Category Archives: Blog

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BASE Jumping in Twin Falls, Idaho

by Vince Hempsall, January 10, 2016

marley-base-jumping

Sometimes the story behind the story can be just as interesting. In this case I was researching an article for Kootenay Mountain Culture magazine about tandem BASE jumping (download the PDF here: KMC BASE JUMP ARTICLE) and, when I finally lined up a jump with Sean Chuma, owner of Tandem BASE in Twin Falls, Idaho, I was a bit […]

Recap – Kootenay Climbing Festival 2015

by Vince Hempsall, September 26, 2015

Kootenay Climbing Festival 2015

It’s amazing to think the Kootenay Climbing Festival has entered its fourth year. This past Sunday, September 20, the TAWKROC directors again returned to the natural rock climbing wall behind the Lions Head Pub in Robson, BC, and set up a zipline for the kids, slackline, door prize draw, silent auction, and the always popular […]

Review of the Mountain Hardwear Ozonic 50 OutDry Pack

by Vince Hempsall, September 1, 2015

Mountain Hardwear Ozonic 50 OutDry Pack Review 1

California-based Mountain Hardwear has been around since 1993 and has been responsible for some of the most notable innovations in the outdoor market, namely welded technology in clothing, windows in tent flies and Windstopper Fleece. One of their latest inventions is “OutDry” technology – basically a construction style that “bonds a waterproof-breathable membrane directly to the […]

What’s It Like Helibiking Revelstoke, BC?

by Vince Hempsall, July 25, 2015

helibiking revelstoke 2 wonow media

“Leonardo da Vinci sketched the first helicopter design in the late 1400s. Three hundred years later Comte Mede de Sivrac of France invented the celerifere, the precursor to the modern-day bicycle. Then, in July 2015, a Revelstoke-based company threw the two vehicles together and brought heli-biking to the masses. Selkirk-Tangiers has spent almost 40 years […]

I Saw a Dinosaur Then Wrote This Story

by Vince Hempsall, June 14, 2015

kootenay-sturgeon-wonow-media

“Big fish do weird things to people. And by big fish I mean really big fish. They affect some part of our limbic brain and account for the bordering on manic popularity of Shark Week, River Monsters and Jaws(not so sure about this one, how about how people google giant catfish wrangling (magazines or movies?). […]

Riverside Crag Rock Guide Updates

by Vince Hempsall, June 10, 2015

Riverside Crag Topo Ymir BC

This east-facing crag boasts a great view of the Salmo River in a tranquil setting away from traffic. It is located in the woods across the highway from the Hall Siding climbing area. (See page 76 of the West Kootenay Rock Guide.) To access it, though, you must take an earlier turn-off. About 800 metres […]

Review of the Julbo Classic Vermont Sunglasses

by Vince Hempsall, June 4, 2015

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I had never even seen a glacier when I first donned a pair of Julbos in the 1980s. Sunglasses have come a long way since then but I was pleasantly surprised to learn that, for its 125th anniversary, the France-based company relaunched its classic Vermont mountaineering glasses. Founded by Jules Baud, who originally made goggles […]

Polished Wall Rock Guide Updates

by Vince Hempsall, May 27, 2015

polished wall topo wonow media

Polished Wall is located at Kinnaird Bluffs in Castlegar, British Columbia. Follow the trail up and to the left (North) from Open Book Wall (page 29 of the West Kootenay Rock Guide). It’s an excellent wall for beginner sport and trad climbers although it’s important to note that the anchors are not easily accessible from […]

Review of the Black Diamond Nitro 22 Backpack

by Vince Hempsall, May 15, 2015

Black Diamond Nitro 22 wonow media

Utah-based Black Diamond has no shortage of backpack offerings. In fact, the company makes about 70 different kinds of packs and that doesn’t include the Gregory line of backpacks, which parent company Black Diamond Inc. owns. The new Nitro line (which comes in a 22L and 26L versions) is one of the smallest they make […]