Peter Bowle-Evans

September 27, 1946 - January 16, 2008

Sympathies, condolences, memories:

Rod Malach, Regina, Saskatchewan:

I remember travelling from Saskatchewan to British Columbia, on a round trip through the Okanagan on a camping trip ( no doubt with my hang glider on top of our car and with desperate hopes of doing some flying ). We round tripped BC with no luck, hooking up with locals along the way using the BC flying guide, it seemed hopeless. Our last stop was Golden BC. I contacted Peter Bowle-Evans in hopes of getting a flight. He appeared to be a very busy man with not a lot of time on his hands, but now I realize why after visiting his memorial website. He accomodated me with a ride up to Mt. Seven and wouldn't take a fee for the ride. He was generous in giving me that evening flight, which made my BC trip complete. I felt his true passsion for the sport, and his dedication to people, and his community. Thanks Peter.

My sympathy goes out to Brenda and Morgan on their loss of a husband, father, and friend.


Dear Brenda and Morgan,

I was so sorry to hear about Peter. My thoughts are with you both.
My mind keeps going back to Peter taking Morgan and Lucas out skiing together when they were first learning at White tooth. The two of them together would try any mans patience and Peter was great (although I do remember him being at about the end of his rope once or twice)
I also remember the words he carved into your cabin -- "To Brenda with love" -- and I thought, how much he loves you.
I wish there was something I could say or do to make things better for you....

If there is anything I can do, please let me know.

Rodd Dempsey:

Hello Brenda and Morgan,

I would like to say that I am greatly sorry for your loss. And hope that you both are doing well. Peter will be dearly missed in this valley, and his lack of presence will be felt by many daily. For me, Peter inspired me through-out the past 25 years or so I've known him, as a ski partner, as a pilot, as a friend, and a colleague with computer mapping and drafting being both our source of living. On January 16th I was on my way to work and I passed Peter on Hwy#95, all I saw was the usual big wave out his window and a smile the size of the Grand Canyon, and I knew, Peter was going skiing for the day. Not realizing this would be the last time I saw him, but I think it say's alot about how he choose to live his life(full tilt, going forward). Peter was someone I looked up to, and respected greatly, and will deeply miss. And I thought of a day many months ago, when I ran into him in the grocery store while shopping with my 3 children, He had a survey vest on and no shirt underneath and we met in an aisle, Peter began telling me of his recent ski touring activities of the past winter and how as time goes on it just gets better and better, and as we talked about it, it was noticeable how his level of excitement soared as he discussed how awesome skiing had been for him recently, his new ski's, newest partners, newest ares, etc... I felt like I almost had to hold him down or he would have floated away with obvious excitement! I believe he was trying to re-inspire me to ski again, as I haven't much in these past years. Well after 30 minutes or so.... it was time to finish shopping... My mind on skiing now, as Peter had intended it to be. When I got back into my Van my kids asked me "Who was that guy Dad?" I responded with "He is a local legend, and a good friend." That Peter is......

Geoff Dossetor, Australian/N.Z. Hang Glider Pilot:

Dear Brenda and Morgan,
my condolences go out to you both.

You and Peter were most welcoming the summer (1998 I think) I spent living in Parson and hang gliding around the area. I remember that Peter was a great flying enthusiast. I also recall that there were many pictures of him skiing placed around your wonderful log cabin. That building remains in my memory even today as like something out of a fairytale.

I don't know what to say other than that Peter enjoyed life, achieved greatly and was taken while out there doing what he loved. I hope you are able to move on with your own lives in the same fashion. Peter will, I suspect, continue flying and skiing up and down the Rockies in spirit while keeping an eye on you.

Kind regards

Domagoj Juretic, paraglider, HPAC President:

In the name of HPAC and pilots throughout Canada, thanks to Randy, Karen, Stewart and all other pilots present for having helped us make our feelings known at Peter's memorial in Golden.

