A Lynn Valley dad has launched a new business to keep adventurers safer in the mountains – across Canada.
National issue, local solution
The recently launched All Adventure aims to make essential safety equipment for backcountry adventures just a click away.
“Living in Lynn Valley, when you hear the helicopter go overhead at first light you think ‘Wow, someone has had a bad night out there’ and you hope they are okay,” said All Adventure founder Ryan Reilly. “And the reality is: it doesn’t take long to get out of cell coverage. You head north out of Lynn Headwaters and within a few minutes you have no cell coverage. That can be nice – to be disconnected and in nature but if something does go wrong it can get really tricky.
“My goal is to prevent a bad situation from getting worse.”
All Adventure is a personal locator beacon (PLB) rental company. While frequent users of the backcountry should have their own device, there are plenty of people who may need it one once a year or once every couple of years, who can’t or won’t make the investment, which is where All Adventure comes in. At $50 for three days and $80 for a week – all in – it’s a no brainer.
“The ability to call for help is really powerful,” said Reilly. “What we see on the North Shore, is when people are in trouble, they get themselves deeper into trouble trying to get cell coverage – trying to climb a nearby peak to get a few bars. Without a tool it is really hard to do.
“Most times everything goes well and you come home but there are times that things go wrong and it is really nice to have a safety device with you. Our rentals are for people, like a trail runner and who does the Lynn Loop and runs with friends, but once or twice a year they do something a little bit crazier, like going off to do Haynes Valley. You can do the whole trail and not see anyone until you reach Grouse.”
As passionate outdoor athlete and a dad himself, Reilly feels the goal of any adventure is to get home safe. As All Adventure was in its early stages, one news story from 2019 hit a little too close to home and reassured Reilly he had a good idea.
“The one that stands out is the incident on Burke Mountain, a visitor from Georgia, was hiking to go fishing with his children and they ran into trouble. The dad made the decision to leave his very young children overnight and tried to hike higher to get cell coverage. It did end well and everyone was safe,” he said. “Those children were the same age as my kids and I think of that choice to make as a father in an incredibly tense situation and all it would have taken was sending one message.”
The All Adventure system
More than just a typical emergency beacon the Garmin In Reach Mini’s that All Adventure rents offers two-way communication. The feature makes meeting up with groups and point-to-point pick ups for trips like the West Coast trail easy.
“We want to make it a simple process,” said Reilly. “It’s for anyone who is going beyond their norm. It’s people who are off to do something exciting and are looking for a challenge and need to take this extra step to be safe.”
With All Adventure handling the shipping and accounts it is as easy as getting a package in the mail. When users are finished they mail the system back in a pre-paid envelope at any Canada Post box. They also have users review the ten essentials and offer links to other resources like AdventureSmart.
“The North Shore is relatively unique in the world and it’s a little deceptive that you can take a city bus to a trailhead and have wilderness that stretches thousands of kilometres. It’s incredible,” he said, adding he wants to make it just as easy to do it safely.
If you were lucky enough to score a ticket to the Banff Centre Mountain Film Fest showing Nov. 29 at Centennial Theatre – All Adventure will be there to answer any questions.