Document type : vocene
Date : 2014-10-28
Description : VOCene #17 2014
Content :
VOCene # 17: Tuesday, October 28, 2014

In this Issue:
1. Missing Club Tools- Do you have them?
2. AST (Avalanche Skills Training) Courses 
3. VIMFF: Vancouver International Mountain Fill Festival
4. Recent Trip Reports
5. Upcoming Trips
6. Message Board Highlights
7. Ms. Manners

1. Missing Club Tools- Do you have them?

We are missing some club tools that have been used for the Harrison Trail Renovations. Specifically, we are missing several prunes, at least 2 bent shovels and at least 4 cutter mattocks. 

If you know where these tools are or have them yourself, please let Christian Veenstra know (or myself and I can forward the information to him). Thanks!


2. Avalanche Safety Training (AST Courses)
Every year the VOC works with Canada West Mountain School in order to provide its members with discounted rates on avalanche safety courses, with the intent to help students mitigate the risks of backcountry skiing. The courses available to VOC members run from November thru February and in total include four sessions of Avalanche Skills Training I (AST I), and one session of AST II. The dates, details and deadlines for each course may be viewed in the table below. Web links to the CWMS course descriptions may be found here. Please contact Tes at with questions or concerns about experience level. Sign up will take place in the clubroom during gear hours, and full payment is required at time of registration.



3. VIMFF: Vancouver International Mountain Fill Festival

Check out the program for this coming year's Vancouver International Film Festival, running from Wednesday November 12th to Saturday November 15th. Good climbing videos and more! 

Remember that the club will also be screening Reel Rock 9 in January, so if you cannot make these dates or tickets sell out, you will still have an opportunity to see the film on campus in January (and feel free to consider our showing first as well ;) ).


4. Recent Trip Reports

Team Bad Idea Taste South American Canyoning
Ö And it is bittersweet. As per the general case in South America, Iíd spent many hours trying to research these canyons, but the only information is on the tour agenciesí webpages. Now I donít blame them Ė they are looking to excitingly attract customers and it is not in their interest to provide all the technical information. From my perspective, it is difficult as they only have these tiny little blurbs that just tell me the canyon exists, but not any of the beta I need such as access, entry point, length of rappels, presence of anchors, exit strategy, etcÖ Sadly, way more effort goes into researching, accessing, and finding the canyons, then is actually spent in them, but hopefully this report will pave the way for future travelling canyoneers...

Vantage (climbing): Basalt Columns Forever
It is sunset. Steep columns of golden rock rise before you like soldiers prepared for combat. Some of them are broken, crippled. Others stand tall and slender. You look carefully, and notice that in between their folds are little creatures, clambering up the columns, attempting to reach the top. When they crest the top of the cliff, they lower themselves down gracefully on thin cords, just to repeat the ridiculous ritual. Itís a mesmerizing sight. At nightfall they retreat into small nylon shelters nearby, and when a new day dawns they arrive back again, full of energy. Welcome to climbing at Vantage.

Places to Be: Mt. Gandalf and Mt. Aragorn in BCís Tolkien Range
This story doesnít start with an alarm clock; it starts with a mad rush from class. I switch out my school bag for my 60L backpack, my jeans for nylon hiking pants and my Converse for waterproof hiking boots. I run across campus and jump the puddle in front of Walter Gage as Rolandís blue Jeep pulls up to the curb. Four of us stuff our bags into the trunk and squish into the back seat. Introductions are made and we excitedly discuss the upcoming weekend. Apprehension can be heard in everyoneís voices as the weather report calls for rain all weekend. But for now, thatís just a report on our phones, and where we are going, phones donít hold much weight...


5. Upcoming Trips


VOC slideshow: Trips to the Arctic (Ellesmere Island, Iceland, Greenland) ∑ Wednesday, October 29th
Cassandra Elphinstone will give a presentation on the Arctic (Ellesmere Island this summer and Iceland and Greenland three years ago). "The Arctic is a special place; once you see it you will never forget its vast beauty, its spectacular peaks and its endless glaciers. Three years ago during an SOI Arctic (2011) expedition to Iceland, Greenland, and parts of northern Canada I fell in love with the Arctic landscape, its wildlife and its harsh conditions. This summer I had the amazing opportunity to return to the high arctic, this time to Ellesmere Island (a polar desert). After nearly three months of camp life with 24 hour daylight, polar bears, no trees, and mild frostbite in the middle of summer, I was reminded how spectacular the north is!" Starts at 6:30 PM in Buchanan A202.

Climbing Horror Show ∑ Wednesday, October 29th NOTE THE DATE CHANGE!!!
Does the thought of a 20 m run-out above a shaky RP have you break out into a cold sweat? Do you wake up in the middle of the night in a panic after dreaming about your rope cutting in the alpine? Well then this spooky movie night is for you! We will be screening one of the most terrifying mountaineering movies ever made. Touching the Void is the true story of two climbers summitting Siula Grande and the disaster that followed. This event will run from 8:05-10:00 PM in Buchanan A202, right after the slideshow.

Yoga for Mountaineers: Fundraiser for Vancouver Rape Relief and Womenís Shelter (VRRWS) ∑ Thursday, October 30th
Open up those tight hips and strengthen your core! Wishing you were more confident in stemming and high-stepping? Now you can do yoga and a great cause all together! Join the Mountain Goatees, an all-women VOCers fundraiser bowling team (See Facebook page) initiated by Anne Darby, in ending violence against women by supporting Vancouver Rape Relief and Women's Shelter (VRRWS)!This event will run from 6:30-7:45 PM in SWING building (2175 West Mall), Room 407.



