Document type : vocene
Date : 2007-02-13
Description : VOCene #24
Content :
VOCene #24 - Feb 14, 2007
In this VOCene:

I. Letter from the Editor
II. News
III. Slide Shows
IV. Upcoming Trips
     1) VIMFF
     2) Neve
     3) Ice-fishing
     4) Red Rocks
     5) Spearhead Traverse
     6) Banquet
V.  Trip Reports
     1) Red Heather
     2) Squamish
I. Letter From the Editor

There are many scientific theories on the demise of the Mountain Caribou and a lot of angry people at the BC government's strategy to save the Mountain Caribou. Ignoring science, I think the real reason why the caribou are endangered is because they are awkward. They make moose seem smooth. Have you ever seen a caribou run? Every leg goes in every which direction. Caribou have huge antlers which get tangled in everything and don't do much for their already poor balance. If you invite a caribou over for dinner, put the fine china away and tie up all of the curtains. Don't get me wrong, Caribou have much better athleticism than me or any other human, its just that their predators are so much more agile and smooth. The BC government has decided to shoot any carnivore that is less clumsy than the caribou (which is pretty much all of them). This strategy may work short term, but all the caribou really need is some place to hide where no one will see them and make fun of their awkwardness. These self conscience animals will then have a chance to do what large ungulates do best where they will be free from ridicule by much more elegant animals. 

If you want to know more about the endangered Mountain Caribou that is factually correct, please ignore anything that I have just written and go to the Dave Quinn talk.

II. News

-Their is a $1000 scholarship, available to anyone in a BC post-secondary school who is in "a degree program in a discipline that contributes to an awareness, appreciation and understanding of our natural environment". More info at or email

-Trip to Ellesmere Island, Quttinirpaaq National Park. There is still space on John Sapac and Jenny Faulkner's July 2007 trip in Canada's High Arctic. This will be a rare opportunity to explore the Tanquary Fiord area, around 82 degrees north, and to see musk oxen and the midnight sun. If you would like to take advantage of the chance to visit this amazing, stark environment, please call Jenny at 604-602-1428, or e-mail her at: jemf(at)

-A founding member of the VOC, George Robinson (February 11, 1905- February 7, 2007) has passed away.

-Wet, Wild Whales at Risk, Parks Canada Speakers Series at the Vancouver Public Library. Will be at 7:30pm on Tuesday, February 20, 2007 in the Alice MacKay Room at the Central Library, 350 W. Georgia Street. Admission is free and all are welcome.

III. Slide Shows 

When: February 14, Wed. 7pm  
Where: Civil and Mechanical Engineering building, room 1202

Dave Quinn will be speaking about a dual hike/ski traverse of the Purcell's from Kimberley to Rogers' Pass and the endangered mountain caribou. Donations will be accepted at the door. 

IV. Upcoming Trips

1) Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival
When: Feb 16-22
Where: All over, but mostly in North Van

Christian has managed to get VOCers a discount on VIMFF tickets. However, to get the deal, you have to buy them in advance by Friday, Feb. 16th, 7:00 am - sign-up on the wiki. Payments for the tickets have to be giving to Christian, so if you sign-up, you better pay or the Montreal Mafia will come after you.

2) Neve Traverse
When: Feb 17-20
Where: Garibaldi Park

This is a classic Vancouver area trip with a nice mixture of touring and yo-yoing possibilities. Total distance is 45km and if everything goes as planned, all nights are spent in a hut. This trip does go through avalanche terrain and the route finding is far from trivial (someone on the trip should have done it before). Also, a huge section of the trip is on a glacier. I have never done it, but it is on the top of my to-do list. If you have a car, you are most welcome to join.

3) Ice-Fishing
When: Feb 17-18
Where: Kamloops

Does ice-climbing scare you? Do you like standing at belays freezing? Do ice screws look small and fiddly? If you answered yes to any of these, ice fishing is your sport! Ice fishers use one huge ice screw (auger) that make climbing ice screws look like toys. The grade is as low as it can get and you don't even have to rope in. You get all of the standing at the belay stance fun as ice-climbing, but you actually have a decent chance of catching something! Last, but not least, you should bring something home other than sore muscles from ice fishing.

4) Red Rocks
When: Reading Week
Where: Las Vegas Baby!

Best trip I went on last year!

5) Spear Head Traverse
When: Feb 23-25
Where: Whistler/Blackcomb Area

The Spearhead Traverse is a spectacular horseshoe ski traverse linking Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. It is a committing route that is almost exclusively alpine terrain with few options for retreat in the event of poor weather. Because of its high alpine character, the traverse is usually done in the spring when the weather is better and more reliable (this paragraph was copied directly from the Wiki).

6) Banquet
When: April 4
Where: TBA

Remembering and celebrating the events that made the year. Will be giving out to the best and worst of the VOC. 

V. Trip Reports
1) Red Heather (by Roland)

We went up without incident; there was about a cm of fresh wet snow at the parking lot and it was alternating between blizzard, rain and neither. We skinned up to the Red Heather Shelter and found it quite warm as the wood burning heater was pumping out the heat. Around 3 inches of pretty OK snow at the shelter. We made soup, ate lunch, then we went for one run in the meadows before heading down. Based on the number of falls, Mahdi learned a lot, Ben didn't learn anything (he didn't bring skis), Carolina learned a fair bit but skiing isn't the #1 sport in Panama, Rachel didn't learn much because she already knew how to ski, and Roland didn't learn anything except he's way out of shape and probably has bronchitis and Alpine Lassitude.

2) Squamish - Rock Climbing

Blicker wants everyone to know that the weather on Feb 10 was "sunny, not a cloud in the sky. Great day!" and that you all should have gone climbing with him.
Quote of the Week: "Personally, I'll use all of the help that I can get. It's the skiers choice, there are no rules."
Paul Parker
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UBC Varsity Outdoor Club
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