12 Hiking and Backpacking movies you can stream on Vimeo

When I do not have time to hit the trails or head out for adventures I find myself looking for something to fill my wanderlust void. I have put together a list of 12 movies you can stream from Vimeo.com that are hiking and backpacking related. Enjoy!

1. Walking The West. Hiking 2600 miles from Mexico to Canada on the Pacific Crest Trail — Winner California Independent Film Festival (Best Documentary) and Vancouver Mountain Film Fest (Jury Award)”Walking the West” is an adventure Documentary about a New Zealander and an Irishman who quit their jobs, cash in their savings and walk 2626 miles from Mexico to Canada along one of the longest foot trails in the world, the Pacific Crest Trail. Walking a challenging pace of 21 miles a day for 4.5 months, they must cross the Canadian border before winter storms hit the Cascades.

2. Hiking the Wonderland Trail (2006)— 2 aerial turns around the mountain, the first with narrative information and fascinating tidbits, the second just taking in the exquisite topography of the upper mountain’s glaciers and stone. THE TRAIL ON FOOT is broken into 7 sections, capturing the nuances of the fall of 2005 on this timeless trail. Finally, I present a short film entitled won•der•land to tie it all together, set to original music. Because there is so much material that invites multiple viewing, I’ve made the rental available for one week. Please enjoy this labor of love!

3. Beauty Beneath the Dirt — Much more than a movie about hiking the Appalachian Trail…like The Real World meets Survivor. An emotional, reality-based story of three 20-somethings on the career fast-track who take a break from school to learn some tough life-lessons.

4. Hard Way Home — Sometimes the best way to let go of a troubled past is to literally walk as far away from it as possible. Hard Way Home is an intimate journey of the filmmaker as she struggles physically and emotionally to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. Filled with a cast of misfit hikers, wandering poets and other similar souls, the trek takes on surprising meaning about the values of human connection and freedom that in the process helps the filmmaker to overcome a difficult relationship. In the vein of classic first person documentary films like Sherman’s March, and the recently successful Maidentrip, this documentary is a personal journey with mostly point of view cinematography that takes its audience on the experience of a lifetime.

5. Walk North — There is a select community of people that know a great deal about the trail, but the majority of people have very little knowledge of the trail or that it even exists. The Appalachian Trail truly is a National Treasure! A stretch of land, a footpath, traversing thousands of miles and over a dozen different states up the east coast of the US, but it is so much more than a long distance hike!

6. WONDER MOUNTAINS — Hike the mountains of Japan. You will want to climb the mountain when if you see this movie. Hakuba,Yatsugatake,Yakushima,Tateyama and more…

7. Climb for Freedom — Discover what happens when seven ordinary men, looking for a bigger life, decide to hit the reset button. Training hard, stronger than they’ve ever been, they go mano a mano with “her”: Mt. Aconcagua in Argentina, one of the infamous Seven Summits — 22,834 feet high and spoiling for a fight.

8. The Climb to Katahdin — Follow Spiral, Reverie, and their Catahoula dog, CamDog, north on America’s oldest footpath; the Appalachian Trail. After a couple from Louisiana made it their goal to hike from Georgia to Maine in 2010, they take their first steps on the A.T. in April 2012. Even with all their preparation, the trail offered something new, beautiful, and unexpected every day. This film is a first hand account of what it’s like to hike northbound on the Appalachian Trail. Whether you are looking for inspiration, using it as a source of preparation for your own hike, or just want to live vicariously through the film, it’s a great, heart-felt, family-friendly take on what it means to live in the mountains for 6 months on the adventure of a lifetime. With a camera attached to CamDog’s backpack, the film features a unique dog’s-eye-view of the Trail.

9. Dusty’s Trail — After Dusty was diagnosed at the age of six with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a disease which occurs in 1 in 3,500 male births around the world, it awoke within his parents a devastating realization — their happy and playful child would suffer a long, progressively weakening condition. As a family, they united to learn as much as they could and strove to enjoy every moment in life, eventually inspiring Dusty’s mother to form Coalition Duchenne in order to raise global awareness through a yearly expedition to Mt. Kinabalu on the Malaysian island of Borneo. Dusty’s Trail: Summit of Borneo chronicles Dusty’s life and the remarkable journey his family and worldwide supporters take as they climb the 13,435-foot high mountain as a tribute to those with Duchenne.

10. LOST COAST — Shot against the backdrop of California’s most remote coastal region Lost Coast is a personal quest for transcendental values in troubled times and a quiet cinematic celebration of the beauty and immensity of the natural world. The film aims to remind us that today’s mindless commoditization, cold efficiancy and endless acceleration lead to a streamlined citizenry and to a spiritual vacuum. Equal parts film essay and travelogue Lost Coast questions today’s materialistic value system and reminds us that we do not exist outside of nature but that we in fact are nature.

11. The Mountain — What happens when an East Coaster takes on one of the tallest mountains in North America? Pittsburgh writer Robert Isenberg decided to find out. After living most of his adult life at sea level, Isenberg flew to Las Vegas, drove across Death Valley, and attempted to summit 14,500-ft.-tall Mt. Whitney — the tallest peak in the contiguous 48 states.

THE MOUNTAIN is his good-humored documentary about alpine hiking. A follow-up to his 2012 debut THE TRAIL, THE MOUNTAIN explores small-town California, Hollywood legends, a Japanese internment camp, and the spirit of the West. Using interviews and DIY filmmaking techniques, Isenberg illustrates a breathtaking desert landscape that continues to astonish pilgrims from the Eastern seaboard. He contends with ice-fields, altitude sickness, and the threat of bears — all in the hopes of standing higher than anyone in the country.

12. Mile…Mile and a Half — In an epic snow year, a group of artists leave their daily lives behind to hike & record the history of Yosemite to Mt. Whitney: 219 miles in 25 days. Along the way, they were joined by musicians, painters, teachers, and other adventure-seekers. In the midst of the grandeur & daily grind, they discover what matters most is the opportunity to seek inspiration & adventure wherever & whenever you can, with those around you.

Originally published at www.hikingthetrail.com.

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