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The Old Spanish Trail is a documentary film about the historic trail, tracking the journey of Richard Waller, Otis Calef and Jim Clark on horseback 1200 miles from Los Angeles to Santa Fe. They rode the trail in two legs, fall of 2014 and summer of 2015. 

The Old Spanish Trail witnessed a brief but furious heyday between 1830 and 1848 as a trade route linking Santa Fe, New Mexico and Los Angeles, California. The riders run into problems staying true to trail because of highways and private land during their ride tracing the past. The film is a reminder to all of us to protect and preserve the natural landscape and it's trails. 

The film won an award in the category of Environmental and Mountain Culture Film at Mountain Film Festival 2019. 


Amazon review from Don Rose, 5 stars: Beautiful Adventure

Very interesting documentary that shows a portion of our history here in the West, with some beautiful scenery to boot.
It's humbling to reflect on what our pioneers endured in earlier days.

Facebook review from Paul Prickett, 5 out of 5: 

The Old Spanish Trail tells a very important story about the history of the American West. But it also reflects poignantly on the importance of the culture of the trail on modern community while also featuring the 'character' of contemporary American citizens. The passion and interest of people in helping each other while maintaining and preserving important environment and tradition. I was inspired by your work.

Amazon review from Robert Heffner, 5 stars: A must see for every adventure seeker.

Incredible journey by a great group of people. You feel as though you are a part of it with the genuine personalities in this documentary. If you enjoy western history and adventure, this is for you.

Benedicte Schoyen

Film maker and owner of 

Born To Play Productions.

Benedicte is from Oslo, Norway where she graduated with B.A. in dance at The State Ballet School. She has been a professional dancer for years,

choreographed several TV shows and directed live shows working both in Norway and United States. Besides running her own dance studio in Santa Monica for over 15 years, she taught ballet at 

UCLA Musical Theater 

Department 2001-2010. 

She completed her first documentary film Roadtrip Niger in 2016.

She lives in Los Angeles with her husband Ned Clark. 

Ned Clark



Ned is born and raised at a ranch in Ojai, California and has a B.A in music at California Institute of the Arts. After graduating he spent several years playing with different bands at clubs in Hollywood and the Los Angeles area. 

Ned has been involved in all of Born To Play Productions projects from the beginning. He composed music for "The Music Box DVD" and he was featured in the Roadtrip Niger film, as well as doing sound recording and voiceover.

Ned is also a business owner together with his dad Jim Clark and run a gas station for trucks in Santa Paula, California. 


Randy Ross, color correction and editing. 

Greg Hall, soundmix 

Hans Mills, graphic maps 


Marie Bergenholtz, still photography

Ned Clark, composer and voice over.


Otis Calef, voice over


Benedicte Schoyen, producer and director, photography and editing.  

Hilde Almeida joined the team in November 2017 as a production assistant to help promote the film. 

More information

The Old Spanish Trail Association. 


OSTA are dedicated to protecting, interpreting and promoting The Old Spanish National Historic Trail. Learn more about the history of the trail and their organization here! 

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