Year of Production: 2016
Duration: 10 x 60 min
La Grande traversée follows the adventure of six men and four women, between 23 and 44 years of age, as they take on a colossal challenge: crossing the Atlantic on board L'Espérance, a three-masted tall ship, in the same conditions 17th century sailors experienced. They will be clothed, housed, and fed as people were in the era of New France, and subjected to the same difficult limits of hygiene and promiscuity.
Throughout their journey, initially estimated at 45 days, the crew will not only live like settlers as their ancestors did, but they’ll also work like sailors did way back then, swabbing the decks, tarring the rigging, climbing up the stays, pulling the ropes to orient, raise, or lower the sails. And last, but not least, as an additional challenge, they must determine their position at sea using navigation instruments from hundreds of years ago.
They will be confronted with the laws of life at sea during their journey, where the priority is no longer given to the individual, as in our world today, but to the ship, because without it no one will ever reach a safe harbour.
Their quest: to make a great journey back in time, in the footsteps of their ancestors, between La Rochelle, France and Quebec, New France. Their adventure is much more than just a voyage of 5,400 km between two ports, it’s a deep exploration of themselves, and discovering their strengths and their limits.