‘Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey’ screening Thursday

Jason Reid

Jason Reid

PORT ANGELES — Hikers and other adventurers will learn more about the exploits of Pacific Northwest mountain climber Fred Beckey in a special evening Studium Generale on Thursday.

The documentary, “Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey,” will be screened at 6 p.m. at https://pencol-edu.zoom.us/j/89616075652. The meeting ID is 896 1607 5652.

Immediately after the film will be a question-and-answer period with Jason Reid, the producer, editor and writer of the award-winning documentary.

The event is free and open to the public, thanks to a contribution from the Peninsula College Foundation.

Beckey is recognized as a pioneer who made many first ascents of summits on the Pacific Northwest, western Canada and California. He painstakingly recorded his routes for others to follow.

Thanks to Beckey’s climbing journals and guidebooks, scores of young hikers are able to more safely navigate and explore mountains spanning the West Coast.

Reid said the film’s director, Dave O’Leske, took more than 25 trips documenting the exploits of Beckey.

The filmmakers searched through vintage “film footage dating back to the 1930s, thousands of pictures, hundreds of pages of journal entries” to construct his life story.

Working over 10 years, Reid’s creative team was able to get commentary about the eccentric early climber from some of the world’s most recognized alpine explorers.

They include repeat Mount Everest climber and phenomenon Reinhold Messner, Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard, Jim Whittaker, Conrad Anker and Royal Robbins.

Many of his peers admired and marveled at Beckey’s volume of early accomplishments while struggling to explain how he remained off the public radar in spite of his obsessive passion to explore new frontiers.

“We were all fueled by that belief and passion and that motivated us to get it done and out into the world, while Fred was still alive and able to see it,” Reid said.

The event is co-sponsored by Studium Generale, the Peninsula College student newspaper The Buccaneer, and the PC Journalism Department.

For more about the film, visit http://dirtbagmovie.com.

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