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Kaf Adventures


Original Post
Jeffrey K · · Seattle, WA · Joined Apr 2018 · Points: 0

Hey everyone!

I just thought it worthwhile to mention that I had a FANTASTIC intermediate climbing course with Kaf adventures over the weekend and highly recommend them. I've taken a lot of different courses for different things over the years but I've never been as impressed as I was with Kaf. It was 1 instructor for 3 students and he did an awesome job managing the course, especially as the other 2 were more experienced and looking for different things than I was. I came into it with no outdoor experience and came out with a great understanding of lead climbing, anchors and rappelling. 

Has anyone else had an experience with them?

Brian Campbell · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2012 · Points: 15

I'm really glad to hear you had a good experience. KAF has a bad reputation for unethical guiding practices. Unless I'm mistaken, either KAF or the owner has been officially cited for illegal guiding in Leavenworth. It is pretty difficult to actually get caught doing something illegal guiding. What that usually means is that if you get caught once you probably broke the law many, many times. I genuinely hope that KAF ha cleaned up their act and they are offering legitimately good products.

Eric Thompson · · Mountlake Terrace wa · Joined Mar 2012 · Points: 125

That's so interesting Brian.  Who caught them?  The guide police?  Did they take him to guide jail? Mick is a solid person and Kaf doesn't have a bad reputation.  If you're the type of person that pays for instruction KAF isn't a bad place to get it.  I'm not friends with anyone there.  

Brian Campbell · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2012 · Points: 15
Eric Thompson wrote: That's so interesting Brian.  Who caught them?  The guide police?  Did they take him to guide jail? Mick is a solid person and Kaf doesn't have a bad reputation.  If you're the type of person that pays for instruction KAF isn't a bad place to get it.  I'm not friends with anyone there.  
I bet some form of Federal Law Enforcement caught them. It seems more likely that they were on federal land than state land. I do not know what the punishment was/is for breaking whatever the law is that they broke but I doubt anyone went to jail. This is pure speculation, but I bet there was a fine and a promise to never do it again.
Ryan Dubberly · · Seattle, WA · Joined 30 days ago · Points: 75
Brian Campbell wrote: I'm really glad to hear you had a good experience. KAF has a bad reputation for unethical guiding practices. Unless I'm mistaken, either KAF or the owner has been officially cited for illegal guiding in Leavenworth. It is pretty difficult to actually get caught doing something illegal guiding. What that usually means is that if you get caught once you probably broke the law many, many times. I genuinely hope that KAF ha cleaned up their act and they are offering legitimately good products.
Interesting. I haven't heard this, and I've heard only good things. Source?
Max Tepfer · · Bend, OR · Joined Oct 2007 · Points: 1,635
Eric Thompson wrote: That's so interesting Brian.  Who caught them?  The guide police?  Did they take him to guide jail? Mick is a solid person and Kaf doesn't have a bad reputation.  If you're the type of person that pays for instruction KAF isn't a bad place to get it.  I'm not friends with anyone there.  

He was running a climbing program outside of Leavenworth on the National Forest without permits for that area.  One of the owners of another guide service with legitimate permits got wind of that and contacted the Forest Service.  My understanding is that a ranger or FS representative went and cited them.  I imagine it was a fine or ticket.  

On a separate occasion before all this went down, I was walking down Mt. Hood (while working) and saw Mick guiding two clients up.  He was for sure working illegally as the company I work for is the only active permit holder for technical climbing on the mountain.  To Brian's point, I didn't do or say anything because unless law enforcement/a ranger shows up and saw him breaking the law, it wouldn't have gone anywhere.  After that, a coworker made up a fake email account and emailed KAF asking if they would guide them (illegally) up Hood and they said they would.

I have a lot of friends who are friends with Mick and I've cragged with him and them for a day.  I'm sure he's a good guy, but his business practices drive me crazy.  It's really easy to legitimately guest guide in Leavenworth and on Hood, but on multiple occasions, he's ignored that fact and run trips illegally.
Jeffrey K · · Seattle, WA · Joined Apr 2018 · Points: 0

Huh, interesting!

I can't speak to any of their guide service, just the intermediate rock climbing course.

I was pretty familiar with anchors, rappel and lead from self study but I'm more of a hands on learner and our instructor, David, was great. In stages he had us mock lead up, clean an anchor, place an anchor, rappel, do an easy lead and then put it all together.

Really nice way to safely practice what I already had knowledge of and much better than doing it in a gym, imo.

Roamin' Buffalo · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 50

This thread feels spammy

Jeffrey K · · Seattle, WA · Joined Apr 2018 · Points: 0
Roamin' Buffalo wrote: This thread feels spammy

The thread you refreshed from almost two weeks ago giving appreciative feedback on a local climbing company?

You feel trolly.
Roamin' Buffalo · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 50
Jeffrey K wrote:

The thread you refreshed from almost two weeks ago giving appreciative feedback on a local climbing company?

You feel trolly.

Its spelled B-u-f-f-a-l-o

Seraphim · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 0

I have no skin in the game but seriously why would another guide service report another guide service in the mountains?

Seems a bit like a cry baby tattle tale move to me. 

Garrett Genereux · · Laramie, WY · Joined Apr 2012 · Points: 10
Seraphim wrote: I have no skin in the game but seriously why would another guide service report another guide service in the mountains?

Seems a bit like a cry baby tattle tale move to me. 

Permits can be extremely hard to come by. It isn’t fair when certain companies jump through all the hoops and pay their fees, and someone just does whatever they want. It also can jeopardize all commercial access to high use areas such as the Icicle/Tumwater. 

Hobo Greg · · My Van · Joined Mar 2016 · Points: 160
Seraphim wrote: I have no skin in the game but seriously why would another guide service report another guide service in the mountains?

Seems a bit like a cry baby tattle tale move to me. 

The same reason why people who pay and work for college degrees get upset when people get fraudulent diplomas for a fraction of the price. It devalues what the former worked very hard for.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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