Peter Bowle-Evans, July 2005

Peter Bowle-Evans, July 2005

Rob + Yolanda de Kleer:

Hi Brenda and Morgan,

I have included the text below from yesterday - feel free to use if you like, as you see fit. Thanks for allowing us all to share a bit with you yesterday. There is always so much more you learn and are reminded of a person when we do these things. I think too Bryan Kelly-McArthur's quote on measuring a tree after it has fallen, resonated with many. It is too bad we do not use some trigonometry now!

I thank-you too for allowing us to remember one of our first special experiences in Golden. This was soon after we came here you invited us out to dine with you. It meant a lot to us then and I hope that we too have been able to mirror some of that hospitality to new comers ourselves. Yolanda recalls the tour we got ending at the skylight in your bedroom and how much Peter enjoyed it. Well, guess what we built into our bedroom - yep a big skylight facing the mountain! Lastly, I wanted to offer my help if you need any, to do any data cleanup on projects that Peter may have been working on. If there is anything I can do on that front I would be happy to help out.

Again our hearts go out to you as you walk on...

During the memorial:

The First time I spoke to Peter was by phone about 15 yrs ago. He contacted me for the technical part of an interview for a job in Golden. He, with his accent quizzing me on cadd software applications and how I would handle a corrupt file situation. Then in turn describing work and more importantly life in Golden. Skiing, Climbing Hangliding etc and also Brenda's English Riding Horses. I honestly thought he might go out fox hunting – well the accent fit!

Well we ended up in Golden and soon realized that Peter was a unique piece of the fabric we have enjoyed these past years. Others of you know better some of his involvements and activities better than I. Including work in Roger's Pass, Whitetooth skiing, log home building, hang gliding John Deere tractors and a lot of other things he explored. I worked with him in Chuck's office then and watched some of his being there.

In the summer at work there was always a desk which got cleared of clutter which was in front of a window which faced Mt 7. When the thermals started he would suddenly have to stop the work on the computer and start to doing some manual calculation work. So, with paper, pencil, calculator -- and a set of binoculars he would move to that cleared spot looking toward Mt 7. The phone would be moved there too. He would proceed to do some calculations, and then for some reason would check these numbers by looking at something on Mt7. Maybe his way of Engineering I do not know.

As the time went on he would quietly start to make these phone calls as he continued to gaze at the launch site. Then the calls would start coming in. He was arranging rides up to the launch. Soon strange to me - people would start to show up and mill around talking hang gliding talk with regular checks on the flagging up at the launch using the binoculars.

His personality had taken on a new demeanour too – he was starting to wind up! He walk around faster then when he had first come into the office and his eyes had a twinkle to them on those days.

Then suddenly some code word was said and all the pilots and driver would be gone with a flurry and a roar (that was his truck) and all was quiet in the office. When there was a hang gliding meet it could be like that for days in a row.

Funny, I do not remember seeing him much in the winter! Maybe he was at Whitetooth on Fridays and Mondays??

I was always amazed at some of his vehicles he had from that Eagle car with the cartoon of the train on the dent, to a beater Jeep pickup which Rocky Calhoun condemned for them. A few noisy old GM trucks. All with custom hangliding racks. Funny how many of us conjure up "remembrances" based on our vehicles.

During lunch – his lunch time (which was always later) Brenda would often pop in and kind of lean into his work area and ask him if he was good to go for lunch. Often he had to finish something to a point before he could just let it go.

His work was always thorough with his unique flair as seen in his hand writing - which I come across at the Town office once in a while. There was never any question of his desire for accuracy and his work ethic was high. He had his processes and routines which though maybe unique, many of us admired him for.

He always had a vest with small note book and a host of tools and paper work in it. He would come into the concrete plant and bang bang slap out came his work book, cell phone and pencil in a certain order. I seem to recall that if his pencil was missing from his vest you could just see him go crazy with the loss and life was good when it was back where it belonged. I knew that when I worked with Peter I worked with someone who was passionate about whatever it was that he was doing and I appreciated that passion.

