Take a vicarious adventure this week. Ranging from 21 minutes to full-length films, these free-to-stream videos will take you from the Pacific Crest Trail to Alaska, across Europe and all the way to Vietnam. Cycling, hiking, climbing, paddling and skiing will satisfy your adventure fix—no subscription (or effort) required.
1. From the Road
For the backcountry skier
This is a story you’ll want to root for. Adrenalin pulses through the veins of these iconic skiers, who are not without their tumbles and troubles. It’s an incredible story of human perseverance rife with bro-ship. Plus, the mountain scenery is stunning.
Watch it here: youtube.com/watch?v=-zKXIJnv8_4
For the aspiring climber
Free climbing is an epic sport most explorers only dream of trying. If you’re interested in extreme rock climbing, watch ROTPUNKT—German for “Redpoint.” This documentary dives into the journey of a young man with high expectations. (Note: some explicit language.)
Watch it here: youtube.com/watch?v=SbWvFjUIt5k
3. Blood Road
For the travelling cycler
On a quest to find her father, a professional athlete pushes her own limits. Tracing history along a perilous road where cultures once fought—and millions died—lends to a meaningful, emotional adventure flick.
Watch it here: redbull.com/int-en/films/blood-road
4. Children of the Columbia
For the big mountain skier
The beauty of the PNW is obvious along the Columbia River. This film traces the industrial history of the area in archival footage from 1920 to 1999 and showcases the interior’s vibrant mountain culture and snowy playground. I still have vertigo.
Watch it here: youtube.com/watch?v=Hd5COZ655cQ
For the white-water paddler
Water is beautiful. It’s also dangerous. Shot over three years, this film is a love story to the rugged rivers of New Zealand. For these explorers, kayaking over frothy rapids is an obsession. Welcome to their (waterlogged) world. If you’re one of them, welcome home.
Watch it here: youtube.com/watch?v=IYctDSHzusM
6. Only the Essential
For the thru-hiker
Filmed by hikers, this is an authentic experience along one of the world’s most famous trails. Follow the journey: the blisters, the fields, the flowers, the heat, the friendship. You might just feel like you’re on the trail with them.
Watch it here: youtube.com/watch?v=v8A0ad_2mPc
Looking for more epic adventure films? The Banff Film Fest has released short films that were Festival finalists in 2018 and 2019.
Watch for free online: banffcentre.ca/film-fest-at-home
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