2018 Ozark Streams Film Festival

The first ever Ozark Streams Film Festival went off without a hitch! None of it could have happened without great film makers, knowledgable speakers, an amazing crowd and of course our Ozark Streams. We also want to thanks Friend of the Ozark Riverways for helping us make this happen.

Below is the entire program. Enjoy!


Friends of Ozark Riverways / Film by Tom Malkowicz


Ozark Stories: Meet Manley Smith / Film by Ryan Hanlon, Route 3 Films


Ozark Stories: Come Back to the Ozark Riverways / Film by Ryan Hanlon, Route 3 Films


Ozark Hellbender Conservation / Film by Beyond Motion Productions for the St. Louis Zoo


Ozark National Scenic Riverways – Beyond the Surface / Film by NPS Submerged Resources Center


The Current / Film by Mark and Tom Malkowicz, Where’s Malko


Standing on the Current / Film by Mark and Tom Malkowicz, Where’s Malko


Return to the Current / Film by Mark and Tom Malkowicz, Where’s Malko


My Ozarks Episode 1: Jerica / Film by Ian McGee


Wild River / Film by Alex Turley, Focal Imaging 


Honorable Mention 

Current Event / Film by Chris Orndoff and Aaron Vas


Winning Submission

Spring-Fed / Film by Jon Link


Notable Entries

For Whom the River Flows / Film by Bill Cooper

Packrafts and Fat Bikes: 24 Hours on the Current River / Film by Aaron Arnzen

Film Festival Submission / Film by Brian Wise

Ozark Streams Film Festival Announcement


Friends of Ozark Riverways and Where’s Malko are excited to announce the very first Ozark Streams Film Festival! As the first film festival solely dedicated to honoring beautiful Ozark streams of Missouri, we hope you will join us at the historic Tivoli Theatre in St. Louis where we will celebrate the Current, Jacks Fork, and Eleven Point Rivers! Ozark Streams Film Festival will screen several short films (with guest commentary between films), followed by Q&A.

The festival will include films and presentaions from the St. Louis Zoo, Missouri Department of Conservation, the National Park Service, Route 3 Films and More.

The film festival also has a film competition and the winning film will be chosen as the grand finale! We are looking for films that share a compelling story and capture the natural beauty of Missouri’s Ozark streams. Films should be no longer than 3 minutes and filmed only in Missouri. Films will be judged by 4 categories: Cinematography, Editing, Audio/Music, and Story-line. Please send a link to your original YouTube or Vimeo film to the following email address: OzarkStreamsFilms@gmail.com Deadline for entry is May 21, 2018!

Please note: Because many of our beautiful Ozark streams are protected and administered by State and Federal Agencies, it is important filmmakers follow all rules and regulations as they apply to filming on these rivers (e.g. US Forest Service, National Park Service, Missouri Department of Conservation, etc).

Get your tickets here https://www.landmarktheatres.com/st-louis/tivoli-theatre/private-screenings


North Fork Fishing Report

By Thomas and Mark Malkowicz

Fly fishing has given us a whole new reason to explore new places in the Ozarks, such as the White River. It looks a lot like other large Ozark streams, but the White River also has a western feel about it. It can be much wider in spots, and has a bedrock bottom in places. We started in the upper part of the river at Twin Bridge, which is home to the native Bronzeback, also known as the smallmouth bass. Twelve miles downriver, past the massive Rainbow Spring, the White River turns into world-class trout water.

untitled (1 of 11)The inflatable BOTE boards did us well. Sliding off little waterfalls and down shoots was a blast. Literally standing on the water casting a fishing line can’t be beat.

IMG_1533 3.JPGSmallmouth bass on a top-water popper as night started to set in.

IMG_0018.jpgSpecial thanks to River of Life Farm for suppling the best map of the area.

untitled (3 of 11)A nice rainbow, caught not long after entering the blue ribbon trout water. 

IMG_9637Deciding on a campsite each night depended on whether we thought it was a good spot to fish. Unfortunately, we didn’t do that well at picking out campsites. 

IMG_9653Hopper-dropper seemed to be the fly combination of the weekend. Even with two slightly heavy flies, such as a hopper with a Pat’s rubber-leg dropper, the Woodard #4 Pinnacle rod casted well, while reacting delicately at the same time.  

Pat’s Rubber Legs.

untitled (7 of 11)Every time we found one brown trout in the red ribbon section, we always found a few more nearby. While the rainbows seemed dispersed, the browns seem to be somewhat stacked.

