Ride ‘Out West’ With Kitsbow in the Steps of a Queer Stagecoach Driver

Film 2 of 10 in Kitsbow’s legendary ’36 Hours’ film series is out now.

Remember back when Kitsbow offered folks money to bike? The cycling brand chose six winners (six films) for its 2021 edition of the “36 Hours in Kitsbow” grant.

Specifically, 36 Hours in Kitsbow aims to highlight unique, short films that tell the story of a cycling adventure — any adventure — undertaken in just 36 hours. Each year, chosen recipients earn cash and gear from Kitsbow to help create their films.

The first feature film, “Finding Joy in Atlanta,premiered back in June. The second film is out now.

A Unique Narrative: About ‘Out West’ Film

Directed by Jay Melena, “Out West” follows four friends — Melena, Everett Ó Cillín, Silas Littlefield, and Scottie Junker — who retrace the route of an infamous stagecoach driver, Charley Parkhurst.

Parkhurst grew up an orphan and ran away out west to start a new life on their own terms. The stagecoach driver became an important historical figure during the California Gold Rush, running passengers and cargo from San Francisco to San Juan Batista.

Plot twist: Parkhurst was queer. Their identity is an example of a narrative often lost or undocumented in outdoor spaces.

“As more people discover cycling and the outdoors, it’s important to share inclusive stories of trans and non-binary riders,” said David Billstrom, CEO of Kitsbow, “and remove the stigma that can often be associated with adventure cycling.”

Learn more and find all the films at Kitsbow online.

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Mary Murphy

Mary Murphy is the Managing Editor of GearJunkie and serves as the leader of Lola Digital Media’s DEI Committee.

She has been writing about hiking, running, climbing, camping, skiing, and more for seven years, and has been on staff at GearJunkie since 2019. Prior to that, Mary wrote for 5280 Magazine in Denver while working as an outdoor instructor teaching climbing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and mountain biking at Avid4Adventure. Based in Denver, Colorado, Murphy is an avid hiker, runner, backpacker, skier, yogi, and pack-paddleboarder.

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