Challenge 8000 - Mountain Film Festival Award


The TV Documentary "Back to the Killer Mountain", which was filmed by the UK's top high altitude mountaineer Alan Hinkes for Tyne Tees TV, has won the Best Mountaineering Film award at the Kendal Mountain Film Festival.

"Back to the Killer Mountain" is the story of Alan Hinkes' fourth and successful attempt to climb Nanga Parbat, which means Naked Peak, in North Pakistan. Alan scaled the 8125m peak, the world's ninth highest mountain on the only day in 1998 when the weather conditions were favourable for a safe ascent. Alan hit the headlines in 1997 attempting Nanga Parbat, when he sneezed on some chapati flour and slipped a disc. He lay in agony on the mountain for ten days before dragging himself down slightly lower to a
height where a helicopter could rescue him and take him to hospital. He made a full recovery and returned in 1998 to complete the climb. The Documentary relates his experiences and feelings on returning to Nanga Parbat dubbed the 'Killer Mountain' due to the high number of fatalities.

Alan is an accomplished cameraman and carried out almost all of the filming for the documentary, including on the summit. The programme was directed by David Thomasson and broadcast by Tyne Tees TV on 10 August 1999.

"I am delighted that the Documentary has received this award," commented Alan Hinkes. "When I am on the mountain all of my energy goes into climbing and surviving in the high altitude conditions known my mountaineers as the death zone. To film when I am debilitated and exhausted can be an enormous effort. But I know how important the images are to convey the drama, danger and excitment of the mountains to other people and so I make that extra effort. It is very gratifying to receive an award and my thanks must go to David Thomasson and Tyne Tees TV for helping to put the documentary together."

The Kendal Mountain Film Festival attracts film entries from around the world in climbing and adventure sports. The judges were TV Director Jonathan Glazier (who works on "Gladiators" and "Don't Try This At Home"), Paul Pritchard, author and climber, Audrey Salkeld, writer and climbing commentator, Bernadette MacDonald, Director of the Canadian Banff Mountain Film Festival and Roger Payne, secretary of the British Mountaineering Council.