FREE RIDER | The North Face

Exploring Alaska spines with Victor de Le Rue and Sam Anthamatten

Victor De Le Rue and Sam Anthamatten push new boundaries in the wildest corner of Alaska. A bush pilot drops the small crew of five on a remote, unexplored glacier to conquer the spine walls in a series of ascents, each one more committed. Narrator Jérôme Tanon describes with honesty and a touch of sarcasm what exactly is going on here. Above all, he wants to feel what it’s like to be in their shoes, to understand what so-called “free riders” are made of, and what could be the purpose and beauty of “freeriding”.

“Victor De Le Rue and Sam Anthamatten push new boundaries in the wildest corner of Alaska”

If you’re keen to find out more, get your hands on the Whitelines Annual, Issue 123, where you can find our exclusive interview with Victor de le Rue, where he fills us in on tackling the insane new spines in AK. In the meanwhile, scroll all the way down to read the full press release from The North Face on Free Rider.

Victor de le Rue. Photo credits: Christoph Thoresen & Jerome Tanon.

Riders Victor de Le Rue & Sam Anthamatten
Directed by Jérôme Tanon
Produced by Jérôme Tanon, Victor de Le Rue, Sam Anthamatten
Cinematography: Christoph Thoresen, Yannick Boissenot, Jérôme Tanon

Supported by The North Face, Yeti, Smartwool, Blue Tomato
Coulor grading: Sébastien Baudemont @ Endjoy
Sound mixing: Thomas Roche @ Mix&Mouse
Edited by Jérôme Tanon
Photographer: Jérôme Tanon
Soundtrack: Kaleidoscope, Morgen, Yann Tiersen
Festivals & TV relations: Jérôme Tanon, Betty Coquillard

© Georges Biffeton production, Jérôme Tanon

EHO Mountain Film Festival – Best short film
International Freeride Film Festival – Best film
Transylvania Mountain Festival – Mountain film award
Rossland Mountain Film Festival – Best ski or snowboard film

Camp. Photo: Jerome Tanon.

Stabio, Switzerland, 15th December – Some say in order to finally know your true worth as a freerider, to become the real deal, you’ve got to ride the spines. It requires decades of experience to master the skill of managing your snowboard or skis on big lines, reading the snow and carefully calculating the risk versus reward to ride among heroes.

Enter Sam Anthamatten and Victor de Le Rue. Sam has spent his life travelling the world and achieving unimaginable feats in snowsports and mountaineering, learning the depth of knowledge needed to stay safe and at the top of his game. Victor has made a career out of breathtaking big mountain adventures, jumping in at the deep end to experience the snow like no other. Together, their long standing friendship has resulted in some of the most incredible expeditions, creating life changing experiences for the both of them.

‘Freerider’ is no different. Born from a dare to dream big, the pair set out to claim the first lines on unbeatable spines in a remote corner of the world. Choosing a distant corner of Alaska, their goal required a specific set of climate conditions, with guaranteed heavy snowfall and humidity to form the nearly vertical spines and bluebird days to ride. After months of scoping and recon, the destination was set and the lines earmarked.

In that time, to exist only for the power and the descent in the purest form of exploration, we watch as the pair slip into their truest selves searching for line after line, christening each one with a new name and crowning themselves king.

And at the end as they prepare to leave, reminded of their lives and families outside of the Alaskan bubble, you see nothing but joy for what they have achieved, and what they get to return to.

‘Freerider’ is the story of two friends entering their alternate universe where nothing matters but the snow and their line down.

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