Taking place at the Carriageworks in Leeds the audience had to navigate a winter wonderland just to get to the venue. Ice slides, ice rink, dolomites café and glacier express ride all helped set the mood as we walked through Millenium Square!
Those who were lucky enough to be there saw a variety of films that showed how far humans are willing to push themselves to achieve goals and dreams previously unattainable!
Whether it was Jeremy Jones riding the world's steepest lines in Alsaka, or the 'Frontier' crew paddling down waterfalls in Iceland and Chile, there was something in the festival to inspire mountain enthusiasts of all different backgrounds!.
A mixture of short films and longer edits struck a good balance throughout the evening and we had a few favourites on the night and not all of them involved the white stuff. So here are our faves:
From a snowboarding point of view it was nice to see Jeremy Jones 'Further' getting more of the exposure it so rightly deserves.
Seeing the edit of 'Further' on a big screen really brought home the scale of what Jeremy Jones and his crew achieved when they went 'Further'. The Banff edit featured the crew's trip into 'Alaska' and how without outside assistance they hike and ride some of the most remote lines in the world. It was definitely a festival highlight for us, we just wished we could of seen the whole movie as well!
Snowboarding aside the film of the night in our eyes was 'Ndizotheka' Chichewan for "It is Possible" an inspiring documentary about a young Malawian man's pursuit of his bold dream to fly, by becoming his country's first paraglider pilot. Once he meets Canadian Paraglider Benjamin Jordan anything feels possible, the film confronts personal failure and vast differences in cultures. Seeing the two men go on this remarkable journey made for a truly emotional film with an ending which would warm even the coldest of hearts. Definitely worth a watch.
From an action point of view we also loved ‘Frontier’ a film that followed the world's best paddlers as they rode some of the fiercest waters of Mexico and Iceland, a terrible start saw the crew get their vehicle stuck in Iceland, followed by a trip to jail and only narrowly avoiding a $50,000 dollar fine. Not your average trip! Once things got underway there was some truly amazing footage of the riders descending massive waterfalls and leaving us wondering if they would come out at the other side! Thankfully they all did although bones were not always intact!
Our final pick was Dura Dura, This followed Chris Sharma the "king" of sport climbing for 15 years and created a mecca for hard routes near his home in Catalunya, Spain. He climbs against theup and coming Czech wunderkind, Adam Ondra, Both learn from one another and we see an age old battle of youth versus experience. Both work together but does anyone complete the face
All in all the night was a huge success and the festival seems to be really taking off with limited tickets and sold out signs going up for many of the remaining dates.
So if you have a love of the mountains and your in the UK you could do worse than check out one of the remaining dates!
The tour heads to Birmingham tonight for a sold out show. There are still tickets for other events so please check for your nearest show if you are interested in going, we can highly recommend it!!!