December 6, 2010

Danny MacAskill, Way Back Home

Way Back Home is the incredible new riding clip from Danny MacAskill, it follows him on a journey from Edinburgh back to his hometown Dunvegan, in the Isle of Skye.

I know this made the rounds, and here it made it as far as the comments, but over Thanksgiving we watched it three times.

I feel the same way when I watch this as I felt when I watched the Andy Goldsworthy documentary.


  1. Cindy Scroggins on December 6th, 2010 at 10:50 am

    Wow, I’d forgotten about this. Daryl and I need to see it together. Thank you.

  2. Deron Bauman on December 6th, 2010 at 10:53 am

    It is indescribable.

  3. Jeremy Huggins on December 6th, 2010 at 10:55 am

    This isn’t as epic, but it features one of my favorite songs, “Welcome Home, Son,” from one of my favorite bands, Radical Face, and that makes all the difference.

  4. Phil Bebbington on December 6th, 2010 at 11:00 am

    A combination of how, wow and inadequacy. Add to that all my body hair (of which there is little) standing on end and a feeling of joy.

    Thank you, Deron.

  5. Daryl Scroggins on December 6th, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Damn. This is just amazing. It’s like he was born with wheels instead of feet. I’d like to see him making his way through a New Orleans cemetery. I don’t think the occupants would be offended at all, given the beauty of it.

  6. Deron Bauman on December 6th, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    My dad said it was like he was breaking physics. I said it was like he was physics.

  7. Michael Smith on December 6th, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    I keep thinking about his vision. Sure, he does shit that seems impossible, but how does he even see it? Everything must look different to him.

  8. Phil Bebbington on December 6th, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Is this kind of stuff likely to impress girls? It impresses me. I can be a bit of a girl!

    It is like he has additional eyes and no fear.

  9. Sheila Ryan on December 6th, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    This girl is impressed.

    Reminds me of awe-inspiring dance performances I’ve witnessed — when dancers levitate.

  10. Carole Corlew on December 6th, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    Michael, is it because he doesn’t need to “see” maybe? He just feels? A tennis instructor showed me a test using tennis balls. He had kids to the side, one at a time, and he threw balls in front of them and said catch the ball. Only one kid was able to catch a ball while in motion and did it consistently. He said the kid was one in 100. You can’t teach it. The kid could predict while he was in motion where the ball would go, but of course the kid couldn’t explain how it was done. His body just knew and did it.

    Several years ago, I saw in Wired Magazine, I think, a story about a place in New Zealand that is studying this kind of thing and more. Trying to figure how whether these inborn talents and skills can be broken down and taught. But I haven’t been able to find the article since. I am certain I did not dream it, though.

  11. Sheila Ryan on December 6th, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    I know someone who has that ability you describe, Carole. It seems so uncanny to me.

    It is hard for me to imagine it can be taught — at least not at its higher levels.

  12. Jeremy Huggins on December 6th, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Oops, left out the link ( for my comment above.

  13. Carole Corlew on December 6th, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    Shelia, at the time I thought he meant it couldn’t be taught to little kids. Then I ran across that story several years later which seemed to say that certain almost spooky skills (like the rider displays I would think) can’t be taught. And that’s why they were being studied. I think it said they were specifically studying tennis players.

    I’ll look for that story now and then, then I’ll forget about it. It was an old copy of Wired at the gym so I don’t even know what year. At least four years ago.

  14. Sheila Ryan on December 6th, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    Carole, I wonder if in part the gift has to do with vision not in the sense of the optical nerve but the visual cortex and how in some people’s brains the different areas of the visual cortex operate, eh, differently.

    Oh, and I don’t know anyone who can do what MacAskill does! Just talking about that eerie ability to react almost before something has happened or to see — and react — when not looking directly at the site of action. The apparent absence of delay or need to “keep your eye on the ball” in the sense that most of us understand and operate

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  16. Carole Corlew on December 6th, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    I don’t know, Shelia. That’s way beyond me. I have to track down that article.