Hollywood can have its Oscars. We’ll take the Reel Paddling Film Festival awards any day. While it might not have drawn the likes of Brad Pitt and Angela Jolene, on Feb. 12 the front line of filmmakers from the paddling world descended upon Palmer Rapids, Ontario, for the 5th Annual Reel Paddling Film Festival. Pl checks in…
Premiering at the Bloor Cinema downtown Toronto and hosted by The Complete Paddler, the event drew the largest premiere audience in festival history to the first screening of this year’s award-winning films. “Never before has the Festival seen so many amazing films,” says organizer and emcee Scott MacGregor. “There is truly something for everyone in this year’s World Tour.”
And the winners are (drum roll, please):
1. Best Sea Kayaking Film: In Paddle to Seattle, J.J. Kelly and Josh Thomas use their homemade wooden boats to kayak the 1,300-mile Inside Passage from Alaska to Seattle.
2.Best Canoeing Film: This is Canoeing is a celebration of canoeing, showcasing some of the single blade’s most talented paddlers, wilderness explorers and whitewater adventures.
3. Best Whitewater Film: In Into Perpetual Ice five kayakers visit Greenland to explore the whitewater of this remote island.
4. Best Kayak Fishing Film: Kayak Fishing: Game On 2 follows big game kayaker Jim Sammons on a three-hour battle with a 120-pound tuna.
5. Best Adventure Travel Film: Finding Farley, in which Karsten Heuer and Leanne Allison, along with their two-year old son, set out on a 5,000-kilometre trip from the Prairies to the Maritimes to retrace the literary footsteps of legendary author Farley Mowat.
6. Best Environmental Paddling Film: Facing East is the final descent of the mighty Yangtze River before it is completely underwater and transformed into massive reservoirs.
7. Best Paddling Documentary: Kent Ford’s Call of the River traces whitewater’s history with as many twists and turns as the canyons its pioneers explored.
8. Best Amateur/Short Paddling Film: Falling is a thrill ride and a poetic meditation about harmonizing with the awesome forces of nature featuring the waterfalls of Agua Azul in Chiapas, Mexico.
9. Best Instructional Paddling Film: Sea Kayak with Gordon Brown offers exciting, practical instruction while on a four-day expedition around the Isle of Skye.
The premiere kicks off the Reel Paddling Film Festival World Tour, with 37 short-listed films screening in 75 cities hosted by paddling shops, clubs and events. For a list of all World Tour films, teasers of the the winning entries, the World Tour schedule, and hosting information Click here .