Winter Wildlands Alliance Presents: The 17th Annual Backcountry Film Festival

We believe in the power of humans and their spirit. Our mission is to manifest that power in communities through stories of activists, adventurers, and the outdoors to inspire and activate.

The Backcountry Film Festival is a year-round, community program presented by Winter Wildlands Alliance that brings messages relevant to WWA’s mission and on-going stewardship, policy and advocacy initiatives throughout every season. A collage of human-powered stories and backcountry-inspired experiences, BCFF brings wild conversations and inspires action to communities that celebrate the present while looking towards the future.

The 17th Annual Backcountry Film Festival will be screening documentaries and ski movies about athletic pursuit in the mountains, artistic vision, friendship, and how the snowsports community is adapting to a changing environment.

Film Descriptions

ASCEND:  Reframing Disability in the Outdoors

By Faith E. Briggs and TopTop Studio

Vasu is not seeking to inspire you to feel good. His trauma doesn’t exist solely to benefit the education of others. He is seeking to inspire you to move mountains. To take action. Skiing is the method, but the real mountains are the “isms” that fail to support Disabled communities, communities of color and so many others for whom access has not been a right. Through his personal journey and approaching a new objective, the famed line “The Skillet” on Mt. Moran, and through over 40,000 “dips to Nirvana,” we hear his truth and begin to comprehend what it might look like to be in solidarity.

Finding Gulo: The Movement to Save the Wolverine

By The Wilder Studio & Wild Confluence

“Finding Gulo” follows a backcountry ski guide & field biologist who set out to document an elusive population of wolverines. This short film celebrates the power of citizen science to protect endangered wildlife in the face of climate change.

PERSPECTIVE – Fred Campbell

By Sherpas Cinema

When you’re an athlete, your sport defines you. TNF team athlete Fred Campbell was a football player. He lived and breathed the gridiron grind until a career-ending injury opened a door into the world of climbing.

A Tribute to a Glacier

By Thaïs Despont

A musical immersion in the wonderful landscapes of the Athabasca Glacier in Jasper National Park, seen through an indigenous lens.

Alone Beneath the Northern Lights

By Valentin Boitel-Denyset

A winter beyond the Arctic Circle, I open the door of a wooden hut lost in the heart of the white landscapes, far from any civilization. The northern lights blaze the skies, and the views are incredibly beautiful. I take care to write down my ideas, my sensations, and to record my life as a hermit. This place is propitious to wonder, to poetry, to reason…

Denizens of the Steep

By Orijin Media

As backcountry skiing grows in popularity—and more people are headed into the wilderness than ever before—we must become aware of our environment, understand our impact and take measures to recreate responsibly. Denizens of the Steep explores the impact of backcountry recreation on migratory sheep, with professional ski mountaineer/guide Kim Havell and others discussing the importance of protecting and conserving the wild places in which we roam.

Eastside Story

By Mountain Grown Media

This is the story of two seasoned backcountry skiers, mountain guides Lel Tone and Brennan Lagasse who have traveled the world and experienced some of the harshest and wildest snow-covered places. But here, these two Lake Tahoe-based skiers venture deep into their own backyard—the vast and rugged east side of California’s Sierra Nevada mountains to learn about the land and love the way they live.

Finding Balance

By Santino Martirano

Through life we dabble, we try new things, and we test the waters by sticking a toe in. But, every so often something special happens and we can’t help but to dive deep.

Lot’zza Mia

By Mad Trees

A film on skiing and eating pizza – a lot of pizza, in the lot. Caitlin Mitchell and Griffin Dunne embark on an epic search for cheese when really it’s the journey that matters. L’epica saga di un’odissea della pizza.


By Eclectic Brew Productions

Encaustic artist and outdoor adventurer, Bridgette Meinhold lives among the Wasatch Mountains in Utah. Her paintings reflect the aspen groves and peaks that surround her. On a frigid March morning, just before her birthday, Meinhold turns her muse into her canvas to create a snow labyrinth.

Snow Rangers

By Wool Hat Creative

Snow Rangers is a short film that follows the Colorado Mountain Club’s backcountry program that is helping to manage expanding winter recreation in southwest Colorado.

Off-Piste Opus

By Luke Nelson

A raw edit of the sounds of the backcountry.

The Approach

By Mad Trees

An action-driven ski and snowboard film elevating people of color, women and adaptive athletes.

Wild Ice

By Bear Witness Media

In far northern Minnesota, roughly once every ten years, the early-season ice conditions set up just right for skating. The window to travel the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness via Nordic skates is brief, but these locals took advantage of beautiful weather and headed into the wilderness on perfect ice.

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