ABC News’ Bob Woodruff and his son Mack are travelling to some of the world’s most “rogue” locations in their new Disney+ show, Rogue Trip.
Together, they’ll be visiting six of the most unexpected places and territories known mostly for conflict, but each possessing a unique power to surprise, amaze and inspire.
They’ll be heading to Colombia, Papua New Guinea, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Lebanon and Ukraine, and along the way viewers will see the father and son duo learn new things – not just about these countries, but each other too.
So, what exactly inspired them to “go rogue”?
Speaking to RadioTimes.com, Bob explained: “This was an idea that we came up with a couple of years ago. My dream was to go and see some of these countries that I reported about before during war times.
“I wanted to show people that these countries are not so simple, and they’re not just based on particular, horrible pieces of information, but that they had so many elements to them.”
During the trip, which took four months of 19-hour filming days, Bob and Mack learned to appreciate the hidden beauty within each country.
Speaking of his highlight of the trip, Mack explained: “There’s a moment in Pakistan in the Swamp Village, which was the most heavily occupied area of Pakistan by the Taliban in the early 2000, and we were there and the entire village seemed to descend on this park where we were and it was right by this flowing glacier river and they all wanted us to jump in.
“We decided to jump off this cement block, fully clothed and once we got out, the entire village was cheering for us. They were so happy for us, back in their homeland where they haven’t seen tourists since the queen of England was back there in the late 1900s. So that moment was incredibly powerful!”
But while there were many picturesque and happy moments, Bob admits this wasn’t just a holiday, as it put a massive strain on them, both mentally and physically.
“It wasn’t a vacation by any means. It might look like it sometimes, but it wasn’t all that easy all the time,” he said.
“I wouldn’t recommend people to go to any of these places not in shape at all. You’ve got to do something. I’d say it was more mental strength than anything because the days were so long – 18, sometimes 19 hours a day and that just starts wearing on you quite heavily.”
The long days also put a strain on their relationship, as Bob says they had to “break up” at some point.
“There was a time he [Mack] got tired of me. There’s a point where we’re stuck in a car together for a 12-hour drive and we stay in the same room. Eventually, we had to break up and get away from each other,” he said.
As well as this, the duo did have their fears, but they’re not what you might think, considering they were visiting some previously war torn countries.
For Bob, his fears were related to “food” and hygiene, as he explained: ” I think the fear was about getting some sort of cut that was going to get infected or eating some food.”
And there was only one moment where Mack admitted to being “scared” and it had nothing to do with “gun fire or kidnapping”.
“I was scared once,” he said. “Once when we were in the car in Pakistan in the middle of the night, and our drivers were going as fast as they could around the blind cliffs and passing other 18 wheelers. I’d never seen any driving like this before. They have no regard for safety of anyone else and it’s crazy. But in terms of other humans wanting to hurt us, I never felt that.”
Despite a few travel issues and their minor differences – one of which had a lot to do with Mack not being able to bring “all his shoes” on the trip – the journey certainly brought them closer together.
Speaking of the appreciation he developed for his father, Mack shared: “I think I learned that my dad can sleep in any place ever – on a plane, in the back of a bumpy Jeep, on a ship. And he’s got this tireless work effective that I’ve always known about and he’s colleagues have told me about, but I’d never experienced before.
“Being on the road with him for over four months, I saw it every day. It motivated me a tonne and I think I held myself to a much higher standard than I would have done if he wasn’t there.”
It’s clear the trip done them both a world of good, so much so, they’ve even spoke about the possibilities of another series.
When asked if they’d like to do another trip, both immediately replied yes – and they even know the “rogue” destinations they’d like to explore this time round.
During the planning stages of the trip, Bob originally wanted to visit Iran, Cuba and Algeria, however, they struggled to gain visas to these places, with the American journalist saying: “I think the government probably assumed that we were going to report on it as we usually do about war.”
Mack added: “The three my dad mentioned would be great. I think Sudan was also on the list and Mongolia.”
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