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REVIEW: The Healing Power of the Outdoors in ‘HIGHLINE’

Highline feature length documentary

On the Highline Trail

The Highline Trail is a 100-mile trail through the little-traveled Uinta Mountains in northeast Utah. The Uintas are one of the few east-west ranges in North America. The are home to 13,528′ Kings Peak, the high point of Utah.

HIGHLINE is a feature-length documentary that follows the journey of five friends on a 10-day thru-hike of that namesake trail. You might remember our review of The High Sierra Trail. HIGHLINE is also produced and directed by Chris Smead of Outmersive Films, along with co-direcor Gordon Gurley, and features five experienced backpacking friends who undertake this remote trek.

Getting into HIGHLINE

Many hiking films look at the experience of a particular trail. HIGHLINE does that, for sure, but what sets it apart are the backstories.

First, the trail itself has a rich history, with details provided by local experts Tom Flanigan, Ryan Buerkle and Gordon Hirschi. You learn the history of the Uintas, and how the trail came to be.

As the story of the trek unfolds, we learn what connects these five friends, and the reasons for their love of the outdoors. There are stories of addiction, PTSD, struggles and triumphs.

Struggles and triumphs are shared on the Highline Trail itself, as they struggle with the altitude, lightning and rain storms, and long days on trail that anyone who has done a long trip can relate to.

HIGHLINE beautifully expresses the healing powers of being outdoors in nature and the bonds that connect us. The beauty and solitude was inspiring, and it might just inspire you to add the Highline Trail to your adventure list.


How to Watch HIGHLINE

BlueRay and DVD copies of HIGHLINE are available to order at and the film will be released on the following streaming platforms on April 7, 2020: Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, Microsoft Video and Vimeo.

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