A huge perk of this industry, combined with been based down here in Raglan, means we get to meet some rad people from all over the show. Designers, brand reps and ambassadors, photographers and general good humans up to cool shit. The idea has been floating around for a while to offer a little insight into who we have met along the way and what they get up too and turn it all into a regular feature on the blog. So to kick it all off, as the first 'Friend of Fallenfront' feature, we have Mitch from Epic Little Missions...
We were first introduced to Epic Little Missions/Mitch after a mutual friend kept reporting back to us about all these epics walks they were going on every weekend with their flatmate. We wanted to know more... The idea behind Epic Little Missions comes from knowing how lucky we are to live in New Zealand, easily getting to see the beauty of our natural landscape with beaches on both sides of the islands, wonderful mountain ranges to explore and bush clad landscapes in between. In spite of this some people still don’t get too see all the natural wonder, be it because they don’t know where to find it or haven’t thought to look for it. This is where Epic Little Missions comes in. The main goal is to create an awareness and spread the word about the rad walks, tramps and hikes around the Auckland area and take the guess work out of it all with advice, directions and time frames, so you don't venture off and end up walking for hours with one bottle of water and a bag of scroggin.
Safe to say, we now have a bucket list of walks that we are keen to get amongst next time we are up in the AK area. We fired Mitch through some quick questions to get some deeper insight into ELM, his day-to-day life and what inspires him...
Name & Age. Mitch Smyth. 27.
I’m from a place we call Taradise in Hawkes Bay, it’s a little town between Napier and Hastings but have spent my last few years working in Wellington and studying in Dunedin. I live in Auckland now. I’ve seen a little bit of our country and have been able to indulge in a lot of our beautiful mountains and beaches through Surfing and Snowboarding.
Kitekite Falls Waitakere
My current job is pretty cool. I’m a content creator at FUSE, which is a Social Media and PR/Activations agency here in Auckland. I basically come up with ideas for brands on social media and then bring those idea to life.
How and why did you start ELM.
I started ELM last year, when I had a break between studying and working. Noticing that all these epic walks around Auckland weren’t well represented online, I used my free time to try and remedy that. After a rigorous brainstorming session with my buddy Scotty we pinpointed Epic Little Missions as the name for the project, mainly because we were asking ourselves, “what do we want out if it” and the answer was, “we want to go on epic little missions” so it sort of came naturally. Since starting the project and getting a few people keen to really get out there and explore, the mission has expanded to motivate as many Aucklanders as we can to go and check out what we have in our backyard.
ELM workspace. It’s the kitchen table in my flat. Haha.
Best walk to date…. Why.
My favourite walk to date is the Mokoroa Falls Track. The walk itself is pretty short but the basin where the falls are is truly magical. I went with a buddy of mine Riley and we were just blown away! It was a super hot day so I got under the falls for the best shower ever! I encourage everyone to hit it up, it’s epic.
Mokoroa Falls Waitakere
I really want to do the Milford sound, I did a scenic flight over it a few years ago and it was beautiful, Queen Charlotte Track is also on the list. Internationally the dream is to hike through Yosemite Park and the Canadian Rockies.
Essentials to take on walks.
Mostly my walks are day trips so you only need decent shoes (I mostly walk in vans). A back pack filled with a towel, food, lots of water and a light jacket just in case.
Hidden gems you’ve found on your adventures.
I just visited a cool little lookout spot called McElwain lookout. It has amazing views over Piha and Anawhata, it’s a full on platform that puts you above the canopy.
Inspiration. Polers adventures are a massive inspiration, their missions are so rad.
Instagram accounts you follow.
Local. Photography: @inthedrink @scottysinton @whaleslider & art: @birdryanbird @julietburtonillustration @thejellyologist
International. Photography: @rodtrvn @chrisburkard & art: @jamiebrownart @christianlanouette
I like animated kids movies like Wreck-It Ralph and Ratatouille, I don’t know why. I also like westerns, so enjoyed the new Slow west movie and Django.
Give us something to watch. Click here.
Magazines. Smith Journal.
Duder Regional Park
Typical clothing attire. ‘Your uniform’.
I’m pretty relaxed, normally in Vans, Jeans and a hoodie, I like opshops too so I have a whole bunch of old woolen jerseys and jackets on my clothes rack too, so i mix a bot of old and new i guess.
Brands you're wearing. Vans, Poler and some AS colour essentials are my go-to’s.
Bar. Portland Public House
Food. Ceremony in Grafton - Epic breakfast burgers
Gigs. Neck of the Woods is cool on a good night.
Describe your ideal day.
Wake up to the sound of fun waves, have bacon for breakfast, surf, hangout under a tree, spot a Kereru, play guitar and drink beers around a bonfire.
Hunua Regional Park
For full write ups, info and locations of all the mission, head over to Epic Little Missions website