We’d all rather go out and live the outdoors than watch someone else do it, but there’s nothing wrong with getting a little inspiration every now and then.
With streaming video services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, getting a virtual stoke is just a click away. Here, in random order, are 11 of our favorites, a few of the best outdoor documentaries streaming on Netflix now. (Last updated Jan. 16, 2019.)
Top 11 Outdoor Documentaries on Netflix
Watch as avid skydiver Carl Boenish continues to push the envelope and create a never-before-seen sport. Archival footage and interviews dive into the controversial life and notoriously dangerous feats of the man known as the father of BASE jumping.
Get a taste for the training, sacrifice, and suffering inherent in climbing big mountains as elite climbers Jimmy Chin, Conrad Anker, and Renan Ozturk summit one of the world’s most difficult peaks. More than just a climbing movie, it’s a tale of perseverance, friendship, and survival.
Fishpeople explores the unique and powerful relationship humans have with the sea. Told through the eyes of six people from varying backgrounds, you’ll get to explore everything from diving deep spearfishing for food to hanging the waves capturing the perfect image. With a runtime of less than one hour and chock-full of beautiful footage, this is the perfect weekend treat.
The plot is simple: Four brave women set out to row across the Pacific Ocean from America to Australia. The details, however, are anything but ordinary as the crew spends nine months at sea overcoming extreme challenges. It’s history in the making.
Love “180 Degrees South?” Then this is the frigid surf film for you. Come along as six intrepid surfers head to Iceland in search of waves unlike any they’ve seen before.
This doc starts innocently enough with a Colorado cyclist determined to win a race. What unfolds is a shocking and mesmerizing tale of Olympic doping and Putin’s most wanted whistleblower. It’s no wonder this won an Oscar for best documentary.
An immersive, must-watch film, “Valley Uprising” details decades of Yosemite’s fabled big-wall climbs and climbers. Beginning in the golden age of early rock climbing, the film masterfully shows the rivalry between Royal Robbins and Warren Harding. It progresses to the Stone Masters of the ’80s and the present-day Stone Monkeys. Each generation has icons and manages to keep pushing the boundaries of what is possible in the world of rock climbing.
Karl Meltzer, known as the “Speedgoat,” has long dreamed of finishing the Appalachian Trail in record time. Follow along as this ultrarunner takes on the trail for the third and final time. Can he cover the more than 2,000 miles in less than 46 days, 6 hours, and 6 minutes?
This is the next best thing to being out in the mountains. This beautifully shot film takes you to some of the highest peaks in the world. Incredible work from some of the best high-altitude cinematographers and a delightful orchestral score make this a doc worth watching.
Originally released in IMAX theaters, this documentary features some truly breathtaking footage of America’s natural wonders. Come along as a trio of adventurers revisits the camping trip that inspired the creation of the national park system. It’s an enjoyable mix of history and beautiful wild places.
In 1998, Marco Pantani won both the Tour de France and the Giro d’Italia. No rider has repeated the endeavor since. Watch his rise to cycling stardom, fall, and ultimate battle against drug addiction. But the drug isn’t one you’d expect for a high-profile road cyclist.
Looking for more great movies? Check these out:
See page 2 for some more of our favorite outdoors trailers (that are no longer streaming on Netflix).