Winter Wildlands Backcountry Film Festival to Benefit Hyalite Canyon Plowing Efforts

Posted: Thu, 01/28/2010 - 00:05

Do you treasure the ice in Hyalite? Is your winter gear where you can grab it and go immediately when a big dump hits? Do you whoop every time you see even the slightest skiff of the white stuff in the mountains? Come out to the Emerson and join fellow winter addicts at this year's Backcountry Film Festival sponsored by Northern Lights Trading Company and help ensure winter access in Hyalite Canyon will continue for years to come.

Now in its fifth year, the Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival highlights the beauty, diversity, and fun of the winter backcountry. Filmmakers that travel every corner of the globe submit their best backcountry work, and the top films are assembled into a night of fun for all-whether you like to ski, snowboard, snowshoe, or even just stay indoors by the fire in the winter.

This year, festival goers will vicariously surf the snow with a Japanese calligrapher, test extreme snow conditions in Vermont and ski the brief but majestic winter of Australia. As always, there will be plenty of world-class riding set to killer tunes in dramatic locations both familiar and far-flung.

The films are as diverse as the backcountry experience and will put a smile on the face of even the most winter-averse viewer.

Perhaps more importantly, the Film Festival benefits the Gallatin Forest Service's efforts to preserve and conserve winter landscapes for quiet users. All proceeds from the film and silent auction will benefit Winter Plowing of Hyalite Canyon. The Forest Service, along with Gallatin County began plowing the road to Hyalite two winters ago. Since then, the backcountry, Nordic and climbing communities have rallied behind the cause in an effort to keep the plows going. But the impact goes way beyond skiers and climbers. Hunters, fishermen, sled-riding kids and their families continue to view Hyalite as a winter wonderland, right in Bozeman's back yard.

The film festival is put together by Winter Wildlands Alliance and travels to 30 communities throughout the western United States, from Alaska to Santa Barbara. Funds raised stay in local communities to support efforts at forest planning and resource protection.

The show will be Wednesday, February 17 at The Emerson - the Silent Auction starts at 6:30pm and films start at 7pm. Admission is only $10 and tickets can be purchased in advance at Northern Lights or Barrel Mountaineering, or at the door for $12. Come early and bid on a variety of outdoor gear and other great stuff during the silent auction.

Winter Wildlands Alliance is a Boise-based national nonprofit organization working to protect winter ecosystems and to promote opportunities for backcountry and Nordic skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and winter hiking. For more information visit www.winterwildlands.org. You can donate to the plowing efforts in Hyalite through the Southwest Montana Climbers Coalition at www.hyalite.org.