Boone, NC Weather
Partly Cloudy
7-Day Forecast

From Banff to Boone

Article Published: Mar. 29, 2012 | Modified: Apr. 1, 2012
From Banff to Boone

‘Reel Rock: Origins — Obe & Ashima’ is edpected to play Friday at the Banff World Tour in Boone.
Photo from ‘Reel Rock: Origins — Obe & Ashima

Banff and Boone share something in common.

Apart from the obvious “They both start with ‘B,’” the two townships – nearly a country apart – share an inherent love for the outdoors, one that transcends borders, passports and awkward airport shakedowns.

For 16 years, the Banff Centre in Banff, Alberta, Canada, has brought the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour to Appalachian State University, which now has the reputation of one of its largest screenings in North America – and for good reason.

It returns to Boone March 30 to 31, and the films – all focused on the outdoors, environment and adventure from filmmakers who span the globe – are the Banff Centre’s pick of the litter, and often pack ASU’s Farthing Auditorium to capacity.

“Boone has to be one of the most appreciative and enthusiastic audiences that we play to on the tour,” said Seana Strain, Banff world tour coordinator. “Our staff love coming to Boone. The array of themes in the films seems to speak to this community. They enjoy a wide range of film subjects, from adrenaline sports to cultural journeys. The diversity of interests makes Boone a wonderful tour stop.”

Tickets often sell out fast, and this year was no exception, making it imperative that the festival include events outside of Farthing in which non-ticketholders can participate, such as filmmaking and climbing workshops led by Banff movie stars.

“Tickets have been sold out since about the first of March,” said Rich Campbell, director of ASU Outdoor Programs, which hosts the tour’s stop in Boone. “It’s by far the earliest that we’ve sold out, so that’s a good problem, but a problem. I wish we had more capacity.”

Campbell thinks the films’ new high-definition presentation might have something to do with it. “It’s definitely shaping up to be one of the biggest years we’ve had,” he said.

As for the stars, this year’s festival hosts two guests: filmmaker Anson Fogel, whose award-winning films, “Cold” and “Chasing Water,” will be screened at Friday’s event, and adventurer/athlete Will Gadd, who’s featured in Saturday’s “Reel Rock: Ice Revolutions.”

Fogel will speak Friday, March 30, during the festival, and Gadd will speak Saturday, March 31. But naturally, there’s more.

On Friday, Fogel will host a filmmaking workshop at ASU’s Catherine Harper Hall, Room 17, located on Rivers Street, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Both sessions are free and open to the public.

On Saturday, Gadd will host a number of clinics in conjunction with the tour, including a rock-climbing workshop at the ASU recreation center from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., as well as an ice-climbing workshop at Footsloggers in downtown Boone from 2 to 4 p.m. Both are open to the public and free to attend.

“We actually have some ice panels that simulate ice, and we’ve put them on (Footsloggers’) climbing wall if people want to try ice-climbing,” Campbell said.

“We’ll literally be ice-climbing on a wall in downtown Boone on Saturday.”

As for the film festival itself, Friday’s and Saturday’s screenings start at 7:30 p.m., although doors open at 6:30 p.m., with live music from the New River Boys (Friday) and Henhouse Thieves (Saturday) leading up to show time.

“We’re encouraging people to get there early, check out the vendors, listen to some good music, and then we’ll start the films at 7:30 sharp each night,” Campbell said.

During the festival, he added, winners of the Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition and the A4 (Appalachian Adventure Achievement Award) will be officially announced.
The films should conclude around 10:15 p.m.

And then there’s the after-party, to which all are invited, at Boone Saloon, following the films’ 10:15 p.m. conclusion on both Friday and Saturday nights.

“Basically, Boone Saloon is serving as the after-party spot to go,” Campbell said. “I don’t think they’re having music on either of those nights, so we’re encouraging people to come and talk bout the films.”

Campbell expects Fogel to attend the after-party Friday and Gadd on Saturday. There will be a cover charge of $5 for those who don’t have their Banff ticket stub.

Put simply, Banff is more than just a weekend at the movies.

“I love that this event started as a local gathering in a small mountain town,” Strain said, “and now travels the world, visiting about 350 locations, about 245,000 people, approximately 32 countries, seven continents. It’s a thrill to look at our Facebook page and see the positive reactions coming from all corners of the world.”

She can likely expect some more this weekend.

For more information on the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, visit and

The Lineup
(subject to change)


“All.I.Can: The Short Cut”

Best Feature-Length Mountain Film, sponsored by town of Banff
Canada, 2011, 11 minutes
Directed by: Dave Mossop, Eric Crossland
Produced by: Eric Crosland, Malcolm Sangster

Stunning time-lapse sequences, creative visuals, great skiers and deep powder are highlights of this excerpt from the award-winning feature film that looks at snow sports and the environment.

“Chasing Water”

Presented in person by Anson Fogel
Best Short Mountain Film, sponsored by The North Face
USA, 2011, 18 minutes
Directed by: Peter McBride
Produced by: Anson Fogel

Pete McBride grew up on a ranch in western Colorado, a child of the Colorado River. After a life spent visiting other countries to tell stories as a National Geographic photojournalist, in 2008 McBride decided to follow the water from his family’s ranch to see where it ends up. This is the story of McBride’s journey, and a story about the lifeblood of the American West.

