Friday Nov 30, 2012

European Outdoor Film Tour - 2012/13

This last week has seen European Outdoor Film Tour's first steps from mainland Europe into the unknown. Although firmly established in Europe, screening in over 200 locations, it was the first stop of four in the UK and extreme.com went along to the Royal Geographic Society as they hosted their first event in the UK to a sell-out crowd.

The E.O.F.T. was founded back at the beginning of the millenium by Joachim Hellinger and Thomas Witt. There aim was simple:

"To showcase the world's most exciting outdoors sport films and adventure documentaries. We're really excited to be able to extend the tour to West Switzerland. Switzerland has a rich heritage of adventurers, explorers and mountaineers. There's a vibrant adventure sports scene at every level from weekend warriors enjoying the great outdoors to top class athletes pushing the boundaries of adventure sports." 

At two hours long, showing 9 different films, the idea was to give you a taste of the best outdoor action sport films around and celebrate the great outdoors and the film community that dedicate so much of their lives to their passion.

With the likes of Base-Jumping, Highlining, kayaking, free climbing and mountain biking you can be sure it was a great mix of outdoor sports. Here's just a few of our highlights from the evening.

Birdmen documented the progression of wingsuit base-jumping over the last few years. If you are afraid of heights watching this, (plus many of the other features from the evening) especially on the big screen, was enough to make your stomach turn. These guys are calculated, but were jumping quite literally into the unknown.

Most of you have probably at some point in time planned a crazy road trip with your best mate. How many of you have followed up on it? These two did and it follows two relatively naive Aussies on their quest to become the first people to cross the sixth largest island in the world, Victoria Island. What they lack in planning they make up in with camaraderie, determination and always come up with practical and ingenious solutions to their problems. This got the most laughs of the night by far and was a great light hearted documentary on their journey.

For many years Austrian David Lama has dominated the field of international climbing. In July 2012 he set out with climbing partner Peter Ortner to face the Nameless Tower/Trango Tower, part of the Trango Towers in the Karakoram mountain range, in a remote region of Pakistan. David even made a guest appearance during the evening and answered a couple of questions.

David Lama taking to the stage.

This next guy couldn't be any further removed from David Lama. Sure he's as talented, albeit in a different way and yes this next guy can climb, but whilst David is calculated Andy is not. He goes on instinct and curiosity and with a name like Sketchy Andy you start to see where we're going with this. Base Jumping and high-lining without a leash are both lethal in their own right, but combined it's almost suicidal. I remember one quote from his friend as: "Self-preservation kind of goes out of the window with Andy." Yet he's somehow still alive to tell the tale. This one is not to be missed.

Another favourite had to be Freeride Entertainments latest project, Where The Trail Ends. Although cinematic budgets are something that has been around in some action sport industries for a little while now it is not something so common in mountain biking. This helped broadcast the sport to a much broader audience and really open up the possibilites of what is rideable in this world. Where The Trail Ends took cycling to places where the bike and this kind of riding had never set foot before.

So that's it until next year in the UK. The response from the UK shores has been excellent, they sold out in London and Bristol and nearly maxed Manchester and Glasgow, not bad for E.O.F.T first trip! They are already planning to come back next year with more explosive E.O.F.T films, but if you can't wait they still have screenings located around Europe. Simply check out their website and see which country and city you can still join in on the action.

Channels: Extreme.com, Kayak, Mountain Bike, Outdoor, Snowboard

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