned Mountain Guide and multiple Everest summitter (and now iFit presenter) Lydia Bradey before his covid summit of Everest in 2021.

Other iFit projects include treks to the summit of Kilimanjaro (the highest point in Africa), iFit China and many projects throughout the US. Scott even won a bronze medal in a 10km in Arizona – while filming (this means he was running backwards at least half of the time!)

Summit of Kilimanjaro


Shanghai, China

Scott Everest 2021

Scott summits (3rd time), with covid and still delivers the goods



Scott summited Everest for the third time on May 11. Turns out he also had covid. He didn’t feel well on summit day. It wasn’t until he arrived in Kathmandu and was tested that he found out he was positive. Although covid on Everest was denied, once we established that it was there, it became extremely difficult to remove him from the expedition without the actual expedition pulling the pin. It didn’t. They went up.

Everest Take 8

Scott is heading to Nepal this week for two shoots: One is with where he will film with mountaineer, IFMGA guide, numerous Everest summiter and all-round wild woman, Lydia Bradey as they trek to Everest Base camp (EBC). Scott will remain at EBC to await his next project with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation – an Everest clean up on a Sherpa team. Try keeping up with those guys. Ouch.

Scott will be away for 3.5 months by the time he re-enters NZ borders via the 2-week Managed Isolation system. We are feeling nostalgic about easier times of work and travel: Enjoy the video of Obie arriving at Everest Base Camp age 6 in 2013. I (Anna) will keep this blog updated.

Obie age 6, arriving at EBC in 2013 (and noticing that the flags are draped over a big chunk of ice, not rock)

Dream Mountain wins Best Film at the London Mountain Film Festival

November 2019: Scott filmed “Dream Mountain” with Climber-Mother-Adventurer Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita. Pasang travels to Cholatse (6440m/21130ft) with her two-year old son and husband. In a theme common to many mothers, Pasang is troubled at leaving her son at basecamp but the drive to climb is strong. Beautifully shot (of course), evocative Nepal Himalaya, a story told through the eyes of a woman Sherpa alpinist on a Himalayan peak. This film just won Best Mountain Film at the London Mountain Film Festival.

View this post on Instagram

@InLightWorks Productions is thrilled to present the official theatrical trailer for our award-winning film, Dream Mountain. This is the story of @Pasang_Lhamu_Sherpa Akita: a mountaineer, humanitarian, mother, and inspiration who overcomes all obstacles to live her dream. ✨ We hope you enjoy this glimpse of the film before its World Premiere next Saturday, May 2, during the virtual @LondonMountainFilm festival. To sign up for free access to the festival, click the link in our bio. “The dream is coming true.” –Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita ✨ Trailer Edit by Sarah Smalik @ilovesmalik Featuring: Pasang Lhamu Sherpa Akita⁠ @TorakichiAkita & Norbu!⁠ Executive Producer: @CiraCrowell⁠ Director: Kyle Ruddick⁠ @kyleinstagram⁠ Producer: @KeithCarlsen⁠ Cinematographers: @Scott.Simper, Kyle Ruddick, @MichaelClarkPhoto⁠ Editors: Kyle Ruddick + Sarah Smalik⁠ InLightWorks Productions: @saramagss + @st.rebecca⁠ Assistant Editor: Adam Laiben⁠ Colorist: Taylor Black / Apache Color⁠ Sound Design: Greg Conway / Sonic Alchemy⁠ Original Music: Joseph Minadeo + Shinya Sugimonto⁠ Additional Music: The Triplets + Tashi Sherpa⁠ VFX: Robert Brown / Jekyll Works⁠ Graphic Design: Aaron Sain⁠ Climbing Team: Panuru Sherpa, Lhakpa Gyaljen Sherpa + TenginSherpa⁠ Trekking Team: Dawa Tsering Sherpa, Jangmu Sherpa, @tenging.sherpa243, Pemba Sherpa ⁠ Official Media Partner: @alpinistmag ⁠ 💫 #KeepDreaming #PasangLhamuSherpaAkita #DreamMountainFilm #InLightWorksProductions #Nepal #LMFF #LondonMountain #LondonMountainFilmFestival #GiveMeAWoo #TogetherWeCan⁠

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Numerous projects in 2019

Both Scott and his media manager were exceptionally busy in 2019 and only now during the pandemic, are they able to update Scott Simper Productions. Enjoy some stories and accounts over the coming weeks. Stay home and stay healthy. And be kind!

Mongolia: Motorcycling and climbing: Scott joined adventurer Jamie Clarke (his cohort from Everest 2010) to film Jamie and his teenage son Khobi riding motorbikes across Mongolia in a quest to bridge the digital divide between them. After riding the KTM 450’s for 1100 miles, the team of three climb Mongolia’s highest peak: Khüiten Peak (Mongolian: Хүйтэн оргил, lit. “cold peak” ; also as Friendship Peak in China; Chinese: 友谊峰; pinyin: Yǒuyì Fēng) is 4,356 m above sea level and a permanent snow cap in the Altai Range. The international border between China and Mongolia runs across its summit point.

A Mindful Choice

A Mindful Choice.

