Document type : vocene
Date : 2016-01-19
Description : VOCene #30 2016
Content :
Varsity Outdoor Club
VOCene #30, Jan 19 2015

** In This Issue:

** Special Features
* Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grant
* Journal Submissions
* Tele-School: Call for Instructors

** Upcoming Trips

** Message Board Highlights

** Ms. Manners

** Special Features
* Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grant

Neil Mackenzie was one of the VOC's most talented members, and one of its most enthusiastic and capable teachers, until his tragic death in January 2015 on Mount Joffre with Stephanie Grothe and Elena Cernicka. To preserve and honor Neil Mackenzie's memory, Neil Mackenzie's parents and the VOC are working together to provide a grant for any VOCer planning really cool outdoors shenanigans somewhere in the world. The preference is for climbing in Scotland, but any self-propelled outdoors adventure which you couldn't do without this grant is fair game. If you have a big idea for a trip somewhere in the world, but particularly in Scotland, you might want to apply for this grant. Full details are here:
( . Deadline for submissions is January 29, 2016.
* Journal Submissions

We are now accepting submissions for the yearly VOC Journal. The deadline is (tentatively) Feb 1, so if you've had any crazy VOC-related adventures, now's the time to immortalize them in text.
* Call for Tele-School Instructors

Calling all experienced telemark lovers!
The VOC needs YOU!

I'm organising 2016's telemark ski school on 23rd January at Mt. Seymour and of course we need instructors! If you can help out please sign up as an instructor on the Wiki: [ ( ]
As an instructor, you're pass will be paid for by your mentees and you'll have the gratitude and love of the VOC. As you can see on the Wiki there are different levels of ability.
Trip page: [ ( ]

Many thanks!

** Upcoming Trips

Ice Climbing trip, date to be fixed · Mon. Jan. 4th - Wed. Jan. 20th (
Hi all,
I'm looking for some to go ice climb with any day any time until the 21th of january. I'm leaving Canada at this date and i'm pretty pissed off not having touch the ice so far and I really deeply wanna do that before leaving.
I also can lead in WI4 or WI4+, and i'm confident with leading a rope over 4-5-6 pitches. I also might have a car for going either in the rockies either to Pemberton but as i don't really know the area, if someone knows more, i follow!

Concerning the date, i put a random date because as i finished my internship i can be available any time any days until the 21th of Jan.
My only concern is the gear I couldn't bring from France. I dont have any ice screw and ice axes but i'm ok for the rest with the help of the VOC gear.
If anyone is interested Let me know!

Run Forrest Run! · Fri. Jan. 8th - Sun. Jan. 31st (
This is not your usual VOC trip but an ongoing "adventure" into the deep dark forest of the Pacific Spirit Park. (will renew the trip every month)
When: every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Sundays starting Friday (Jan. 8).
Meeting point: University Blvd. + Acadia Rd. (locations will be flexible on weekends)
Time: 7:30 a.m. (Sundays @ 8)
You can drop-in when you like. We jump into puddles. Work up a good sweat. Get lost sometimes. Would love you to join!!


Slideshow: Learning to Mountaineer in the French and Austrian Alps, Jake Jones · Wednesday, January 20th (
Interested in exciting travel and alpine adventure?  Love natural beauty?  Keen to explore above and beyond the crag and conquer the high mountains?  You need to mountaineer!

Last summer I (Jake Jones) learnt the skills needed to survive in the alpine environment in the French and Austrian Alps.  In this presentation I'll share my adventures (the awesome, the exciting and the stupid), give tips on getting into mountaineering, offer advice for finding funding and subsidized  courses, and spread the stoke for alpinism!

See you there!

Location: ESB (Earth and Ocean Sciences) 2012
Time: 7:00 PM
Covert beverage drinking encouraged.


Winter Longhike 2016 (Snow Caves) · Sat. Jan. 23rd - Sun. Jan. 24th (


Winter Longhike is coming up!

This is an introductory trip for winter camping. We'll be a large group of keen people that want to experience a totally new face of the white backcountry.

