Sheffield Adventure Film Festival returns from 9 - 11 March


Sheffield Adventure Film Festival returns to the Showroom Cinema from 9 - 11 March bringing a packed programme of the latest climbing films to the big screen.

Following submissions from over 300 filmmakers from across the globe, this year's selection represents a wide-range of outdoor sports with dedicated sessions in climbing, running, biking, bike-packing and mountain sports. As a headliner of The Outdoor City Weekender, over a single weekend visitors to Sheffield will be able to combine watching ShAFF's programme of high octane, enquiring and thought-provoking films with a unique showcase of live events (the Climbing Works International Festival, Howard Street Dual and Magnificent Seven) featuring some of the world's top athletes. With plenty to inspire and a wealth of outdoor activity providers located across the city region, Sheffield is the perfect destination to get inspired, get active and explore city life.

Festival Director Matt Heason says: "Now in it's 13th year, ShAFF's enduring appeal is rooted in the strong spirit of adventure and love of the outdoors that the people of Sheffield share. Every year the festival provides an opportunity for this community to come together to watch, discuss and get psyched by the latest exploits of outdoor athletes and adventure seekers as they travel to stunning and unexpected locations around the world. Our themed sessions are also a great way in for anyone looking to explore this category of film for the first time."

Kicking off proceedings on Friday 9th March is festival partner, the British Mountaineering Council, with the public launch of their new Mend Our Mountains appeal. Mend Our Mountains aims to raise £1 million for a range of vital path repair projects within Britain's entire family of 15 National Parks, including the Peak District National Park. British broadcaster, anthropologist and BMC ambassador Mary Ann-Ochota and British mountaineer Alan Hinkes OBE will introduce the reasons behind the appeal. The first of the ShAFF film programme sessions will follow, with a screening of films celebrating mountains across the world.

Alex Messenger, Head of Communications at the BMC, says: "The BMC fights for the rights and protects the freedoms of climbers, hill walkers and mountaineers. With over 85,500 members, we're stronger than ever before, and to celebrate our growing membership we're very proud to return as the presenting sponsor of ShAFF 2018. The ShAFF programme will inspire everyone, from boulderers to mountaineers, and all our members will get 15% off tickets too."

Continuing ShAFF's commitment to promoting female leads and filmmakers, ShAFF will once again screen the winning film from BMC TV Women in Adventure competition, as well as ensuring women are fairly and positively represented in films selected as part of the wider festival programme.


ShAFF once again offers an all-action cinematic experience for the whole family with family friendly certified screenings housed in the 100 seater travelling cinema which will be located outside Sheffield's central train station. Look out for the Young Adventurer and Adventure Bites sessions through Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March. At the Workstation, free family-friendly activities including climbing, slacklining and caving will be provided by the Youth Hostel Association (YHA) will be held over the weekend.

The full ShAFF 2018 programme can be viewed via the ShAFF website. Tickets will go on sale on Friday 26th January. Can't wait or want a taste of what to expect? Join us for our Best of ShAFF 2017 screening on Tuesday 30th January or if you can't make the weekend we will host an early preview of the Best of ShAFF 2018 on Thursday 8th March.

Full climbing film listings and links to more information and tickets:


Alan Hinkes - The First Briton to climb the world's highest mountains

Friday, 7pm, Jagged Globe and Sunday 14.15pm, Screen 3, The Showroom

From award-winning and critically acclaimed filmmaker Terry Abraham (BBC hits 'Life of a Mountain: Scafell Pike', 'Life of a Mountain: Blencathra') comes this epic documentary celebrating legendary mountaineer Alan Hinkes OBE; the first and only Briton to have climbed all fourteen 8000m peaks. His enthusiasm for the British hills would eventually lead him to pioneering new routes on some of the world's most dangerous mountains and achieving his remarkable record of summiting the world's highest peaks. Featuring stunning world-class landscapes from the Lake District, Yorkshire, Snowdonia and the Himalaya along with unseen archive footage of life in the 'death zone' this breathtaking and powerful documentary will both inspire and entertain lovers of the outdoors and those who have an interest in British mountaineering heritage.

Magnetic Mountains, Sunday 10.15, Screen 3 The Showroom

Magnetic Mountains is an independent documentary that follows the story of an everyman who, after falling from an Alpine north face, is struggling to find a balance. Featuring some of the biggest names in mountain sports, it will explore the psychology of risk taking in the mountains, asking – is it really worth it?

Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey, Sunday 12.15, Screen 3, Showroom

Fred Beckey is the legendary American "Dirtbag" mountaineer whose name is spoken in hushed tones around campfires. This rebel climber's pioneering ascents and lifestyle form an iconic legacy that continues to inspire generations.

Climb Films 1
Saturday 15.00, Cinema Truck and Sunday 11.15, The Void

Climb Films 2
Friday 21.30, Screen 2, The Showroom, Saturday 17.00, Cinema Truck

Climb Films 3
Sunday, 3pm, Cinema Truck and Sunday, 19.15, The Void

Reel Rock 12: Break on Through, Climb Films 1

In high-end modern rock climbing, 5.15 is the top of the difficulty scale, a grade achieved by only a few men and never by a woman. Margo Hayes, a little known 19-year-old from Boulder, Colorado, is determined to change that. But pushing her body and mind to the absolute limit, she risks injury and failure in her quest to be the first.

