Ian Douglas Brown
Ian Brown was born in Vancouver on June 19, 1942, and lived there until he was nine when the family moved to Ottawa. After graduating from high school he attended Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Physics. While at Queen's University he went on a ski trip to Lake Placid in New York State and there he met Margaret Palmer. Margaret also attended Queen's University but she was in medicine. Four years later in 1967 the two were married and on their honeymoon they went to the White Mountains and hiked up Mount Washington. Ian found he loved being in the mountains and decided to do a trip with some friends hiking in Colorado. A little later he returned with Margaret where they went skiing around Mount Elbert, the highest peak in the state and second highest in the contiguous United States. Later they moved to Conneticut where Margaret did her internship and Ian finished his Ph.D at Yale. The Brown's then moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia, where Ian began teaching at Dalhousie University but by now their family had grown to four with two young girls.
Ian had always expressed an interest in learning French and wanted to do it in France, however, he wasn't sure how to go about finding work there. A friend showed him the process and two years later the family moved to Rennes where Ian immersed himself in the language while at the same time teaching mathematics. Margaret in the meantime found a job as a laboratory assistant. In 1974 the Brown's moved back to Nova Scotia for a year and then in 1975 they crossed Canada to Victoria, British Columbia, where Ian got a job teaching at Royal Roads. Margaret had finished her residency and started a medical practice as a GP. By now Ian had become interested in psychology and did an undergraduate course at Uvic. When he obtained his Masters in 1979 Ian opened his own practice orientated towards family issues and for men.
During these early years in Victoria, the Brown's went on hiking trips in the Olympic Mountains across the Straits of Juan de Fuca in Washington with their two girls. Ian soon realized that he lacked the technical knowledge (rope handling, avalanche awareness, and rock and ice climbing skills) when in the mountains so to ensure they were instructing their children the right way they both joined the Vancouver Island section of the ACC. Their first trip in 1979 was with Syd Watts, John Gibson and Alan Robinson on a multi-day trip to Marble Meadows.
Although Ian became a competent leader on summer trips to the mountains, his greatest love was skiing and he eventually led many successful day-trips and multi-day traverses on skis to numerous different locations: Elfin Lakes and across the Garibaldi Neve; the Spearhead Traverse; the Wapta Icefield in the Rockies; a two week traverse of the Lillooet Ice Cap from Tchaikazan Glacier to Meager Creek where he climbed Mount Monmouth and Lillooet Mountains; and a traverse from the Lillooet River across northern Garibaldi Park and out between Wedge Mountain and the Spearhead Glacier.
In 1985 the family returned to Europe where they hiked the "Haute Route" from Chamonix to Zermatt. The following year they hiked in the Langtang region of Nepal and into the Annapurna Sanctuary. Along the way they climbed two peaks around 5,200m: Jsergo Ri and Rukse. In 1990 Ian and Margaret joined a trip to Georgia in what was still then the USSR led by Gil Parker. With Graham Maddocks, Sandy Briggs, Gerta Smythe and Murrough O'Brien and they climbed the 5,047 metre peak of Mount Kasbek.
Ian and Margaret have also made several trips into the Coast Mountains. The first time they sailed in their yacht up Bute Inlet and climbed Mount Munday, then they returned again in the spring of 1994 only this time with skis. The party included Rob Macdonald, Rick Eppler, Graham Maddocks, Doug Hurrell, Barb Brooks, Rudy Brugger and Claire Ebendinger. In 1996 Ian flew into the Tiedemann Glacier from Bluff Lake in the Chilkotin with Rudy Brugger and Rob Macdonald. There intention was to climb the Southeast Face route on Mount Waddington. By the end of the second day they arrived on Spearman Col during the middle of a high pressure system. The next day, although it was a very long day, became the highpoint of Ian's climbing career when he summited this notorious mountain with his two friends. Another trip that stood out for Ian was in 1998 when he and Margaret joined Reinhard Illner and Gerta Smythe on a trip to the Bugaboo's where he climbed Bugaboo Spire and Pigeon Spire. Both Ian and Margaret climbed extensively on the island and in 1996 both of them completed the nine climbs that are prerequisites for the Island Qualifier's.
On the community front Ian has been Chairman of a Family Crisis Line and for the local volunteers of a Citizens Council Centre, however, he also became the Chairman of the Vancouver Island section of the ACC in 1989 and remained in that position for seven years until 1996. Ian was keen at getting teens involved in mountaineering and to the National camps and created a sponsorship program that the section adopted. It was also during his leadership that the International Banff Mountain Film Festival was brought to Victoria. This annual event continues to fill the auditorium at Uvic each year with its mountain and culture films. In 2001 both Ian and Margaret received the Distinguished Service Medal from the ACC in recognition of matters other than mountaineering.
In 2003 Margaret
retired from her practice and in 2006 Ian also retired. They both now
spend a lot of time with their grandchildren and love working in their
garden which overlooks Esquimalt Harbour. Ian has a group of friends who
go out regularly trail building in the local Gowland Range and the Sooke
Hills. In 2007 Ian and Margaret celebrated their 40th wedding Anniversary
by visiting the Arolla valley in France and climbing Pigne d'Arolla. Since
retiring Ian has been on the local View Royal Parks Advisory Committee
and before that was on their Transportation Committee, and he still climbs
at the local indoor climbing gym in Victoria.
Brown, Margaret. "Skiing in and out of Forbidden Plateau." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section newsletter. (Summer 1983) Vol. 11:3 p. 1-2.
Brown, Ian. "The Garibaldi Neve." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section newsletter. (Spring/Summer 1984) Vol. 12:2 p. 1-2.
Brown, Ian. "Following our noses on Shepherd Ridge." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section newsletter. (Autumn 1984) Vol. 12:3. p. 2-3.
Brown, Margaret. "Victoria Peak." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section newsletter. (Fall 1988) p. 10.
Briggs, Sandy. "Caucasus Climb." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. (Fall 1990) p. 2-3.
Brown, Ian. "Alpine Club to Georgia." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. (Fall 1990) p. 3.
Brown, Margaret. "Diadem Peak." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1992. p. 5.
Pinch, Brian. "Big Interior Mountain via Bedwell Lake." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1992. p. 5-6.
Brown, Margaret. "Big Interior Mountain." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1993. p. 37-38.
Macdonald, Rob. "Kokanee Glacier Ski Camp." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1994. p. 11.
Ebendinger, Claire. "It's Munday Again!" Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1994. p. 16-17.
Mathews, Nigel. "Mt. Harmston." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. Victoria, B.C. 1994. p. 36-37.
Brown, Ian. "Crown Mountain." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1994. p. 39.
Lepp, Gerhardt. "Warden Peak or Mr. Moose and the Tumbling Glacier." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1995. p. 28.
Smythe, Gerta. "Nine Peaks in Nine Years!" Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1995. p. 31-33.
Brown, Margaret. "Mt. Rohr." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1995. p. 33.
Brown, Ian. "Mount Waddington." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 1996. p. 38-39.
Illner, Reinhard. "Washington Week: Liberty Bell, Concord Tower, Glacier Peak and Mt. Constance." Island Bushwhacker. The Alpine Club of Canada Vancouver Island section. 2002. p. 54-55.
Coast Mountain Men. Aware Publishing. Victoria, B.C. 2007.