Halloween Climbing ∑ Fri. Oct. 31st - Sun. Nov. 2nd- TENTATIVE
Climb in Skaha for Halloween! In theory it will be dry, or at least dry enough to get on some climbs. This won't be an instructional trip. You will need to be self-sufficient or have someone who has agreed to set top ropes for you. Costumes are highly encouraged, and I will offer free beverages to the most creative. There are also some breweries in Penticton (Bad Tattoo and Cannery) in town we could visit in the evenings if the weather isn't ideal for outdoor partying. Pre-trip meeting will be Wednesday, October 29th at 4:00 PM (this time is correct unless indicated) in the clubroom.



MEC Clubs Night ∑ Tuesday, November 4th
Come to the Vancouver Mountain Equipment Co-op for Clubs Night! Here you will be able to get a 10% discount on any regular priced item in the store and be eligible for some raffle prize items. You will have to sign in at a table in order to get a stamp confirming that you are a VOC member. Sign up as committed so we can let MEC know how busy they should expect to be, and we'll see you there! Event runs from 7:00-9:00 PM at MEC on Broadway.

Beacon Search Evening ∑ Wednesday, November 5th 
There will be a beacon search practice at Wreck Beach on Wednesday, November 5th at 6:00 pm. This will be a good opportunity to brush up on you search skills or learn some new ones. We can make the situations as hard or as easy as need be. If you have your own beacon, please bring it. As well, you should bring a tupperware so that you can bury your beacon without it getting sandy. Please sign up, so we know how many people will arrive.

VOC slideshow: Sea cliffs ∑ Wednesday, November 5th
Jeff Mottershead will give a presentation about sea cliffs at 6:30 PM in Buchanan A202. 

Yoga for Climbers: Fundraiser for Vancouver Rape Relief and Womenís Shelter (VRRWS) ∑ Thursday, November 6th
Open up those tight hips and strengthen your core! Wishing you were more confident in stemming and high-stepping? Now you can do yoga and a great cause all together! Join the Mountain Goatees, an all-women VOCers fundraiser bowling team (See Facebook page) initiated by Anne Darby, in ending violence against women by supporting Vancouver Rape Relief and Women's Shelter (VRRWS)!This event will run from 6:30-7:45 PM in SWING building (2175 West Mall), Room 407.



Remembrance Climbing at Smith Rocks ∑ Fri. Nov. 7th - Tue. Nov. 11th
An annual pilgramage to Smith Rocks over the Remembrance Day weekend. It has been a long-standing tradition of the VOC to seek refuge from storm clouds in the guarded southern interior of Oregon. Join us on our journey and you will find your true climbing self over 4 days in Smith Rocks. Pre-trip meeting will be Wednesday, November 5th at 6:00 PM, location TBD.


6. Message Board Highlights

a. Want some gear or other useful items? Check out all of the for sale pages on the message board! Camera, jackets and more; vehicle chains; Car Audio Speakers; Dynafit Titan TF-X; gear and more; Skis and Boots; Ice Tools.

b. Anyone going on some adventure between Nov 17 to Nov 23? A visitor is around looking for something fun to do! She is super awesome, funny, outdoorsy and a high output person with lots of scambling and hiking experience. She is also looking to get on Northern Vancouver Island.

c. DPS Skis pro-deal for 2014-15 season: The pro-motive website/spam isn't the only perk that trip organizers get, there is also a DPS Skis pro-deal that is pretty rad! I've just recieved pricing for this season so I thought I'd post it up here. As before, you need to organize two trips to qualify. If you really want to recieve your skis before ski season is in full swing get on it.

d. Looking for activity ideas during this shoulder season? Check out Debunking Shoulder Season!


7. Ms. Manners
Do you have a question for Ms. Manners? If so, email it to to your friendly neighbourhood VOCene Editor and it'll get forwarded Ms. Manners for review. Remember, there's no such thing as a stupid question, so ask away.


Dear Ms. Manners,

I just finished midterms and am itching to get on a trip this weekend or next, but currently the only scheduled trips are self-sufficient climbing trips and I do not have the skills to attend these trips! What can I do???



Dear Itchy,

You have a few options! One would be to try and find some nice people who are already attending the climbing trips who are willing to baby sit you all day by setting up top ropes, etc., if you at least have belaying knowledge for climbing. If you do not have any knowledge of climbing at all or would just rather do a different activity, then you have an amazing opportunity in your hands! You can either schedule a trip yourself or you can peer pressure a friend to schedule a trip for one of these coming weekends!

It works like this: 
(1) You decide what activity you want to organize (e.g. hiking, surfing in Tofino, kayaking; check out shoulder season suggestions), 
(2) you assess whether you or your friend has the necessary knowledge or equipment to run such a trip (if hiking, the answer is usually yes), 
(3) you post your trip idea on the trip agenda! 

You can make the trip tentative if you wish and gauge interest and driver availability, or you can just jump right in with an official trip and hope for the best (and cancel if you have insufficient cars, etc.). You do not need to have extensive knowledge of many things to lead a trip. There are excellent resources on the VOC wiki to help guide you in leading a trip, and you can ask some of your friendly VOC exec members for advice as well. 

Remember to ensure that you are choosing a trip that is still SAFE given your skill set, however. Do not decide to take ten people up a multi-pitch (bad idea to begin with), especially if you have never climbed before. But bringing people hiking somewhere is generally something anyone can organize. Consider things such as weather conditions, necessary equipment for a day trip vs over night trip, skill level of individuals signed up for your trip (you can check what trips someone has done previously by clicking on their names in the Members Page and looking at their trip history), and how many people you think you can manage. Also check the seasonality of the area you wish to go. For example, some hikes are indicated as having a season that runs from July-September. Do not attempt one of these unless you are prepared for snow and cold.

Best of luck Itchy! I hope something works out for you!

Ms. Manners


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