Backcountry Film Festival

As a Winter Wildlands Alliance SnowSchool, SOLE hosts the Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival in Sandpoint and other locales to raise critical funding for our SnowSchool Experience SM program – part of the nations largest on-snow outdoor science program.  During this annual fundraising event attendees are treated to a series of juried and award winning films – shown throughout the nation and even internationally!  In addition, SOLE always has a ‘Rockin’ Raffle’ and a fun active online ‘Holiday Silent Auction’ with novel gifts from event sponsors including major gear manufacturers & local artisans; and other special surprises!  Click here to start your bidding now!  Each year is different, so come down and support our organization — so we can get local area youth out on the snow to explore > achieve > lead!

The Skinny

The Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival celebrates its 11th Anniversary aimed to inspire winter adventurers to seek the snow less traveled. Produced by the Boise-based nonprofit, Winter Wildlands Alliance,  the Backcountry Film Festival makes its world premiere in Boise, Idaho and will then tour to more than 100 showings around the world, including a stop in good ‘ole Sandpoint, Idaho!  This annual event includes a series of films, includes those winning awards all which celebrate the human-powered experience, a great silent auction and raffle with great holiday gifts from local vendors and gear vendors like Big Agnes and G3, and great refreshments.

Location: Panida Theater | Sandpoint, Idaho
Date: December 1st, 2017
Times: Doors: 6 PM | Show: 7 PM


The Backcountry Film Festival is renowned for its mix of professional and grassroots films – from well-known filmmakers who search backcountry corners across the globe to submit their best work to first-timers who take a video camera out on their weekend excursions.  The festival was created in 2004 to highlight Winter Wildlands Alliance’s efforts to preserve and promote winter landscapes for human-powered users. From a single showing in Boise that first year, the festival has grown to include showings in locations throughout the United States and Canada and now in Antarctica, Europe, Australia and Asia. Funds raised stay in local communities to support like-minded, human-powered recreation and conservation efforts and to raise awareness of winter management issues, avalanche training/safety and winter education programs.  Come take the ride and support a great cause while doing so!

Centered on our mission to provide transformational experiences outdoors for local area youth, SOLE will continue to host this annual event to raise critical funds for our SnowSchool Experience SM Field Campus at Schweitzer Mountain Resort, as well as pilot programs at other site locations, including Lookout Pass, Flatiron Mountain and Mt. Spokane.  

Some examples of the private, public, and home school groups that participate in SOLE’s SnowSchool Experience SM program each year:

  • All 5th graders in Lake Pend Oreille School District
  • Clark Fork Junior High School / High School Outdoor Track
  • Lake Pend Oreille High School
  • Selle-Valley Carden School
  • Post Falls Middle School

Event proceeds will ensure youth will have access to novel and purposeful outdoor education opportunities during the winter months, including essential gear and teaching supplies.  To actualize this vision, besides proceeds collected from ticket sales, this showing will continue to serve up an excellent outdoor gear and local business silent auction from event sponsors  for those in search for some unique holiday gift ideas; a fun raffle; local wine and beer for patrons; and special presentations on this program – all of which make this yearly event definitely worth attending!

All proceeds collected during the Backcountry Film Festival support getting youth in our public school system beyond classroom walls and out on the snow to learn about their winter wildlands. With an average poverty rate of above 40% in our local area schools our needs are noteworthy making this event of special importance.

During the 2016-17 school year SOLE aims to work with 450 + local area youth in our SnowSchool Experience program. With your support we can make this dream a reality for so many young people.

Tickets & Additional Information

Advance ticket purchase is recommended.  SOLE offers 2 ticket levels for this event:

  • $10 Advance General Admission Ticket (includes 1 raffle ticket); $12 DOS
  • $20 Donation Ticket (includes 3 raffle tickets – and puts a local area youth on the snow for a day!)

Tickets will be available at the following local businesses:  Evans Brothers Coffee Roasters, Alpine Shop, Eichardt’s, and the Panida Theater and online!

Are you ready to secure your tickets?

Follow the simple steps below to get started.

  1. Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 2.28.53 PMClick on “Buy Tickets Now!”
  2. Choose “Price Level”.
  3. Choose “Quantity”.
  4. Choose “Delivery Method”.
  5. Click on “Add to Cart”.
  6. Check out.
  7. Get ready to have some serious fun!

The Line-Up

The 2016-17 Backcountry Film Festival Line Up:

  • Space Within
  • Ruth Gorge
  • Below Zero
  • The End of Snow
  • Follow Through
  • Genesis
  • Idaho 12Vers Project
  • Adventure Not War

Can't go to the event?

You can still make a difference!

Even if you can’t go to the event, you can assist us in providing transformational experiences outdoors for our youth.  Simply make a donation today and earmark your contribution by clicking on the button below!

Become An Event or Program Sponsor! 

