If you’ve ever wondered what the river is thinking, check out Colorado filmmaker Pete McBride’s film “I am Red” at the Moab stop of the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour on Monday, March 10. The short film has a thought-provoking narrative layered over a bird’s-eye view of the river at various intervals and is likely to hit close to home for anyone who loves the desert and the Colorado River.

Among the nine featured films is “Keeper of the Mountains,” which takes viewers on an inspirational visit with a 90-year-old woman who has been keeping a chronicle of her times in Kathmandu, Nepal since 1960.

“The Last Ice Merchant” visits with a glacial-ice-harvesting native of Ecuador, and “Valhalla” follows bold Scandinavian snowboarders who brave the elements wearing not much more than an avalanche beacon and a smile.

Grand County High School will host the 11th annual Moab screening of the Banff Mountain Film Festival. The screening is raising funds for the third year in a row for Access Fund, a national climbing advocacy and conservation group. Previous screenings benefited Utah Open Lands.

Castle Valley mayor Dave Erley has been organizing the festival since 2003 when gear manufacturer Petzl’s marketing director John Evans came to him with the idea of bringing the festival’s tour to Moab. This year’s screening will feature nine films selected from the 38 shown at the main festival held in Banff, Alberta, Canada, in November. The world tour begins immediately after the festival ends, stopping in 40 countries for over 390,000 guests at over 840 screenings.

“The audience excitement, enthusiasm for the event, and satisfaction year in and year out,” motivate Erley to organize the event. When Evans came up with the idea to bring the festival to Moab to support local climbers, local support was easy to find.

“We sell out and folks should buy their tickets in advance,” Erley said.

Access Fund has been working closely with the festival’s previous benefactor, Utah Open Lands, for over 10 years.

“In 2002, the Access Fund provided technical expertise and assistance to Utah Open Lands in purchasing 224 acres of land at the base of Castleton Tower, protecting access to the trail head. In 2003, Petzl, in conjunction with Utah Open Lands, started putting on the Banff Film Festival in Moab as a fundraiser for the Access Fund, to thank us for our hand in protecting the famous tower,” Access Fund development director Leici Hendrix said. “In addition, the Access Fund recently helped fund the new toilet at Castleton Tower trail head. We have also partnered with a local climbing organization, Friends of Indian Creek, to help protect Indian Creek’s climbing areas.”

One of the founding members of Friends of Indian Creek, Jason Keith, who is also Access Fund’s senior policy advisor, explained that including the group in the fundraiser was a logical choice.

“One of Access Fund’s corporate partners, Petzl, has been a longtime supporter of Banff film as well,” Keith said. “Petzl’s marketing director John Evans has also been a longtime supporter of the Friends of Indian Creek, and John came up with the idea of the local Moab Banff Mountain Film festival to support local climbers – Access Fund and Friends of Indian Creek by extension.”

The festival has been a success in the past, and projections for this year’s fundraiser are optimistic.

“Dave Erley has been the ringleader organizing everything locally, working with the festival’s traveling team, and generally managing the whole operation including donations to the Access Fund,”

Keith said. “Banff has been a fundraiser for the Access Fund for three years. It has raised $15,000+ for AF. Dave estimates that it is in place to raise $6,000+ per year for AF going forward.”

Nine films to be featured in Monday, March 10 screening

“We sell out and folks should buy their tickets in advance,”

When: Monday, March 10 at 7 p.m., doors open at 6:15pm

Where: Grand County High School Auditorium, 608 S. 400 E

Cost: $10 in advance and $15 at the door (if still available), can be purchased at Back of Beyond Bookstore, Canyon Voyages Adventure Co., Pagan Mountaineering, and Poison Spider Bicycles. For more information call (435) 259-4859