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The Beta Film Festival is an annual showcase of mountain bike films, celebrating the beauty of riding through the filmers, athletes and storytellers who live and breathe the sport. It is organized by Beta MTB, a quarterly mountain bike magazine and website that’s part of the Outside Inc. media group.
Fastest For Now—Temporary Records in a Timeless Place
On a cold November morning in 2020, ultra-endurance mountain bike athletes Kait Boyle and Kurt Refsnider both crossed the figurative Kokopelli starting line but set out upon journeys all of their own. Having established an FKT on the Kokopelli once before (and witnessed that record broken just months earlier), Kurt knew that this effort would require a faster ride than he once thought possible. For Kait, the attempt marked her first competitive goal, following a difficult recovery from a car crash two years before. Filmer: Cort Muller. Run Time: 19 min.
Long Way Gone
It is to this unbordered isolation that Tanner Stephens and Drew Boxold threw themselves late last summer, to create Long Way Gone. In a year where confinement and loneliness were the norm and daily priorities shifted from those that perhaps really matter to each of us, Tanner Stephens and Drew Boxold trip escape to California’s Eastern Sierra as an embrace of solitude on their own terms. Filmer: Drew Boxold. Run Time: 3:26
Margaux Elliott climbed a million feet on her mountain bike in one year while also working full-time as a product manager at Giro Cycling. In a year filled with an exceedingly high rate of plot twists and unexpected circumstances, this is the equivalent of “Everesting” more than 34 times or riding the complete Tour de France route (on dirt) every other month. She’s the first woman to achieve this literal milestone. Filmer: Satchel Cronk. Run Time: 5 min.
Fuel For Life: Blake Hansen
Some people spend their entire life discovering who they really are, and what they’re meant to do. Blake Hansen knew early on. The hardest part? Acceptance. Filmer: Katie Bennett. Run Time: 7 Min.
It Has Become Beauty Again
Jon Yazzie struggled to connect to his cultural identity for some time, leading him to make the wrong life choices and lack a sense of belonging. It wasn’t until he made his way back to the Navajo reservation that he could regain that connection and feel at peace with himself. He started bikepacking nearly a decade ago as a way to experience his native land, and last year, launched a bikepacking program for Navajo youth so they could gain a better appreciation for their culture. Filmer: Austin Smock. Run Time: 4:20.
A Trail For Everyone
A deeper look at the proposed Lost Sierra Route, which traverses over breathtaking topography, jagged peaks and high alpine meadows similar to the Pacific Crest Trail and the John Muir Trail. But unlike the PCT and JMT, this new trans-Sierra Nevada and Cascade Range route allows for all dirt trail travelers, including hikers, mountain bikers, moto riders, equestrians, trail runners, hunters, fishermen, wildlife, grandmothers and babies in backpacks. The Lost Sierra Route will be a trail for all to use that will link mountain communities together for recreational adventure and economic sustainability. Filmers: Ken Etzel and Carl Zoch. Run Time: 12 min.
Dillon Butcher gets sideways at the new Jordie Lunn Bike Park on Vancouver Island. Big jumps and perfect dirt. Filmer: Max McCullough. Run Time: 3 min.
World Premiere: The Outsiders—Sage Kotsenburg
An Olympic gold medalist on the snow, and a soulful rider in the dirt. Mountain biking may not be Sage Kotsenburg’s first love, but bikes, and the joy they bring, shape a large part of his off-season life. Filmer: Justin Olsen. Run Time: ~10 min.