11 (More) Women-Focused Outdoor Films

About a year ago, after an email request from a reader, we published a list of 9 Outdoor Adventure Films Featuring Women. We knew then that it would be a topic worth returning to—both to explore what debuted at festivals (like No Man’s Land & Women’s Adventure Film Tour) this year, and to revisit films that we missed in our first round-up.

Check out these 11 outdoor adventure films we’re watching this summer:


1. Ay Mariposa (2019)

Film type: 60 minute documentary

An all-women film team tells the story of the communities and fragile ecosystems caught in a battle against the US-Mexico border wall—specifically, two women and the butterflies, la mariposa. The wall project endangers some of the richest and rarest wildlife habitat in the United States, and this documentary takes viewers up close in the Rio Grande Valley to meet the sensitive places and people confronting the impacts.

Learn more about the film, the crew, and take action at aymariposafilm.com

How to Watch: Attend a screening or host your own showing


2. Afghan Cycles (2018)

Film type: Feature-length documentary

Filmmaker Sarah Menzies (along with a women-packed crew) brings us the story of a generation of Afghan women pushing gender and cultural barriers by riding bicycles. With the stories of a diverse and growing group of women intertwined, the film leads us through a country of beauty and contradictions, upheaval and repression, of women risking their lives for the joy and liberation of riding a bike.

Learn more about the film at afghancycles.com

How to Watch: Stream on demand, buy the DVD, or host a screening


3. Running For Good (2018)

Film type: Feature-length documentary

At 14, doctors fold Fiona Oakes that she would never walk properly. Now she’s an ultra marathon runner attempting to set a new global record in endurance racing, by competing in the “toughest footrace on earth” — the Marathon Des Sables, a 250km race through the Sahara Desert.

Learn more at runningforgoodfilm.com

How to Watch: Streaming on Amazon, Vimeo, iTunes, or Google Play


4. Colors of Change (2018)

Film type: Documentary short

Filmmaker Jenny Nichols of Pongo Media takes audiences to Greenland’s retreating ice fields through the eye of Artist Zaria Forman, Nasa scientist, John Sonntag and Inuit Elder Angaangaq Angakkorsuaq “Uncle.” Colors of Change presents the intersection of art, culture and science in a region defined by climate change.

Watch the full film on Vimeo:

Learn more about the film project at pongomediaproductions.com


5. Mama (2018)

Film type: Documentary

Mama is the story of Polish sport climber and mother of two, Kinga Ociepka-Grzegulska, as she attempts to climb a route that no woman has ever done before. 

How to watch: Stream on AmazonRent or buy on Vimeo


6. The Mirnavator (2017)

Film type: Documentary short

For REI’s Force of Nature Campaign, this short film showcases the strength of powerhouse role model, ultra runner Mirna Valerio.

Watch the full film via Youtube:

Learn more about Mirna from REI and from She Explores Podcast Episode 73: How to Be a Role Model


7. Liv Along the Way (2018)

Film type: Documentary short

French mountaineer Liv Sansoz attempts to climb all 82 4000M peaks in the European Alps in a single year by skiing, alpine climbing, and paragliding when possible. This short film is a stunning capture of her experience.

Watch the full film via YouTube:


8. To Return – A Virtual Reality 180 Short Film About Wild Ice Skating (2019)

Film type: Virtual reality short

To Return is an immersive visual and auditory experience from figure skater Laura Kottloswki’s point of view—on wild ice. Although it’s best viewed with a headset, it’s still pretty stunning seen from a mobile or desktop.

Watch the full film via Youtube:

Learn more about Laura Kottlowski from our own interview with her!


9. Stumped (2017)

Film type: Documentary short

Mauren Beck may have been born missing her lower left arm, but that doesn’t stop her from climbing hard.

How to Watch: Stream on Vimeo


10. Maidentrip (2014)

Film type: Feature-length documentary

At just 13 years old, Dutch sailor Laura Dekker sets off with a dream of being the youngest person to ever sail around the world alone. This documentary is a first-person narrative of her legal battles, media storm, and eventual solo voyage.

How to Watch: Stream on Amazon


11. Moksha — Freedom Through the Mountains (2019)

Film type: Documentary short

AndShesDopeToo’s first film project, Moksha follows a community of Nepali women mountain bikers in Kathmandu through various aspects of culture and how things are changing for new generations.

Watch the full film via Vimeo:


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What are your favorite outdoor films?