Festival fever has hit and with only days to go until the start of this year’s Kendal Mountain Festival and over 150 speakers and 90 films to choose from; here are our picks to help you decide what to see.
Kick off your weekend on Friday afternoon with the premiere of Nick Brown’s Statement of Youth, a feature-length documentary tracing the highs and lows of the UK climbing scene in the 1980s. The film charts the exponential rise in climbing standards during this decade and shares the story of legendary climbers Jerry Moffat and Ben Moon through previously unseen archive material and new interviews. What Moffat and Moon couldn’t afford in material possessions they gained in time and this doc explores the correlation between living off the dole and progression in the sport.
Wake up to your daily dose of inspiration with alpinist Liv Sansoz, who takes to the stage to share her unique recipe for how to ‘ LIVe life to its fullest’ as she shares the story of her incredible achievement of climbing all 4000m peaks in the Alps in a single year. A true inspiration and not to be missed.
Stay high, in the mountains, for one of the festival’s much-loved specialist Sessions, the Ortovox Snow night. Hosted by Festival director (and former pro skier) Steve Scott, alongside superstar Olympic medalist snowboarder Jenny Jones, the stars of the snow world are out in force to provide the latest stories from the scene. Speakers include 2018 Winter Olympic Games slopestyle snowboard bronze medallist Billy Morgan, Canadian big mountain freeskiing legend Eric “Hoji” Hjorleifson, French big mountain skier Viv Bruchez, pro snowboarder Anne-Flore Marxer, long distance ski tourer Tania Noakes and GB Park & Pipe coaches Lesley McKenna and Hamish McKnight.
Sunday morning’s Mountain Equipment High Mountain session is essential attendance for those who climb or aspire to climb the world’s highest mountains alpine-style. Hosted by Stephen Venables, alpinist and co-author of the acclaimed book ‘Himalaya – Alpine Style’ and featuring Tom Livingstone, Chantel Astorga, Rick Allen and Nick Bullock, the session brings together stories and insights from a year of alpine-style climbing in the Greater Ranges.
Round off your weekend with one of two fantastic options. On Sunday afternoon Sir Chris Bonington joins the National Trust’s choir to read a eulogy in memory of the fallen from the First World War as part of the Trust’s commemorations of The Great Gift – the donation of 12 Lakeland summits to the nation. This special event will be hosted by BBCs “The Lakes” presenter Paul Rose and will have contributions from Fell and Rock Climbing Club members and their families who have worked and enjoyed this gift. This promises to be a moving event celebrating an important part of climbing social history.
Also on Sunday afternoon and not to be missed is the book launch of the recipient of the King Albert medal for mountain achievement 2012 Mick Fowler’s book “No Easy Way”. Mick will share the stories of his expeditions in the mountains of China, India, Nepal and Tibet. You can read an extract in our latest edition of the magazine!