Summit County: Backcountry Ball features outdoor films

A pair of skiers head up toward an alpine bowl above Francie's Cabin, one of four backcountry huts managed by the Summit Huts Association. PHOTO COURTESY SUMMIT HUTS.

Nonprofit group forging ahead with plans for a new hut high on Baldy as the Forest Service accepts proposal

By Summit Voice

SUMMIT COUNTY — Summit Huts Association will celebrate the 10th anniversary of its annual Backcountry Ball with revamped fundraiser this Friday, Oct. 21, at the Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge.

Along with swapping stories about past hut trips and planning this year’s adventures, it could be a good time to ask the Summit Huts folks about their plans for a new hut on the flanks of Baldy Mountain. Word has it that the Forest Service has formally accepted the organization’s proposal and will soon begin the formal review process with a public scoping period.

The year’s Backcountry Ball will feature the same fun party as in past seasons, but after a two-hour reception — including food, beer and wine and a well-stocked silent auction — Summit Huts will present a showing of award-winning short films from this year’s Telluride Mountainfilm festival. Check out a trailer from the film festival and get more beta on the Backcountry Ball at the Summit Huts website. You can also follow Summit Huts on Twitter.

The list includes two of the most extraordinary adventure films from the part year: Cold, which chronicles a trio of climbers’ historic (and near tragic) ascent of 26,362-foot Gasherbrum II in Pakistan last winter; and Kadoma, the heartbreaking story of legendary expedition kayaker Hendri Coetzee, who was eaten by a 15-foot crocodile during a daring descent down the Lukuga River in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Other films to be screened include:

  • Desert River, an Alaskan powder-skiing movie artfully produced by Sweetgrass Productions
  • Dark Side of the Lens, a gripping window inside Ireland’s heaviest surf spots
  • Power in the Pristine, a film about an endangered river in Chilean Patagonia that was produced by climber Timmy O’Neill and writer Craig Childs
  • The Grid, which explains how one woman helped her small German village take over its regional power supply
  • Towers of the Ennedi, a radical rock-climbing film featuring free-solo superstar Alex Honnold and shot in Chad, Africa
  • WildWater, which shows why the North Fork of Idaho’s Payette River is considered one of the gnarliest whitewater kayaking destinations in the world
  • Way Back Home, the latest compilation of Danny MacAskill’s unbelievable trials biking skills, captured in his hometown of Dunvegan, Scotland

Tickets for the films and VIP reception, which includes food, drinks, participation in the silent auction and early seating for the films, cost $50 ($25 for kids 15 and younger). If you’re only interested in seeing the films, those tickets are $20. Kids 10 and under are free.

Doors open at 7 p.m. for the film presentation, which includes an intermission. To purchase tickets and find more information, go to www.summithuts.org or just show up Friday night.

What: Backcountry Ball featuring Telluride Mountainfilm on Tour

When: Friday, 7:30-10 p.m. (VIP reception and silent auction start at 5 p.m.)

Where: Riverwalk Center in Breckenridge

Tickets: Film tickets are $20, VIP tickets are $50 which includes food and drinks (kids 10 and under are free)

To Benefit: Summit Huts Association

Silent Auction: Items include Black Diamond and Trab skis, A-Basin season pass, Scarpa AT boots, Trek cruiser bikes, BCA avy beacon, lots of backpacks, local gift certificates and ski passes from resorts around the state

Door prizes: Two four-person hut trips will be given away at intermission

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