Banff Announces 2011 Film and Book Winners


The Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival has announced its 2011 winners. The grand prize for films went to the movie Cold (preview below), which features the first winter ascent of Gasherbrum II in Pakistan with Cory Richards, Simone Moro, and Denis Urubko.

From Forge Motion Pictures and producter/director Anson Fogel: "For the past 26 years, 16 expeditions have tried and failed to climb one of Pakistan's 8,000-meter peaks in winter. On February 2, 2011, Simone Moro, Denis Urubko and Cory Richards became the first. Cory is now the only American to summit any 8,000-meter peak in winter. The journey nearly killed them. Cory carried a small camera and filmed the ordeal constantly. This is their story, as seen from the raw, honest perspective of Cory's lens." It was also given the "Best Film - Climbing" and "Audio Post-Production Scholarship" awards.

Other winners include (USA films in bold):

  • The Banff Centre Award for Creative Excellence: The Wolf and the Medallion, by Jeremy Collins

  • Best Film - Exploration and Adventure: Kadoma, by Ben Stookesberry

  • Best Film - Mountain Culture: The Sun Behind the Clouds: Tibet's Struggle for Freedom, by Ritu Sarin

  • Best Film - Mountain Environment: Spoil, by Trip Jennings

  • Best Film - Mountain Sports: The Freedom Chair, Mike Douglas

  • Best Film - Mountain Wildlife and Natural History: Broken Tail, by John Murray

  • Best Short Mountain Film: Chasing Water, by Anson Fogel and Peter McBride

  • Best Feature-Length Mountain Film: All.I.Can, by Malcolm Sangster and Dave Mossop

  • People's Choice Award: On the Trail of Ghengis Khan, by Richard Dennison and Tim Cope

  • People's Choice Award - Radical Reels: REEL ROCK: Race for the Nose, by Peter Mortimer

  • Special Jury Mention: Journey on the Wild Coast, by Greg Chaney

On the book side, Freedom Climbers by Bernadette McDonald won the grand prize. From Banff: "Freedom Climbers weaves a passionate and literary tale of adventure, politics, suffering, death and ultimately, inspiration. This is the story of a group of extraordinary Polish adventurers who emerged from under the blanket of oppression following World War II to become the world’s leading Himalayan climbers. Although they lived in a dreary, war-ravaged landscape, with seemingly no hope of creating a meaningful life, these curious, motivated and skilled mountaineers created their own free-market economy under the very noses of their Communist bosses, and climbed their way to liberation."

Other winners include (USA books in bold):

  • Best Book - Mountain and Wilderness Literature: Murder in the High Himalaya, by Jonathan Green

  • Best Book - Adventure Travel: The Magnetic North, by Sara Wheeler

  • Best Book - Mountain Image: Unexpected: Thirty Years of Patagonia Catalog Photography, by Jennifer Ridgeway and Jane Sievert

  • Best Guide Book: Peak District Bouldering, by Rupert Davies, John Coefield, and Jon Barton

  • Best Book - Mountaineering History: Desert Towers, by Steve "Crusher" Bartlett

  • Special Jury Mention: Crossing the Heart of Africa, by Julian Smith

Click here to see the Banff Film Festival World Tour schedule.

COLD - TRAILER from Anson Fogel on Vimeo.