Read the full story in the July 12 edition of The Interior News to read more on Len’s first climb on this journey and more.
Smithers mountaineer Len Vanderstar is the first Canadian to climb the highest point in every province and territory in Canada.
Which also makes him the third person in the world, after two Americans.
The adventure began in 2006 when the Summits of Canada Expedition group tackled Alberta’s Mount Columbia.
A very modest Vanderstar spoke about being the first Canadian to climb the tallest point in each province and territory.
“It’s nice, but it was not something we were striving to do, it just happened coincidentally,” he said.
“We have different teammates depending on the mountain, but yes I’ve been on every one of those expeditions … as a result I am the first Canadian to do this, it’s never been done before by a Canadian … which is kind of nice, but that really was not the objective.”
According to Vanderstar, there’s a lot of planning that goes in to a climb.
“It’s logistics that can be quite complicated. This last climb we did, we had lots of starts and stops and it was two years planning alone for this expedition. The mountain’s always there. You don’t go up there and bag a mountain, the mountain allows you to get up there or it doesn’t, so the most complicated and complex situation really is the weather. It’s a driving parameter. We’ve been turned down on expeditions in July by being snowed out or rained out,” he said.
As an adventurous teenager, Vanderstar didn’t start doing major mountain climbing until he was in university. It’s something he enjoys to this day.
The 11-year quest was more than just an adventure, it was also an opportunity to promote Canada’s diverse geography and culture.
“This journey has always been about Canadian and self-discovery, sharing the country’s diverse geography with students and promoting health and fitness through adventure activities,” Vanderstar said.