Voyager, Climb Films 1

This film follows Irish climber David Fitzgerald, who after taking up the sport only 5 years ago, travelled to the Peak District to try the hardest bouldering problems on grit. After sending Deliverance (7B+) and The Ace (8B) David set his sights on Voyager sit start (8B+). Voyager was set by Ben Moon in 2006 and had only been climbed by two others (Niccolò Ceria and Ned Feehally) before David. It is widely regarded as the hardest route on grit. David was filmed in the Peaks and in his home city of Dublin over the course of two months in spring 2017, while working on the route and training indoors.

Mama, Climb Films 1

"Mama" is the most personal film from all I've created over the years. It explores parts of ours life that few years ago were completely unknown for me - being a parent and maintaining progress in your passion. My passion is the same as Kinga's - main character of the film. Climbing changed my life 13 years ago and now becoming a father in November I need to adjust to that new role. Making that film showed me that anything is possible. Kinga is the very first women in the world to be a mother of two kids and maintain world-class level sending 9a sport climbing route. Witnessing Kinga's climb live and being able to share it with the audience is a really special experience.

Stumped, Climb Films 2

"I don't want to be known as just a one-armed climber," says Maureen Beck, "I just want to be a good climber." Maureen Beck may have been born missing her lower left arm, but that hasn't stopped her from going hard. She takes whippers on 5.12 and crushes overhanging boulders, while shot-gunning beers. But she is not here to be your inspiration. "People say, 'Look, a one-armed climber, now I have no excuses.' I'm like, dude, you never had any excuses in the first place." Maureen is here to crush the gnar — with one bloody stump helping her get to the top.

Psycho Vertical, Climb Films 2

Raw and emotive, Psycho Vertical explores the intricate mind of Andy Kirkpatrick, a world-class climber and alpinist who lives a life of conflicting desires, identities and responsibilities, inspired by his best-selling autobiography of the same name. Firmly grounded by his impoverished upbringing in 1970s Hull, from a young age Andy's head has been in the clouds, filled with grand ideas of discovering who he is and what exactly he's made of, spurred on by his father's absence and translated into ascents of some of the world's most dangerous alpine routes. Though he knows the pain of living in poverty, pursuing his dreams comes before making a living. While compelled to share his chaotic personal life and make audiences crumple with laughter on stage, he chooses to test himself on some of the world's longest and most difficult climbs totally alone. A proud father, he cannot help but put ambition over security, even if that means risking his life time and again. By exploring his past, his present and his motivation for pushing his limits to the absolute extreme, we follow Andy on an 18-day, solo ascent of El Capitan, where life on the wall is precarious, tough and 'crushingly lonely', creating a raw and intimate portrait of one of climbing's most controversial, unpredictable and adored figures, and exploring themes of identity, fatherhood, and how our pasts shape us, drive us forward and stay with us all our lives.

Without a Partner, Climb Films 2

Rope Solo Free Climbing is a sport that few people know about and even less people do. We join Pete Whittaker, his long time climbing partner Tom Randall and Big wall solo climbing expert Andy Kirkpatrick as they take us through the paces of what it really means to make a solo-free ascent of El Cap.

"The Problem is if Pete pulled it off, nobody would even get it, nobody would understand how hard it was"… and to do it in a day, is totally insane". - Andy Kirkpatrick

"The ascent made by Pete on Freerider to me is hopefully the dawn of a new style of big wall solo climbing, big wall solo climbing on El Capitan for many years was just aid climbing. Now Pete has proven that it's possible to do that free climbing, but relatively fast" - Tom Randall

Steve McClure: Rainman, Climb Films 3

Where is your limit? Would you recognise it? For Steve McClure it's an endless series of matchstick edges and nothing holds, high above the Yorkshire Dales. If this climb was one move longer, it would still be a dream… instead it's the UK's hardest-ever climb.

Safety Third, Climb Films 3

For most climbers, it's safety first. But Brad Gobright is definitely not most climbers. Fueled by day-old donuts and unhindered by a fear of falling, this young talent is pushing the limits of scary trad and free solo ropeless climbing in his backyard playground of Eldorado Canyon. Having survived a few big scares, Brad is determined to make his boldest ascent yet - a first-ever free solo of one of Eldo's most exposed and difficult routes.

Hazel Findlay: Mind Control, Climb Films 3

For Hazel Findlay, climbing means one thing: pushing yourself. With a surgeon about to slice into her shoulder, Hazel has to contemplate the biggest challenge of all: a life without climbing.

Uruca ll Bugaboos Edition, Climb Films 3

Hugo and Lipe are back on the wall to face all challenges (and some bad luck) of alpine climbing—frozen and wet rock, poor communication with each other, inner demons, selfies, and the frigid, ever-changing weather.

Place of the Gaels, Mountain Films

A journey through Scotland as discovering that the weather is just as fickle, the people just as welcoming and the climbing just as demanding it's always been.

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26 Jan, 2018

Clashes with the CWIF yet again! Such a shame. It's like waiting for a bus, nothing happens for ages then they all come at once.

27 Jan, 2018

It'll always clash, they are both part of the outdoor weekend.

29 Jan, 2018

It's a deliberate clash. We decide many years ago that it'd be good to make it a bumper weekend with plenty going on in Sheffield. This has now grown into an actual thing - The Outdoor Weekender. From a ShAFF perspective we've tried to programme the mix of climbing films across the whole weekend so that it's possible to fit both events in. We're also talking to Ofo Bikes tomorrow and hoping to be able to make sure that there are a good supply of bikes at both venues so that it's easy to travel between. 

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