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Mandatory Gear

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Mandatory Gear

Canadian Premiere
16 mins |
United States |
Emily Hopcian
LANGUAGE(S): English


In the male-dominated sport of adventure racing, co-ed teams of four race unsupported through rugged, wild terrain. To compete, each team must have at least one woman. Due to this rule, in the adventure racing world, women are often referred to as “mandatory gear” for competition.

In Expedition Oregon, North America’s toughest race, three women and one man flip that script and compete as a reverse co-ed team. Over the course of five days, Team Journey/Bend Racing challenges stereotypes—and themselves—as they navigate, trek, packraft, mountain bike, rappel and more through Central Oregon’s wilderness. Throughout, they must work as a team to overcome physical, mental and emotional obstacles to complete the race and discover what’s possible with a mostly-female team.

Mandatory Gear pushes back on gender stereotypes, explores what makes competing on a reverse co-ed team different, and celebrates and inspires female empowerment and gender equity in sports and the outdoors.



vimff mandatory gear emily hopcian

Emily Hopcian

Emily is an award-winning storyteller and content producer with a focus on character-driven stories of outdoor adventure and social and environmental impact. Throughout the past 10 years, Emily has written, edited, directed and produced stories for National Geographic Adventure, REI, Osprey, Sidetracked Magazine, RANGE Magazine, One World Play Project and more. She is the director and producer of "DURGA: Forging a New Trail," a short documentary film about a female guide in Nepal. Support from Arc'teryx, Teva, Osprey and more than 100 individual contributors made the film possible. "DURGA" premiered at No Man’s Land Film Festival in March 2021 and was awarded "Best of Festival." The film also received the "Inspiration Award" from Maine Outdoor Film Festival and was named "Best Documentary" at Detroit SheTown Film Festival.

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Feb 24 - Mar 5, 2023

Evening Show

Adult: $27 | Youth/Senior: $25

Feature Film / Matinee

Adult: $17 | Youth/Senior: $15


Adult: $40 | Youth/Senior: $38


  • MULTI-SHOW OFFER: Get 10% off when you add 2 or more different in-person show or workshop tickets to your cart. Must be the same ticket type to qualify e.g. 2 adult tickets. Discount automatically applied in cart. Cannot be used in conjunction with other discounts.



Jan 25 – March 12, 2023

Single Show: $18
Feature Film: $10
Online Film Pass: $90


  • OFFER: Get access to an additional 68 mountain films with 30% off the VIMFF 2023 Online Film Pass when you purchase a ticket to an in-person show or workshop (Save $27). Discount is automatically applied in cart.
  • We want to make the films accessible to everyone, so for those experiencing hardship due to their current economic situation, we have created a discount code to give $2 off single online show tickets, $1 off feature film tickets and $5 off the Online Film Pass. Apply the coupon code, “vimff23” at checkout to receive this discount.
  • Tickets sales close on Mar 12 at 11:59pm (PDT) and you will have until Mar 26 at 11:59pm (PDT) to view the films.