The Banff Centre Mountain Film Festival World Tour is coming to Bozeman on January 13-14 at the Willson Auditorium. From over 400 films submitted to the festival, a selection of eight unique films will be shown on Friday evening, Saturday afternoon, and Saturday evening (for a total of 24 films). With selections spanning the gamut from calls for conservation, to breaking cultural norms in the outdoors, to pure pursuits of passion, this year's festival will move your perspective on outdoor recreation.
The festival sent us a pre-screener of the Saturday matinée selection, which will start at 1pm. I was lucky enough to view these films from the comfort of my own sofa, but I attest that the reel is worth a trip downtown this January—in fact, the theater setting will surely bring an energy that can't be matched at home. Here's a rundown on the films for Saturday afternoon; descriptions for Friday and Saturday evenings can be found here.
It's no Bridger Bowl, but Alta sure is a fun mountain to ski. Follow a crew of rowdy skiers through the crest of Little Cottonwood Canyon's snowy playground, featuring Bozeman's own Vasu Sojitra.
A segment from the Reel Rock 16 tour, Bridge Boys follows crack-climbing addicts Tom Randall and Pete Whittaker on a journey to find the longest, most difficult roof cracks in the world. Turns out, the prize line is on the underside of a freeway bridge, and despite the lack of a picturesque mountain backdrop, the climbing effort is nothing short of impressive.
A well-produced mountain-bike film needs no context. We can only presume that this one is set in western Canada based on the dramatic glacial landscapes and massive jump lines weaving through towering forests. In any case, the film's riding and editing are masterful.
Before They Fall
With old-growth forests covering only 2% of their original range in western British Columbia, it's time to put our foot down and protect what's left from clear-cut logging. Follow a group of conservationists, scientists, First Nations people, and storytellers in their effort to protect one of the last old-growth stands on Vancouver Island.
A Baffin Vacation
Baffin Island is one of Earth's final frontiers. Follow two amateur climbers who turn out to be expert paddlers on their journey from surmounting small summits to running raging rivers. Just be prepared for some sweaty palms.
In Bozeman, we're lucky to have easy access to the outdoors. Unfortunately, that's not the case for most people living in America. Follow a group of young men from Queens on an eye-opening journey along the Appalachian Trail.
If you came for a mountain film, this is it. A team of Polish ski mountaineers takes on one of the world's loftiest objectives: a descent of 20,000-foot Laila Peak in Pakistan's Karakorum Range.
North Shore Betty
On the heels of a career as a windsurfing pioneer on British Columbia's coastal waters, Betty Birrell picked up mountain biking at age 45 and found her new calling. The film is a heartwarming look at a mother-son bond that is forged along technical trails beneath a lush canopy of trees.
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