The mind boggled as I watched snowboarders weaving death-defying off-piste routes in stunning Alaskan mountains; base jumpers actually flying like birds (in bird suits!) at breakneck speeds and so close to mountains that one tiny error of judgment would have resulted in instant death; mountain bikers carving out new and breathtaking trails in China’s extremely hot Gobi desert; and a slack roper walking his 2in line without safety harness many hundreds of feet above the ground.
My heart was also filled with the charming results of a Mont Blanc summit bid – and concert – by a double bass player, guitarist and singer from France and then awed by a wave playing kayaker, who was happy to dice with fire.
These was just some of the myriad emotions experienced during more than two hours of adventure film footage at the European Outdoor Film Tour. On November 26, the tour – sponsored by Mammut and Gore-Tex – came to Scotland for the first time and the audience at Glasgow Film Theatre ooh and ahhed their way through nine short films.
The film line-up was packed with extreme adventure and bonkers ideas. The most extreme was arguably Conrad Anker’s third bid to summit the notoriously difficult and technical 9000m granite wall of Shark’s Fin on the peak of Meru in Central India. His three man team almost fell apart due to a sking accident. And the most bonkers film for me was two seeming ordinary Australian guys and their attempts to walk Victoria Island in the far Northern part of Canada. Seeing really is believing on this adventure film tour.
Tonight, the tour will play its last event in the UK – in London – before heading to Germany, France and Switzerland. If you didn’t catch it this year, look out for dates next year.