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Rocky Mountain Ramblers Association


March 2, 1964, marked the tenth anniversary of the Rocky Mountain Ramblers Association and to celebrate, the Club rented the Rosedale Community Hall, hired caterers and put on a gala do. Bob Baxter provided the music and Herman Swarte organized games and trick dances, including a grand march. Five first year members were present: John Hickey, Larry Owens, Torn Moffat and Sandy and Nancy Vair. Two others, Ted de Waal and Laurie Portigal, drove down from Edmonton. In all, 40 members and guests attended. After the party broke up about 2 a.m., Wally Drew stayed another hour trying to dispose of the remaining food while cleaning up.

Another Rambler marriage graced the year that of Dieter Mohr and Bonnie Whittington on February 15. Other events included the end of the 10 year affiliation with the Ramblers Association of England, the purchase of a club climbing rope and the club's first rock climbing school. Loan of the rope was only to club members at the discretion of Ted de Waal and Dieter Mohr. The rock climbing school was conducted by Ted on the cliff band at Mt. Yamnuska.

Trips that year included a backpack to Mystic Lake led by Don Hopkinson; and ascent of Mt. Cory by Ted de Waal (leader), Daphne Smith, Kay Kittle and Hugh Peck; and the club's first ascent of Mt. Aylmer. Out of the ten who camped Saturday night between Lake Minnewanka and the Aylmer Fire Lookout, Hugh Peck (leader), Daphne Smith, Alastair Sinclair and Garry (last name not known) got up at 5 a.m. and left camp at 6:40 for the climb to the summit of Mt. Aylmer for spectacular views.

Tom Thurston drove down from Edmonton to lead a fall colour trip up Misty Basin to the top of the pass above Burns Mine and on the Thanksgiving weekend eight Ramblers explored new country in the Nordegg area. On the latter trip, Cedric Hitchon and his passengers got quite a shock when a small airplane landed on the David Thompson Highway near their car.

Over the summer, both Wally Drew, Chairman, and Don Hopkinson, Vice Chairman, were out of town, so veteran Sandy Vair acted as Chairman. By September the club had 62 members, a new record, and 47 people - also a record turn out - attended the A.G.M. on October 24. Gold pins were awarded to Henk Oliemans and Tom Thurston, and a silver pin to Lillian Garland, and a new executive was elected: Chairman, Wally Drew; Vice-Chairman, Alastair Sinclair; Treasurer, Bob Baxter; Secretary, Pam Turner; and Mernbers-at-large, Kay Kittle, Torn Thurston, Sandy Vair and Ron Bowle. Subsequently, Daphne Smith, Hugh Peck, Stuart Lunn and Henk Oliemans were added to round out the large executive. Again Bob Baxter was given an honorary membership.

For 33 Ramblers and friends the transition from 1964 to 1965 was the New Years Eve party at Rolf Pallat's house. Robin Dayies cooked the turkey while Ted de Waal and Bob Baxter guided us in games.


On a ski trip to Turner Valley ski hill, January 9, five Ramblers experienced the vagaries of the foothills chinook. It was 23°F below zero in Calgary when we left and the same at the bottom of the hill. But at the top of the hill, it was above freezing. Each time we skied down the hill, we entered the cold air and left it when we climbed back up, just as abruptly as going in and out of a house. The boundary between the two air masses gradually moved down the hill so that by the end of the day it was well above freezing even in the valley. Back in Calgary it was still below 0°F.

A ski tour to Moose Mountain in March also encountered temperatures of 24°F below at the bottom of the mountain and 28° above higher up. The big ski trip of the 1964-65 season was an overnight backpack to Shadow Lake that turned into an ordeal and is described in Memorable trips. Lift skiing was the dominant activity that winter though.

Another "Memorable Trip" was a weekend backpack to Fortress Lake. Fall colour trips are always popular with Ramblers and Wally Drew's aspen hike west of Priddis that year was no exception. A record 27 turned out.

After the snows came in December, Wilf Twelker lead the first of his many trips to Cirque Mountain and Observation Peak. On one of these, as on many other trips, Tommy "fix-it" Thurston came to the rescue of those with binding breakdowns. Wally Drew led a Christmas ski trip to Todd Mountain, B.C.

Late in the summer of 1965, Bob Baxter moved his bookstore from 211-16 Avenue, N.W. into larger quarters at 1026A - 16th Avenue. N.W. The move was prompted also by the fact that the former building was condemned. A number of us in the Ramblers helped move all of the Rambers stuff plus many carloads of dusty books to the new store.

For many years club leaders had the burdensome task of collecting guest fees and insurance fees from nonmembers who came on their trips. This policy was finally abolished in late 1965. Also during the year, membership had grown to 81 and two more Ramblers couples were married: Robin Davies and Cedric Hitchon on May 15 and Ruth Knights and Wilf Twelker on October 22.

54 Ramblers and 20 guests attended the A.G.M. on Saturday, October 16, 1965. The meeting was preceded by a banquet of roast beef or turkey for $2.50 per person. A silver pin was awarded to Hugh Peck and a gold pin to Pam Turner. The elections proved to be more complicated than in any other year. Rolf Pallat and Alastair Sinclair were nominated for the position of Chairman and the vote came out a tie. After some discussion we voted again and Rolf was elected. Alastair was re-elected Vice-Chairman. Our new Secretary was Liz O'Shea. Bob Baxter was re-elected Treasurer. Art Borron, Stephanle Jones, Tom Thurston and Sandy Vair were elected Members-at-large. Subsequently, the executive was rounded out by adding Henk Oliemans, Wally Drew, John Hassett and Betty Lewington.