VERMONT ADVENTURE CLUB
ORIGINATED 1989 * ESTABLISHED 2001
Map of Northeastern VAC Trips
The Vermont Adventure Club has its origins in an early spring (1989) trip down the St. John River by future club members Tony Lee and Rick Kozlowski. To be kind, they had novice (pronounced NO-VEE-CHAY, Italian for “awesome”) whitewater paddling skills – a fact that was revealed when they struck a rock in Class 1 rapids on the first day, rolled the canoe and dumped all of their non-waterproofed gear. All but one paddle was lost requiring the bow paddler to use a stick to fend off rocks (until a plastic paddle was found in an eddy several miles downriver). Days later, Kozlowski and Lee survived two sets of Class III rapids without PFD’s, helmets, skill or much common sense. Despite the many mistakes, the trip was a riot and a complete success.
This early trip predated Kozlowski’s move to Vermont (1991) and his friendship with the other members of the VAC. The next two trips down the St. John (1996 and 1998) were inspired by the 1989 trip and were the genesis of the first trip down the Bonaventure where the VAC was formed (2001). On the Bonaventure, it was decided by the founding members (Dan Burchard, Dan McFall, Chip Martin and Rick Kozlowski) that the club should have no rules, no charter, no dues and no structure. The only prerequisite to membership is to participate from time to time in VAC adventures.
After a one year hiatus in 2002, the VAC has organized at least one trip each year for the last 14 years (except 2020 -- Covid pandemic). Radiant, Petawawa, Tetons, Dumoine, Huntington Ravine, Crow, Katahdin, Cascades, Missinaibi, and more are all places visited by the VAC in the last 14 years. A complete trip list is below naming the members and others who participated.
The VAC is a club in name only – it’s only real mission is to get together, share the outdoors, drink a few beers and have a bunch of laughs.
In the words of GW: Mission Accomplished.
Current Participating Members: Tony Lee, Rick Kozlowski, Dan McFall, Dan Burchard, Pete Brady, and Graham Shaw.
Year Location Members/Participants Activity
1989 St. John River Tony, Rick WW Canoe
1996 St. John River Dan B., Dan M., Szymanski, Rick WW Canoe
1998 St. John River Dan B., Szymanski, Rick, Lil Dan WW Canoe
2001 Bonaventure Dan B, Dan M, Chip, Rick WW Canoe
2003 Radiant Lake Dan B, Dan M, Chip, Rick Canoe/Fish
2003 Great Gulf/Mt. Washington Dan B, Chip, Rick Hike/Camp
2004 Shasta Dan B, George Mahon, Rick Mountaineer
2005 Dumoine Dan B, Tony, Pete, Rick WW Canoe
2005 Radiant Dan B, Dan M, Tony, Pete, Koerner, Rick Canoe/Fish
2006 Mount Rainier Graham, Rick Mountaineer
2007 Petawawa River Dan B, Dan M, Tony, Rick WW Canoe
2008 Mount Baker Graham, Rick Mountaineer
2009 Bonaventure Dan B, Dan M, Pete, Tony, Rick WW Canoe
2010 Radiant Dan B, Dan M, Rick Canoe/Fish
2010 Huntington Ravine Graham, Rick Ice Climb
2011 Radiant Dan B, Dan M, Kieran, Rick Canoe/Fish
2011 Tetons Rick Hike/Camp
2011 Huntington Ravine Graham, Rick Ice Climb
2012 Radiant/Philip Lake Dan B, Dan M, Pete, Rick Canoe/Fish
2012 Radiant Dan B, Rick, Kieran, Brad Canoe/Fish
2013 Madison Gulf Rick, Graham Ice Climb/Winter Camp
2013 Radiant Dan B, Dan M, Rick Canoe/Fish
2014 Mount Katahdin Graham, Rick Ice Climb/Winter Camp
2014 Algonquin Loop Dan B, Dan M, Pete, Rick, Lil Tone Canoe/Fish
2015 Missinaibi River Dan B, Dan M, Pete, Rick WW Canoe/Fish
2015 Presidential Traverse Rick, Graham Backpack/Camp
2016 Huntington Ravine Graham, Rick Ice Climb
2016 Cascade Mountains Rick, Graham Mountaineer/Backpack
2016 Mistassibi River Dan B, Dan M, Pete, Tony, Rick WW Canoe
2017 Winter Presi Traverse Rick, Graham, Alan Winter Backpack/Camp
2017 Radiant Lake Dan B, Dan M, Rick Canoe/Fish -- in the snow
2018 Huntington Ravine Graham, Rick Ice Climb
2018 Radiant Lake Rick (solo, with Duncan) Canoe/Fish
2018 Manicouagan Reservoir Pete, Dan B., Dan M., Rick Circumnavigation of a 145 mile annular lake
2019 Nova Scotia Graham, Dan B., Dan M., Rick, Lil' Pete Kayaking and sailing in the 100 Wild Islands
2021 Radiant Lake Graham, Dan B., Dan M., Rick Canoe/Fish