Last year, Jen and I went to the inaugural Trails in Motion film festival in SF. This year it was back, and it was much closer, just a few miles away in Burlingame at A Runner’s Mind, one of my local running stores. It took place on Sunday evening. We got a nice bunch of people together including Amanda and Matt from our Ragnar team.
There was some palaver about the start time. The online site said 5pm. Then we noticed that the films started at 6pm so we arranged to meet at 5.15 for drinks first. Then, when we got there we were told the films would start at 7pm. So off we went to polish off some wine first. When we eventually got back to the shop at 6.45, we were told that actually we’d start the films when it got dark as we would be sat outside – roughly 7.15. This was a little annoying – it meant that one of our group actually had to leave before the films started. Not ideal. Also, sitting outside on a Northern California evening can be a cold affair and if Michelle’s husband hadn’t rocked up with three giant blankets, I don’t think I would have lasted very long. So some clarification about the start time and a warning to wear ALL THE LAYERS would both have been useful. (Jen contacted the organiser with this feedback and he responded really positively, so hopefully this was a one-off).
Okay, moaning aside, there were some excellent films there. There were 9 in total, ranging from a short of 3 minutes to a longer film of just under an hour. My favorites, and the ones I’d recommend you check out, were:
This short film follows the intriguing Ruby Muir, a young New Zealand trail runner who talked frankly about her relationship with trail running and how it turned into an unhealthy obsession when she lost her dad. I found this really moving and wanted to give her a big hug. She’s a fascinating character. NZ looks spectacular. Book me a ticket now!
This 3 minute film went down well with the crowd because it’s based in the nearby Marin Headlands and features a lot of well known characters in the local trail running scene. Gorgeous scenery.
This Salomon Trail team film features Bernd Heinrich, who’s written a well-known running book. It’s fascinating for its portrayal of his simple life in a cabin in the woods of Maine and I particularly loved it when he discusses living life without as many possessions as possible. As a girl who gathers more possessions than she needs or intends to, it was a good challenge. His tree-climbing exploits are also quite jaw-dropping.
This hour-long film follows Nikki Kimball as she runs the 273-mile ‘Long Trail’ in Vermont. She’s a remarkable lady, tough as nails so it’s great to watch her on her highs and her lows. Her aim to inspire girls and women to push their limits is inspiring but I have to admit, at the end I wondered why on earth anyone would put themselves through such an ordeal. Clearly I just don’t have that type of personality! But she does and she’s amazing.
Also worth watching is a very short film about Anne-Marie Flammersfeld, a German trail runner. Switzerland looks gorgeous but it ends with the best quote of the night which I suspect doesn’t translate well from the German…’it makes me really happy that I can infect people with my running virus’.
There was also a raffle. I won some socks which I swapped with Amanda for a t-shirt that she won and local trail runner and blogger Scott Dunlap popped in briefly – his blog is definitely worth reading, he’s a great runner and seemed like a really nice guy too.
I didn’t take any photos last night because I was having too much fun. Shocking blogger behaviour, I know.
All in all, a good night out! Maybe not as good as last year’s festival but still – what a joy to spend a night with friends watching some amazing trail running!