Mountainfilm on Tour to Screen in Flathead Valley

The Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation brings the annual adventure-packed film festival to two northwest Montana towns

By Micah Drew
Courtesy Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation

If pictures are worth 1,000 words, then the moving pictures featured in the Mountainfilm on Tour festival represent entire encyclopedias filled with adventure.

The Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation (BMWF) will host its annual film festival on March 21 at the O’Shaughnessy Center in Whitefish and March 22 at the Bigfork Center for the Performing Arts. The Mountainfilm on Tour will feature eight inspiring, adventure-packed documentary films from the acclaimed Mountainfilm Festival that will transport viewers to wild trout streams, wave-breaking shores, cliffside climbing routes and beyond.

“Mountainfilm is a bit different than a lot of other outdoor film festivals,” said Allison Siems, BMWF Operations Director. “Yes, there are some epic adventures and sufferfests – but mostly, these films are about people trying to make their corner of the world a better place.”

The BMWF has been hosting Mountainfilm on Tour since 2007 as a fundraiser for its stewardship projects that take place in the 1.6-million-acre Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex each summer. The nonprofit organization hosts more than 40 volunteer adventure trips each year, putting nearly 400 volunteers to work maintaining trails, treating weeds and clearing trees.

“While the films don’t take place in the Bob, they all relate to our mission of connecting people with wild places,” explained Siems. “These films demonstrate how spending time and building community in the outdoors can truly change lives – something we’re lucky enough to witness every summer through our volunteers and internships.”

Courtesy Bob Marshall Wilderness Foundation

The Mountainfilm Festival was founded in 2000 as a way to bring adventure and outdoor advocacy to screens around the world. The annual festival takes place in Telluride each year over Memorial Day weekend, and organizations like BMWF can sponsor selections of current and best-loved films on tour.

The film lineup this year includes “Pass it On,” about three Squamish residents who integrate their love of climbing into the fabric of their community; “High Road,” detailing the bond between two Paralympic cyclists; “Paddle Tribal Waters,” celebrating the removal of the Klamath River dams; “4DWN,” which highlights the relationship between skateboarders and their environment; “ADVENNTURE,” a short film about shared ski experiences that span continents; “Reclaim Your Water,” about a BIPOC founded surf club; “Wading for Change,” detailing barriers minorities face with outdoor recreation; and “Beyond the Summit,” which follows the first person to ski the Seven Summits.

The doors for the events open 6 p.m., and the films start at 7 p.m.. Tickets for Mountainfilm on Tour in Whitefish and Bigfork are on sale now at www.bmwf.org/mountainfilm. Tickets will also be available the day of the event at the door, if the events are not sold out. The cost for tickets is $20 in advance, and $25 at the door. See the complete playlist at www.mountainfilm.org/tour/schedule.