We'll be having great fun and learning new skills such as building our very own snow shelter ( (or if you're ambitious enough, a snow castle). There will be a prize for the most elaborate snow-cave :D

Other activities likely to happen include (but are not limited to):
* Backcountry food cook-off
* Sing-alongs
* Great skiing on Sunday


This is a beginner friendly trip and if you've never seen snow you're more than welcome to join. This is trip is also, ski-, snowboard-, and snowshoe-friendly.

Although beginner friendly and relatively easy, do not under estimate Winter Longhike - it is still a trip to a backcountry location where your survival depends on your actions and equipment. Due to the massive size of the group you will not be micro-managed - you are responsible for your own safety and actions; this especially includes asking for help. If you have some common sense and can follow simple instructions, this should not be a problem. There will be plenty of experienced people around that will be happy to help you if you ask them, but there won't be assigned instructors.

You should form smaller sub groups (easiest is with the rest of the people in your car) and look out for each other; this will be sorted out at the pre-trip meeting so have no fear.

Check out the wiki page ( for more information and post any questions on themessage board (,115747) .

Telemark Ski School 2016 · Sunday, January 24th (

CHANGED DATE to Sunday 24th due to postponed Winter Long Hike to Sat 23rd!!!

Wish that you had a chance to learn how to tele ski in a controlled environment, with a teacher and without a giant pack on your back? Do you know the basics but want to hone those mad skills with the help of someone who can *actually* ski?  Do you want a chance to show off your beautiful style while imparting knowledge to others?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions than the VOC Tele-School is the trip for you!  This will be a one day instructional even held at the Seymour Mountain resort on the North Shore.  Groups will be organized with a teacher based on skill levels.  These groups will include, 1) 'I have never skied before', 2) 'I can downhill ski, but dont understand how to bend my knees', 3) 'I know the basics but would like to be better', and 4)  'I am an awesome skier and shouldn't be at school'.

The tickets will be $57 - a bargain for a full day of skiing with 4:1 instruction!  Plus it's super easy to transit to N. Shore.

We will meet at the Guest Services by the Upper Parking lot at 9:45am.

We will also hopefully be offering discount tickets for people who just want to do some cheaper skiing on Seymour that day.

INSTRUCTORS NEEDED!!!  If happy to instruct please sign up on the wiki:

Here's the instructor messageboard:,115628

Slideshow: Bigger Than Us - Vertical adventures in unlikely places, Tim Howard · Wednesday, January 27th (

Whether you just come out of a pre-trip meeting or love socializing, come join us for a wonderful slideshow presentation by Tim Howard, amazing photographer.

Title: Bigger Than Us - Vertical adventures in unlikely places

Tales of epics, shenanigans and exotic places from 10 years climbing and photographing around the world. Locations may include Morocco's Atlas Mountains, big routes in Mexico, and wild parts of Australia. This slide show is guaranteed to make you quit whatever you're doing and go on an adventure!

Location: ESB (Earth and Ocean Sciences) Room 2012

Time: 7:30 PM
( Takin' the Leap [Lead Climbing School] · Thursday, January 28th (

Do you want to take the leap into Lead Climbing?

This is an evening school held in The Aviary where you'll learn the neccesary skills to take your climbing to the next level. It will also include some prep work to learn some theory to help you become a better lead climber.

The pre-requisite skills are you should have are top-rope belaying, and top-rope climbing experience (Rock 1).

Ideally you should have taken Rock 2 on anchor building, cleaning and rapelling.

* New gear for lead climbing
* Communication
* Lead belaying
* Lead climbing
* Developing your 'Lead Head'
* Anchors Review (time permitting)


The 'Going' list will be choosen randomly from 'interested' list on Jan 21st.

We're good on instructors for now, but let me/Corey know if you want to run this in the future.
Neil Mackenzie Adventure Grant 2016 · Friday, January 29th (

It is 7am, late November and the sun hasn't quite crested over the horizon. The ground is covered in a thin film of frost. The climbing party arrives at the base of the climb, and its members are questioning whether they should wait a bit for the temperature to rise and the rock to warm before starting the ascent. But in Neil Mackenzie's mind, there is no doubt about it - after all there is rock to be climbed, isn't there? So he leads up a thin crack and begins placing protection as he ascends. Halfway up, he reaches the crux and slows down. He yells down hesitantly to his shivering belayer: "I can't quite feel my fingers ... It's pretty chilly up here! Eeh well, I suppose I've got no other choice but to continue up!". And so he does ...

