? VIMFF FEAT Canada Night, Sunday, Feb. 12, 7: 30 p.m. (doors 6: 30 p.m.) Centennial Theatre Tickets $18 online/$20 doors. Info and full festival schedule: www.vimff.org.
RYLEY Breiddal is one of the few people who have walked the Continental Divide trail and Pacific Crest trail. And he did it alone.
On each trip Breiddal hiked more than 40 kilometres a day and over 4,000 kilometres in total. "There was no reason why I couldn't do it," Breiddal says. "I didn't train in anyway and I had barely gone camping before."
Breiddal, a chief technology officer at a small Victoria-based network security company, spends most of his days sitting in a windowless office solving problems. On his own time he is more adventurous and he will talk about his trips as part of the FEAT Canada evening at this year's Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival.
FEAT Canada is presenting a dynamic evening of nine different expedition and adventure-based athletes who have accomplished amazing feats. Each of the nine speakers will have seven minutes to talk about how their achievement.
As well as Breiddal speakers this year include professional mountain biker Ryan Leech and kayaker Hayley Shepard.
"I am going to talk about being alone in the wilderness," Breiddal says. "It's a mental grind and that was the part that was hard."
FEAT's producer/organizer Sean Verret says the event has something to offer for everyone. "It's a fabulous evening that anyone who is interested in anything to do with the outdoors would enjoy. Climbers, skiers, hikers, mountain bikers, they will all get something out of it and they will all learn something from our speakers.
For someone who might not participate in these types of events it's a perfect opportunity to get a small slice of what these events are like. We like to call it the ultimate on-chair adventure experience. It's really going to be an awesome night."
Verret says having short presentations that are in the style of TED.com presentations will keep the audience interested and focused.
"In our society when it seems like everyone has technology and things on the go. This is a really good way to keep someone's attention for seven minutes. Then they can get into something else and another person."
FEAT was originally created in 2010 by Lisa de Speville, an adventure racer who wanted to bring South African adventure stories together in stories. Verret found out about the event and wanted to create something similar in Canada. This past November, the first edition of FEAT Canada was held in North Vancouver.
"It was super successful," Verret says. "To host an event that is hard to explain to people on Facebook or in an email about what it was, was awesome." Last year's event drew around 400 people.
"It was a dynamic and electric evening," he said. "They were over joyed with the event, they didn't know what to expect but now they are going to tell their friends about it."
When Verret isn't busy with FEAT he is a consultant and a personal development coach. He has also adventure raced all over the world and in 2007 he won a world championship in 24-hour mountain biking race in California.
"Actually most of our speakers are just regular people who have day jobs, and have kids and maintain regular lives. It's just that some of them have chosen to do something a little bit more beyond sitting on the couch," Verret says.