DCIM101GOPROGOPR3453.JPGWe have paddled past a lot of things over the years, but seeing evidence of the historic floods along the river is a good reminder of how unpredictable nature and flooding can be. It was crazy to see a new bridge being built alongside an old bridge that still lay twisted along the river. We asked the owner of Rainbow of Life Farm, an outfitter we met one day, if he had flood insurance to help rebuild his cabins. He looked at us and said, “This wasn’t supposed to happen …”

IMG_9642As far as Missouri Ozark streams go, the North Fork ranks as one of the best.

IMG_9663Keep them wet!


We ended our weekend where the North Fork of the White River runs into Norfork Lake. Even with the signs of destruction caused by recent historic flooding, this river is top-notch, and we can’t wait to get back on it!

Return of the Current

By Thomas and Mark Malkowicz

Akers Ferry.jpgOn April 30, 2017, two inches of water flooded the Aker’s Ferry Canoe Rental shop. The Ozark National Scenic Riverways (ONSR) and the surrounding communities were hit hard by this year’s historic flooding. Yet just a few weeks later, the outfitters were up and running; the park service had re-opened many of the access points on the upper Current River; and we were headed back to our favorite Ozark stream.

Continue reading “Return of the Current”

Paddling Across The Kitchen


Paddleboarding has somewhat changed the way we approach backcountry travel. Growing up canoeing rivers, we could never get enough; our trips got longer, our boat got heavier and heavier. When we were not paddling, we were packing backpacks with ultralight gear and hiking deep into the wilderness to find seclusion and a sense of exploration. The boards bring it all together, there is a sense of freedom when traveling light with only the minimal gear needed.

Continue reading “Paddling Across The Kitchen”

SUP StL: Our Favorite Paddle Board Spots Around St. Louis

by Thomas & Mark Malkowicz

One of the things that drew us to stand-up paddle boarding was the fact that it was a new sport. Even before our boards arrived, we started researching places around St. Louis that would be interesting to paddle, and we noticed there wasn’t much information out there.

The most rewarding parts about our new hobby was that it gave us a reason to explore parts of our city that we had never been to, and look at familiar places in a new way.

Continue reading “SUP StL: Our Favorite Paddle Board Spots Around St. Louis”

Mount Whitney

By Mark Malkowicz

This is a story and video of how my girlfriend Rachel and I traveled across Death Valley from Las Vegas, Nevada to Lonepine, California with hopes of reaching the summit of Mount Whitney. Standing at 14,508 feet, Mount Whitney is the tallest mountain in the lower 48 states. Our plan was to take the standard route known as the Whitney Trail but having left the first week of June, the trail wasn’t yet clear of snow. The snowy conditions forced us up by way of “the chute”, a winter or spring variation of the route.

whitney edits (17 of 22)
The chute is a steep band of snow leading to the ridge that would eventually take us to the summit. In the early morning hours, the chute is icy, making it ideal for cramponing our way up. Later in the day however, the hot California sun warms it and the ice turns to a wet slush. Our plan was to get up while it was frozen and back down before it got too wet.

This was Rachel’s first climb but despite her lack of experience, she was strong all throughout the summit day, making her a killer climbing partner. Not sure if either of us would have made it without the other and I’m looking forward to getting back on a mountain with her someday.

Caye Caulker by Boat

By Thomas Malkowicz

Water Taxi

Full throttle across the Caribbean Sea, our destination was the small island of Caye Caulker. Every seat on the water taxi was full, and, from a small window, Belize City was disappearing behind the boat. My wife, JoLee, and I are in Central America, on a 21-mile trip north into waters that become incredibly clear and blue. Small green islands are stretched out all along the horizon. Compared to the heat of Belize City, the air became noticeably fresh and cool as we approached the island.

Blackbeard Island National Wildlife RefugeThe free Belize Illustrated map I was reading during this 45-minute voyage was filled with information that explained why this area is a destination for people from all over the globe. It states that, “Belize is a haven for abundant flora and fauna … Belize has the lowest population density in Central America … the climate is pretty much near perfect … and Belizeans make you feel as welcome and comfortable, like nowhere else.” Perfect!

The day before, while waiting in line at the airport a gentleman had advised us to skip Belize City and hop on another plane. He explained it would save us a lot of trouble if we just flew to Caye Caulker. But being on the water is why we came here, and it only seems proper to explore this tropical setting aboard a boat.

Belize 1.1.jpg

Continue reading “Caye Caulker by Boat”