Neil Mackenzie had a true passion for the outdoors and always had an eye out for adventure, whether it was skiing, surfing or climbing. The more obscure an alpine objective was, the greater it tickled his enthusiasm. From his youth's stomping grounds in the Scottish Highlands, he expanded outwards exploring the alpine regions of Europe, North America and Japan. On all of these trips he brought with him his infectious enthusiasm, his watchful eye and of course, a dram of Scotch whisky! When the going was difficult, Neil invariably took up the sharp end of the rope and would courageously find a passage to safety. He had dreams of exploring the more endless glaciated wilderness of BC's Coast Range for years to come. He inspired adventure wherever he went.

- Elliott Skierszkan

This award is founded in the memory of our past VOC member Neil Mackenzie. Three awards of up to $1500 will be awarded to individuals or members of a party to pursue an adventure in 2016/2017. The first award recipients will be presented at the end of year banquet in March 2016. Applications are open to members of the VOC to get outdoors and do something amazing.

More details and application forms can be found on the wiki page. (


Burns 'n' Turns · Fri. Jan. 29th - Sun. Jan. 31st (
Don't miss this beginner friendly ski weekend in the tranquility of the mountains. With haggis, music and crude scotch poetry!
The location this year is Mount Brew near Whistler. Brew Hut is a 12 km trek from the trailhead, with an elevation gain of 1244m. A potluck at the hut on Saturday will be followed by an evening of music.  To the musically inclined: please bring your instruments.
Brew Hut sleeps up to 16, and the rest of us will overnight in quinzhees or tents.
Like last year, we'll make a toast to our dear friends Neil, Steffi and Elena, who passed away last January 11th.

Bastard of Frost [Ice Climbing] · Sat. Jan. 30th - Sun. Jan. 31st (

Winter is coming...

We're going on the last weekend of January to (likely) Marble Canyon, outside of Lillooet. Although it’s a ~5 hour drive, Marble Canyon is ideal for learning to climb ice, as the ice reliably forms and top-ropes can be set up with minimal gear. We can also car camp for free and with fires, just a quick 10 minute walk away from the ice! Depending on people’s wishes, we will leave either Friday afternoon, or Saturday morning.

This trip is mostly beginner friendly. You don’t have to know how to climb ice, but camping experience is a necessity, and winter camping experience will help. It will be cold! It is important that everyone brings the right stuff, but, as we will be car camping, I encourage you to bring all of the warm things; two years ago, it was -20 C at night for Daughter of Ice!

At the pre-trip, we will discuss gear, vehicles, and tent/ food groups. You must know how to belay top rope and be experienced TR climber (indoors is OK). I'll try to take people who aren't going on Daughters of Ice but it will be a smaller trip of ~2 cars. Experienced people coming would be great to help out =D I'll need a few more knowledgeable hands. If you have done a Workhike or do one before the pre-trip it'll be favorable to getting on the trip.

Disclaimer: we are not certified guides, just some guy who claims he knows what he's doing. Ice climbing is dangerous, and hazards include falling ice, climbing falls, sharp objects, and the cold.

Ask questions, discuss gear, or spread stoke on the message boards  =D

** Message Board Highlights
-We've got two AST1 spots (,116166) available!

** Ms Manners
Ms Manners is the VOC's resident expert on mountaineering and outdoors etiquette, and answers questions from VOCers once a week in her advice column, here. Do you have a question for Ms Manners? Email the VOCene editor and it will be forwarded on to Ms Manners, with a reply posted the following week.

Hey Ms Manners,

I want to go on some more skiing trips, maybe even lead one. I'm not that experienced though. Is this a problem?

Stoked to Ski

Hey Stoked,

Short answer is yes, absolutely. We even have a system for that now! We can set you up with a more experienced person(s) willing to take on the responsibilities of leading the trip as long as someone else is willing to deal with all of the faff of organizing. Doing a small trip for one carload or two (4-8 people) is generally pretty low-key.

Here's the message board thread. (,113227)

Get stoked and get out there,
Ms Manners


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