Best of Banff 2012: The Roberts Reports

The writer, festival veteran, and sometime curmudgeon shares his take on the ultimate mountain celebration

Every year, outdoor enthusiasts, athletes, filmmakers, writers from around the world -- and most of the time, our iconic arbiter of it all, David Roberts  -- make the pilgrimage to Alberta BC for the Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival held at The Banff Centre. Over eight days, those who attend get the first glimpse of some the best artistic work inspired by the outdoors and outdoor athletes. Events include readings, film premieres and panel discussions with big names such as world-renowned mountaineer Conrad Anker and celebrated author Bernadette MacDonald.

At the festival’s close, Banff’s top film picks are shipped around the globe for the world tour. By the end of the year, more than 245,000 people across more than 32 countries have taken part in the event.  

This year, the event ran from Oct. 27-Nov. 4, and Roberts, a mountaineer and author of outdoor classics such as The Mountain of My Fear, took part in the festivities once again, this time for The Active Times.   

Here are his reports  on the highlights of Banff 2012.

 Part I: You Had to be There

 Part II: Riffing on Mallory, Everest and Sex

 Part III: The Best Mountain Book Ever Written

Part IV: Night of the Legends and New Kids

Part V: The People's Choice

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