13th Bugaboos Teens Climbing Camp

For the past two years, the dreaded virus forced an abbreviated version of the Bugaboos teen climbing camp to be based out of Invermere instead. We did day trips to the Rockies and Purcells which involved a lot of driving.

With covid restrictions being lifted at the Kain Hut, this, our 13th annual program hosted by the CKCS based in Wilmer, was back in the “Bugs” July 22-24. 

Kain Memorial Route on Mt Aeneas

Each time we’ve short-roped a team of Kain Teens participants along an exposed cockscomb ridge in the Pedley pass area, Kirk Mauthner, Tim McAllister and i have admired an unclimbed line across the way on a sub peak of Mt Aeneas that begins just above the tarn and arches up the entire spine of the crag. 

Yesterday Kirk and i put up the “Kain Memorial" route in honour of the ACC’s first mountain guide, Conrad Kain, who was based here in Wilmer until his death in 1934. 

Teens Climbing Program 2021

"The first day was difficult for me, but I learned a lot about climbing and safety in general. I am so glad I had the opportunity to do this camp and would greatly encourage others to do it as well. Overall, this camp took me out of my comfort zone and made me a more confident person.” 

Those words, proffered by 14 year old Cam Hofer, encourage me and the directors of the Conrad Kain Society to continue promoting the providence of pioneer mountain guide Conrad Kain by offering our annual free-of-charge three day climbing camp aimed at local teens.

Teens Climbing Program 2020

Since 2009 the Conrad Kain Centennial Society has promoted the legacy of Conrad Kain by offering a free-of-charge three day camp aimed at exposing teens to the rich mountaineering history in the region.

The camp is run annually, and supported by various organizations (including the Alpine Club of Canada) in order to keep it free-of-charge. Chairman Pat Morrow, climber and photographer, has hosted successful ACC camps in the past and continues to stoke the fire by getting others out and into the big hills, despite complications surrounding Covid.

2019 Bugaboos Teens Climbing Camp

Bookended by a drenching hike to the alpine hut, and a heart-stopping dip in a snow-rimmed tarn, the 11th annual Bugaboos Teens climbing camp turned out to be one of the best.

So much so that Jona Craig was moved to write, “Thank you so much for this amazing trip! The guides were great and I met some really cool people. I learned a lot and had a great time in the mountains.” 

This year, six of the 10 participants (grades 10 – 12) hailed from Kimberley, one from Cranbrook, three from Golden, and alas, none from Invermere where the program originates.