The connection is Castle Hill Village where we live in New Zealand.  Our neighbours Hop and Sally practice a simple, peaceful style of meditation called Ascension.  An example of the mindset is described in a newsletter received today;

“This week – when you Ascend, don’t Ascend for any reason at all. Don’t do it to get anything, at all. Don’t do it to get rid of thoughts, don’t do it for anything. Not even for peace, not even for rest. Just do it, with wide open innocence, without expectations.
 Show up for sure – keep regularly practicing – but without any insistences, without looking for anything.
 Then you can completely let go and receive what you need to receive, not what you think you want to get.”
The mission of ascension is to create peace – a method to create a peace that is bigger than your problem.  The mission of Hop and Sally is to spread peace and spearheading this film that takes us into Mexican prisons, to Cuban elite ballet schools, and to the West Coast of New Zealand, was a way to scatter peace.
It’s a beautiful film.

“Stunning cinematography combined with the power of people sharing from a place of profound peace delivers a palpable and moving experience”.

“A convincing portrayal of how inner peace is possible for all.” Oaxaca Film Festival

View trailer here


Cave Connection

A few years ago Scott filmed the Cave Connection for Red Bull Media.  He joined notorious caver, Kieran MacKay and crew to find a link between two cave systems in New Zealand – the Nettlebed system and Stormy Pots.  It was spring.  The weather on the surface was all over the show.  I dropped Scott off to meet Kieran for a reconnaisance and you could tell Kieran was immediately stoked to see that Scott is not a big guy. Meaning he could squeeze though the tight spots.

The film was really popular and won awards at various film festivals.  What gets me is that Scott had to do all the squeezes and underwater sections right along there with the caving team.  He’d filmed in caves before but he’s not exactly a regular cave explorer.  Watching this film gives me the creeps.  I’d thought that it was bad enough to contemplate the sleeping in 40 year old sleeping bags stored permanently underground; Or that bedtime consisted simply of turning out the light and setting the alarm to wake you into the same scene of absolute darkness 6-8 hours later.  But no, the film takes you into the pure grovelliness of cave exploration.  As Mick Hopkinson, early NZ “pot-holer” explains in his Manchurian accent:  “It’s a dirty, cold sport – with no heroes”.

Here’s a link:

Summit of Everest

Scott’s been to Everest in 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015 and now in 2017.  He’s seen his share of tragedy – the awful icefall collapse that killed 16 Sherpas in 2014 and the terrible earthquake in 2015.  After summiting for the first time in 2010, he came close in 2013 (giving up his bid to provide his client with extra oxygen) and now in 2017, he got to see the top of the planet again.

It was exactly a week ago – Saturday May 27 Nepal time that the Pender team stepped to the top.  It was a long trip – the weather was capricious this year and there were limited summit days.  May 27 was the final day of the brief Everest season.

Paul, Mike (guide), Scott and six Sherpas:   Sange Dorjee, Nima Nuru, Purba Choter (Ang Jangbu), Mingmar Tenji, Passang Wongchu and Pemba Chote, left Camp 4 at the South Col at 8pm on the 26th for an all-nighter to the top.  They made fairly good progress on a mostly quiet climbing day and arrived at the summit at dawn on the 27th.  Flurries of snow swirled – When I get the picture up, you’ll see that Scottie’s eye lashes look frosty.  It’s not cozy.

We were thrilled to hear they had finally made the top.  From there, Scott can come home.  It really feels like downhill.  No time was lost and Scott skipped home in 5 days.  They helicoptered to Kathmandu from Basecamp – hence the quick return. We are happy to have him back after two months and 4 days!


Summit bid this week

Scott is currently at Camp 2 fending off what appears to be flu.  He and Paul and guide, Mike went down to Namche Bazaar for 5 days to rest but Scott seems to have caught a bug there.  With great difficulty no doubt, the bug is being transported upon high.  Not fun or easy at 6500 metres.  The AC doc is keeping tabs on him and he’s taking everything to beat it back.

The main AC team including our good friend Suze Kelly, summited yesterday. Yay for Suze!  Scott and team are looking for a summit bid this coming Thursday or Friday (May 25-26).  Fingers crossed.  Send healing and easy breathing vibes Scott’s way….

2nd round to altitude

Thanks for following Scott’s blog.  They did their first acclimatization round and tagged the bottom of the Lhotse face (6850m) then returned to EBC after 6 days up high.  Scott tweaked his knee on the way back down but it’s all taped up and has continued to improve since being back at base camp.  After that first round of acclimatizing, it’s important to return to recuperate.  Many have coughs and cold which really play havoc on the breathing up high.

The Pender team (Scott’s) set off at 1am Nepal time on the 28th to head back up for the second round of acclimatizing.  They’ll be hoping to get to camp 3 on the Lhotse face and will spend several nights at camp 2.  Then they’ll return to rest up and wait for the weather for their summit bid.  The key factor is letting the jet stream winds die down.  This happens only for the first two weeks of May usually.  The team is hoping for a May 12 summit bid.

In all AC posts and all conversations with Scottie, Blizzard the dog is a key feature.  He or she followed the team up to EBC and s/he’s followed them way up into the Icefall.  The entire team is besotted and Suze (AC manager) wants to take the dog home apparently.  The team next door is trying to steal Blizzard.  The latest is that Blizzard has fleas so they are trying to get a flea collar brought from Kathmandu.  Dogs in Nepal are not usually pets.  This is a feral opportunist canine!  But a most beloved one.  She did a runner for one night and the crew were devastated.  Obviously she missed her dinner so is now back.

Stay tuned for updates on the adventures of the high alpine dog and her followers.

Here’s a pic copied from the AC dispatch.  Classic – Scott is holding Blizzard’s paw.  He’s a dog lover from way back….