November is my least favorite month. Cold and grey with shorter and shorter days, it seems to hang on forever before we get to Thanksgiving. But here in Spokane, there is one more good thing about this month. The weekend before turkey day, The Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour comes to town. We’re extra lucky, because the festival screens for three days and so we usually get a chance to see all of the movies that made it on to the tour.
Yesterday, I went to the Bing Crosby Theater for opening night. It was my third time at the festival and every year there are more people than last year. This year is the first where all three nights were sold out.
Most of the movies have some sort of outdoor theme, but the focus of each film are vastly different and as diverse as the filmmakers who come from all over the world to participate and compete in the festival. Last night, I watched a kayaker almost getting killed in New Zealand, a 92 or maybe 96-year-old (he can’t remember) talk about his life as an outdoor guide in southern Colorado, wildlife biologists discussing the impact of wildlife highway over and under passes around Banff, the most famous ultimate marathoner finishing five races on five continents, a small town in New Zealand lamenting the impact of global warming on outdoor curling, two young English blokes climbing Century Crack—the hardest off width in the world—and thereby pissing off a bunch of American climbers, and several more great films.
Plus there was this: