Jeremy Hanke gets some air.

Riding high, with Mountain Stash Adventures

Pro-snowmobilers Rob Alford and Jeremy Hanke teamed up to form Mountain Stash Adventures, which aims to change face of snowmobile guiding

Rob Alford and Jeremy Hanke are accomlished snowmobilers. They’re sponsored, they do product testing and they’ve appeared in ads and movies. Hanke is a trained avalanche professional while Alford is a talented photographer. Alford owns a lodge at the base of Mount Mackenzie while Hanke owns Soul Rides, an avalanche education company.

Now they’ve started up Mountain Stash Adventures together, a new business that aims to combine their talents to create a new riding experience in Revelstoke.

“I feel like we bring a lot to the table as far as the skills training goes and the marketability that we have to try to lead the industry out into a safe culture,” Hanke told me when I met him and Alford for a beer at the River City Pub following a day of riding. “I’m solely focused on that.”

MSA has several components right now. The big one is the Avalanche Skill Training course being offered out of Alford’s Mt. Mackenzie Log Chalet, with Hanke doing the teaching.

Beyond that, they’ve started up a website featuring Alford’s photography, videos, and avalanche education tips. One video shows a rider getting caught in a slide, only to be dug out by his companions. Another is about the gear to bring with you in the backcountry.

“I’m blogging about avalanche conditions and Rob is blogging about riding conditions and weather,” said Hanke.

Both Alford and Hanke started snowmobiling as a way of accessing the backcountry to ski and snowboard, respectively. Their stories are similar: they started out as pro riders, took up snowmobiling as a way of reaching more terrain and eventually started snowmobiling full-time. They’ve been riding together for about 10 years.

“It’s hard to find people you trust to ride with in the backcountry and me and Rob and the groups we ride with get along well and have good skills so we keep that tight knit group,” said Hanke.

MSA is in its infancy but the duo has big plans for it. Its website has five sections at the bottom right now but only two – the lodge and the avalanche education – are active. The other three are filming, riding clinics and big mountain riding adventure.

For the first, the duo plan on helping film crews who are coming to Revelstoke obtain permits and provide guiding work (they helped Brain Farm Cinema with The Art of Flight). For the second, they are looking to partner up with the Revelstoke Snowmobile Club to offer riding clinics.

It’s the last link, the riding adventures, where MSA perhaps holds its greatest promise.

“Historically snowmobiling doesn’t have a real strong snowmobile operators’ association or guiding standard,” said Hanke. “As I go through the program I’m on right now with the CAA taking my avalanche Level 2, we look forward to developing our business and working with the commercial operators association and developing a guiding standard that works in the backcountry.”

“There’s no ACMG (Association of Canadian Mountain Guides) for snowmobiling,” I remarked.

Hanke replied that he and Alford were working with Eagle Pass Heli-Skiing to develop a guiding program under its curriculum and that reaches its standards.

“It can be a real industry leading thing,” Hanke said. “Big mountain snowmobiling is really in its infancy. The guiding that was there before was a fine standard but I think its time to move forward at this point and create a structured guiding association.”

Even with recent gains being made by the snowmobiling community with regards to avalanche education, Alford and Hanke still feel there’s a lot to be learned.

Hanke started working with the CAA after getting caught in a class three avalanche and has helped develop snowmobiling-specific programs.

With Mountain Stash Adventures, he and Alford are hoping to take it to another level and take the snowmobiling community another step towards safe mountain riding.

“It’s time to start leading by example and showing what we do to protect ourselves,” said Hanke. “I really thing the snowmobile community is on board and headed in the right direction.”

For more, visit Mountain Stash Adventure’s website at www.msadventures.ca.

 

Just Posted

Revelstoke council to hear first proposed cannabis store application

Starbuds would be located at 109 Connaught Ave.

Revelstoke father and daughter venture abroad to teach English

Columbia is trying to increase the number of English speakers

Cost of propane decreasing for FortisBC customers in Revelstoke

Propane will decrease to its lowest rate in two years

Winter logging planned near Revelstoke due to fir beetle

Woodlot 1834 is harvesting near Flowdown trail in Mt. McPherson area

It’s the last day to vote in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots must now be dropped off in person to meet the deadline of 4:30 p.m.

VIDEO: This B.C. school leads country in vaccine donations to UNICEF

Federally funded Kids Boost Immunity uses quizzes to earn vaccinations

UPDATE: Hedley residents will be without water for at least one week

Elevated levels of coliform and arsenic leave small town dry

Boeser scores 3, Pettersson has 5 points as Canucks hammer Blues

Vancouver picks up impressive 6-1 win in St. Louis

Cold case files: Murdered woman still unidentified after 44 years

Penticton RCMP releasing info on historical missing person and found human remains investigations

Okanagan Valley to see snow tonight

Environment Canada is calling for two-to-four centimetres of snow from Penticton to Salmon Arm

B.C. police stop drunk driver who offered up burger instead of ID

Roadblock checks over the weekend found at least two other impaired drivers

Being vegan during the holidays just got a little bit better

Cook up these delicious options during the holidays

In Canada, the term ‘nationalism’ doesn’t seem to have a bad rap. Here’s why

Data suggest that Canadians don’t see the concept of nationalism the way people do in the United States

Update: Sicamous and Tumbler Ridge neck and neck in the Sled Town Showdown

Both communities in the final round have amassed over 10,000 votes

Most Read