David Lussier and Vince Hempsall (right) atop Gimli Peak in the Valhalla mountains late last month.

Pair make history on Gimli

Two Nelson adventurers have entered the history books as the first people to complete a self-propelled adventure to the summit of Gimli Peak

Two Nelson adventurers have entered the history books by becoming the first people to complete a self-propelled adventure to the summit of Gimli Peak in the Valhalla Mountain Range and back again in under 24 hours.

David Lussier and Vince Hempsall bicycled from Nelson to the parking lot of Gimli Peak in the Valhalla Mountains, hiked to the base of the classic South Ridge route, rock climbed it and then descended back to the parking lot before returning by bike to Nelson. The distances travelled included 172 km on bikes (about 90 of those were on gravel logging roads), four kilometres of hiking and descending and 345 metres of rock climbing.

The biking portion of the day was definitely the biggest challenge as the pair spent a total of 12 hours on their hard-tail, hybrid bikes carrying everything they needed for the adventure in backpacks and panniers. It took them five hours to reach the base of Bannock Burn Road and another two hours to bike the last eight kilometres to the Gimli parking lot.

“The logging roads were difficult because they were in washboard condition after a summer’s worth of use,” Hempsall says. “In fact, the scariest part of the trip wasn’t the rock climbing, but biking the highway at night with the traffic.”

Luckily the weather conditions were perfect. They had originally planned to depart on August 29, but a storm rolled through and they were delayed. Instead they set off at 3 a.m. on August 31 under a blue moon and the day proved to be cool in the alpine and partly cloudy. They returned under clear skies and a full moon.

Other than one flat tire, there were no mishaps during the adventure. In fact, the pair probably set a record for the fastest two-man ascent of the South Ridge route, completing it in just 2.5 hours. (It normally takes a team five to six hours to gain the summit.)

Lussier and Hempsall  undertook the adventure for three reasons: to celebrate their 40th birthdays and the 40th anniversary of the first ascent of the South Ridge route, and to bring awareness to the Association of West Kootenay Rock Climbers, an organization responsible for developing and maintaining outdoor rock climbing routes.

For more information, log on to tawkroc.org.

 

Just Posted

Kootenay-Columbia candidates attend Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum

About 120 people attended the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum on Oct. 16 at the Prince Charles Theatre.

Nelson hazardous waste recycling depot opens

New depot will collect oil and household hazardous waste

Inquest planned in death of Peter de Groot

It’s been five years since the Slocan man was shot by RCMP

1919: Prince of Wales, governor general visit Nelson

Greg Scott on events in Nelson a century ago

Fashion Fridays: 5 things to remove from your closet

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Canucks beat Stanley Cup champs 4-3 in a shootout

Leivo nets winner, Vancouver dumps St. Louis for fourth straight win

‘The more you test, the more you find’: Beef recalls a sign of success, experts say

Despite appearances, experts say a recent rise in major recalls is not a sign of food supply problems

Scholars say religious vaccine objections can’t be traced to Biblical sources

Vaccinations are a requirement to attend class in Ontario and New Brunswick, while B.C. launched a demand this fall

ELECTION 2019: How would the major parties address Canada’s housing crisis?

Promises include speculation taxes, more affordable housing, and declaring housing a human right

Two years later, City of Fernie remembers

Oct. 17, 2019 marks two years since the tragic ammonia leak at Fernie Memorial Arena

Japanese buyer expands wood pellet contract with B.C.’s Pinnacle

Mitsui and Co. increases contract with Interior energy producer

Most Read