To celebrate our Dad’s 80th in 2018 my brother, Steven and I, briefly brought North-west Expeditions back to life as a lifestyle brand. It gave us a chance to celebrate a part of Dad’s life that he, and we, have always loved by doing some big fun things like having a booth at an outdoor adventure trade show, designing a remake of our Dad’s old Anorak, and selling some great mugs and shirts.
This is what that was all about.
Founded by Riverman Dr. David Rowe (aka Dad)
It all started with a scouting trip down the Nahanni River – 529 kms (328 miles) down an unknown river with paper maps, two friends, and a couple of rafts.
The years that followed were a pretty amazing time in our Dad’s life, and have forever influenced ours. We hope our story connects with you and your family too.
Founded and led in the 70s by our dad, Riverman Dr. David Rowe, North-West Expeditions was a rafting/guiding company in the North-West of Canada.
I count myself very fortunate… and quite happy that I have the privilege of doing this and sharing it with other people who would otherwise not experience it.
– Founder Dr. David Rowe (Dad)
Dad inspired a love of nature, a desire to get on the water, get out for a hike, a ride, a whatever. Regardless of the activity, he inspired us to go do cool things outside.
Guiding has been a shared experience between the three Rowe men. Steven currently spends his winter weekends as a ski host in the Rocky Mountains, and Ian was a canoe guide on the Athabasca River in Jasper National Park when he was eighteen.
These days Ian’s outdoor activities are mostly bike rides around town, paddle boarding and kayaking in English Bay, snowboarding local hills, and the occasional easy hike.
Steven on the other hand, is out in the wild, exploring remote islands, diving of the coasts of Canada and Mexico, and exploring the Canadian Rockies on a mountain bike or skis.
Dad, or at least his original stencilled logo and stories, have always present in our adventures. To this day we still talk about canoeing the Nahanni and he still wears his famous-to-us logo stencilled orange Anorak.
There’s a certain measure of freedom that’s very important to me. I find it preferable to work eighteen hours a day on the river than a nine to five job.
– Founder Dr. David Rowe (Dad)
So Here We Are
During the holidays of 2017 Steven got a copy of Dad’s original hand drawn logo and used it to make some hoodies as gifts for the family.We loved them – we’d admired the logo our whole lives. The cool part was that other people loved them too.
We loved them – we’d admired the logo our whole lives. The cool part was that other people loved them too. After a few whiskey infused nights of talking about it, we decided to (re)launch North-West Expeditions to share our love for the brand and its spirit with you.
The Journey Now
The more we’ve talked about it, the more we realize how lucky we are to get to do things we love to do with people we love to do them with. From paddle-boarding, to skiing up hill, going for drinks, or starting this company, it is important to us to make time for people and get out exploring together.
So here we are. We hope you will take a minute now, to outfit yourself with one of our Insulated Camp Mugs, or a well deserved Hoodie. Then reach out to someone you care about, and do something outside; a bike ride, a paddle, or a hike. Big or small go make a moment, and bring us along when you do.
North-West Expeditions is made for these moments.
Steven, Ian and Dad