Let’s face it – there is no better way to showcase your business or organization than to become a Backcountry Film Festival or SnowSchool Experience SM Program Sponsor!  Intentional and transformational experiential education programming of this magnitude is downright expensive, as is hosting fundraising events like the Backcountry Film Festival.  As such, SOLE offers several sponsorship options (see below) to ensure that that we are able to funnel all event proceeds to provide these transformational outdoor experiences for our local area youth.  As a result of your support, we are able to unplug and reconnect more local area youth to the outdoors to explore > achieve > lead!

Finanical Sponsorship

Looking for a novel way to advertise your business?  You can become a financial sponsor for our Backcountry Film Festival and/or specific SnowSchool Experience SM Field Campus.  We have several sponsorship pricing levels to ensure that you stay within your budget while seeing your dollars at work for good, and get some good ‘ole brand recognition. Financial Sponsorship includes, but is certainly not limited to the following options:

  • Sponsoring the Backcountry Film Festival
  • Sponsoring a specific group, class, or school so they can attend
  • Sponsoring a specific SnowSchool Experience SM Field Campus

In-Kind Sponsorship

Each year SOLE also solicits in-kind donations for our incredible silent auction and raffle which occur during the Backcountry Film Festival, as well as, our SnowSchool Experience SM Program at large. Needless to say, this is another great way to showcase your business! In-kind donations include, but are certainly not limited too:

  • Donating outdoor gear, equipment, special local services or other novel items for our event silent auction, raffle, or specific SnowSchool Experience SM Field Campus
  • Donating marketing materials or radio spots for the event and/or program at large
  • Donating other services utilized by our SnowSchoolExperience SM Field Campuses

Benefits of Sponsorship

We realize that your investment is valuable! Besides doing some serious good, we offer several benefits to becoming an event sponsor, including but not limited to:

  • Tickets to the Backcountry Film Festival
  • Recognition in event press releases, social media outlets, blog postings, newsletters, and radio spots
  • Recognition in program marketing materials
  • Recognition during event announcements
  • Recognition during event slide shows
  • Recognition on SOLE website
  • Recognition at specific SOLE Field Campus

Specific benefits depend on Sponsorship Level.   

Become a sponsor today!

Financial or in-kind donations they all go to support our effort to immerse youth in a natural learning environment!

Corporations, businesses, and individuals can also sponsor a specific student, class, school, youth program or entire SnowSchool Experience SM Field Campus by providing in-kind and/or financial support!  This allows you to have the benefit of doing some good for our youth while getting some exposure for your business!   If you are interested in these options, please contact us or click on the button below to get started today!

2017 – 2018 Backcountry Film Festival Sponsors

We are sincerely grateful to the following individuals, organizations, and/or business have committed to partial or full sponsorship of our annual Backcountry Film Festival event.

Wolverine Level ($1,000 +)

Lynx Level ($500 – $1000)

Schweitzer Mountain Resort  knows what it means to give!  Besides being a phenomenal mountain with epic powder and over 2,900 acres of skiable terrain, Schweitzer continues to deliver when it comes to supporting local organizations like SOLE.  For the past 4 years, the Schweitzer family has provided the opportunity for SOLE to host our transformational SnowSchool Experience programs on site, as well as, donating to our Backcountry Film Festival year in, and year out.  This year come again and bid on a full season pass!


Downing Mountain Lodge in the Bitterroot Range is the choice for seriously fun-loving backcountry skiers in the Northern Rockies. Offering exceptionally comfortable amenities, private access to Downing Mountain, guide service, ski runs from beginner to expert, and vertical relief of 4,000 feet, the lodge accommodates groups up to 12 people. In the non-skiing months’ guests to the lodge enjoy fly fishing, hiking, rock and mountain climbing, mountain biking, and hunting in the spectacular Bitterroot Mountains and Valley of Western Montana. John Lehrman and Jenifer Callahan own and operate the lodge and are lead guides for skiing excursions in winter and fishing, climbing, and mountain biking in summer.


ba_color_cmykBig Agnes is one of the leaders in outdoor gear and they know how to give back! For the past 15 years, they have been innovating the outdoor industry and believe that “life is too short to use bad gear”, which explains why their gear has a huge following and have won countless awards!


Swhift Stainless Fabrication Swhift has been a leader in the industry of manufacturing stainless steel products in our state of the art facility since 1980. We produce the highest quality product available at a very low price. Our products are proudly made in the USA!

Grizzly ($250 – $500)

Grizzly Outdoor Industry Sponsors Include:

Caribou ($125 – $250)

Caribou Outdoor Industry Sponsors Include:

Marten Level ($50 – $125)

Marten Local In-Kind Sponsors Include:

  • Eichardt’s
  • Thunder’s Catch
  • Fresh Sunshine Flowers
  • Finan McDonald
  • Mattox Farm Productions
  • Greasy Fingers
  • 7B Boardshop
  • The Hive
  • Living Earth Naturals
  • Sandpoint West Athletic Club
  • Trinity at City Beach
  • La Chic Boutique
  • Wildwood Grilling
  • Idaho Pour Authority
  • Baxter’s on Cedar
  • Karen Robinson
  • Keokee
  • Pend d’Oreille Winery

Marten Outdoor Industry Sponsors Include:

  • GSI Outdoors