“On the Trail of Genghis Khan: The Last Frontier”

People’s Choice Award – “On the Trail of Genghis Khan”
(series), sponsored by V.I.O.
Australia, 2011, 46 minutes
Directed by: Tim Cope
Produced by: Richard Dennison

On an epic journey of truly historic proportions, Australian Tim Cope, his band of horses and his dog Tigon travel overland 10,000 km from Mongolia to Hungary, following the footsteps of legendary warrior and nomad Genghis Khan. Cope visits distant parts of the world rarely seen, places on the cusp of modernity, yet proud of nomadic traditions. “The Last Frontier” captures the culmination of his stunning three-year journey, the crossing of the Carpathian Mountains.

“Reel Rock: Origins — Obe & Ashima”

USA, 2011, 23 minutes
Directed and produced by: Josh Lowell

There’s a 9-year-old girl from New York City taking the bouldering world by storm, and her name is Ashima Shiraishi. Guided by her coach and former bouldering star Obe Carrion, this tiny master is crushing competitions and raising the bar for her peers. A trip to the bouldering mecca of Hueco Tanks provides a glimpse of the past for Carrion and the start of amazing new adventures for Shiraishi.

“Seasons: Winter”

USA, 2011, 4 minutes
Directed and produced by: Skip Armstrong

Brian Ward discovers an unexpected and newfound love for water, in its frozen and expanded form.

“Cold” (presented in person by Anson Fogel)

Presented in person by Anson Fogel
Grand Prize – sponsored by Mountain Equipment Co-op
Best Film – climbing, sponsored by Alpine Club of Canada
Audio Post-production scholarship, provided by The Banff Centre
USA, 2011, 19 minutes
Directed and produced by: Anson Fogel

Experience Gasherbrum II in the middle of a deep, dark winter as seen from the raw, honest perspective of alpinist Cory Richard’s camera. This film deftly captures the interwoven roles of pain, fear and doubt — and reveals a harrowing descent that amplifies their isolation and exposure.


Canada, 2011, 8 minutes
Directed and produced by: Adam Bailey

One man’s quest to revolutionize the world of animal avalanche rescue.


“Towers of the Ennedi”

USA, 2011, 14 minutes
Directed and produced by: Renan Ozturk

The Ennedi Desert of Chad is a hot, sand-scoured and unfriendly place. But from its vast belly rise clusters of breathtakingly lovely spires, towers and rock formations. Veteran climber Mark Synnott — known more for his far-flung adventures than his technical accomplishments — brings young climbing stars Alex Honnold and James Pearson to the Ennedi to explore its untouched landscapes.

“Reel Rock: Ice Revolution”

Presented in person by Will Gadd
USA, 2011, 13 minutes
Directed and produced by: Josh Lowell

A revolution is taking place, led by Canadian maniac Will Gadd. After 30 years of ice climbing, Gadd has finally realized his dream of climbing radically overhanging, heinously difficult ice at British Columbia’s spectacular Helmcken Falls. Gadd and Tim Emmett dodge exploding icicle bombs and ascend the hardest pure ice climb in the world.

“The Trail Collector”

Switzerland, 2010, 5 minutes
Directed and produced by: Tom Malecha

People collect all kinds of things: stamps, coins, art — this is a collection of trails.


Best Film — Exploration and Adventure, sponsored by Nemo
USA, 2011, 42 minutes
Directed and produced by: Ben Stookesbury
“Kadoma” is the nickname for Hendri Coetzee, a legendary South African kayaker who is known for exploring some of Africa’s wildest rivers. In December 2010, American pro kayakers Chris Korbulic and Ben Stookesbury followed Coetzee into the Democratic Republic of Congo for a first descent of the dangerous Lukuga River. Seven weeks into the expedition, tragedy struck.


“Seasons: Fall”

USA, 2010, 4 minutes
Directed and produced by: Skip Armstrong

Deep canyons with steep, spring-fed creeks provide Kate Wagner with a soul-session in this paddling paradise.

“Hanuman Airlines”

USA, 2011, 26 minutes
Directed by: Hamilton Pevec
Produced by: Kimberly Phinney, David Arrufat, Wildes Antoninoli

Two Nepali adventurers channel the Hindu God of Wind on their mission to launch a paraglider from Mount Everest’s summit and travel to an ocean they have never seen.

“On Assignment: Jimmy Chin”

USA, 2010, 6 minutes
Directed and produced by: Renan Ozturk

A brief portrait of a passionate athlete who has melded climbing and photography. Jimmy Chin believes that “the most honest photos happen when both the subject and the photographer are just in the moment, and the rest of the world has just fallen away.”

“The Freedom Chair”

Best Film — Mountain Sports, sponsored by Live Out There
Canada, 2011, 15 minutes
Directed and produced by: Mike Douglas

Josh Dueck was an aspiring skier and coach until a ski accident in 2004 changed his life. Despite his comeback and success in the world of competitive sit-skiing, he wasn’t content. Dueck’s dream is to tackle the backcountry and the steepest and wildest mountains in the world — and with his infectious outlook, he may just catch his dream.

Facebook Fans
Home » Community Events » From Banff to Boone
Local Business Marketplace

Find more businesses on

Attorneys · Automotive · Health Care
Home & Garden · Hotels & Lodging Restaurants
Retail · Recreation · Real Estate & Rentals · Services

Banner Elk My Hometown
Boone My Hometown
ASU Sports