Peter will be missed by me – maybe not in a immediate in your face kind of way but I think in a deeper and longer way. I am glad we had the chance to meet and work early on when we came to Golden.

I know too that Brenda and Morgan that it will be tough without him. And I wish you the best possible - as you step on without Peter and try to find a new balance in your walk. As a community I know that we have lost a unique piece of fabric which leaves a hole and will both missed and be remembered for a long time.

David Milne (Bear), via Robin:

Hello Robin,
Just some memories of Peter Bowle-Evans for sending on to his wife Brenda and family:

I am very sorry to hear of Peter's death. I was at Sheffield University with Peter (and Robin Cole) studying civil Engineering and even shared a rather damp house in Sheffield with him for a year. Some of my memories of Peter are given below:

We climbed together in the Peak District and then in the Dolomites in the alps. He broke an ankle in a short climbing fall onto the deck (nothing to do with me – I was not there) but then we then climbed together on an overhanging route near Sheffield while his ankle was in plaster and I had to carry him from his motorbike to the foot of the climb. He was a very determined character indeed. We noticed when his ankle was mending he used to limp when he thought life was not going well but when he was in a good mood or going skiing the limp would vanish.

He acquired a minivan (very small with no seats in the back) and I have memories of 4 of us squeezed into the vehicle with all the climbing gear going on climbing trips to the Lake District. His driving we thought at the time was rather too exciting as he explored the limits of adhesion. Reading the obituary accounts on Google I can see he (like the rest of us) had gained respect for life and responsibilities and I think his loss is tragic.

One summer on a climbing holiday in North Wales we stayed in a climbing hut in Llanberis and I had left Pete cooking the supper while I walked to the local shop and back. Peter met me as I came back to the hut saying my petrol stove was roaring away and about to blow up which it promptly did – he did have the foresight to take the dinner off the stove if not to pour water over the stove or turn it down. I was not terribly happy with the loss of the stove. Pete thought he had done hid duty saving the supper.

While climbing in the Dolomites I insisted in putting Peter's mattress out of the tent to air when we went climbing as it was starting to smell a bit – a thunderstorm struck and his mattress never dried out again during the holiday (I was not terribly sympathetic at the time – I did not have a mattress). I am not sure if he ever forgave me for his soaking wet mattress he had to carry round for the rest of the trip.

I am really sorry to hear of Pete's death – it sounds like he was as adventurous as ever (which I think is laudable indeed). I do not imagine it is much consolation but it does sound as if he has lived life to the full and given the family an adventurous life in Canada . I am sorry I lost touch.


I cant think of anything but Brenda and Morgan. I have been reading the press coverage online and my heart is broken for all of you. How are you all holding up. Please know we are all thinking of you here and I wish I could be there. Much Love

I am totally shocked - please send my love and prayers. I wish there was something I could do. If you can think of anything please let me know. I'll keep in touch. XXOO


Hi Brenda
I don't know if you remember me but I am Marilyns niece. I have been up to your place riding and exploring. I have great memories of your house and of your strong, giving personality. I am so sorry to hear of your tragedy and want you to know my thoughts and prayers are with you.

Peter and Janet:

Dear Brenda and Morgan
We were most shocked to learn from Tache of Peter's tragic death - he was so considered in challenging places.

He was among the truest and bravest of men.

Both of you have all our sympathies - will write.

Peter Chrzanowski:

Dear Brenda
So sad to hear the news. I lost so many friends in avalanches. Peter was one of them. My deepest condolences. I am travelling now. At least we have his memory in my film, GOLDENRUSH.

Cousin George:

Dear Cousin Brenda, and Morgan, I am so sorry to hear of the tragic loss of your husband and father to Morgan. Though I didn't know Peter with the depth of close family I do share in your grief. Myself and Monika are unable to attend his memorial service, as at the moment I am away. We have lived in the same province,less than a day's drive and I do wish I had made the effort to vist and get to know you and your family. I trust you will find comfort and support among family and friends at this time of grieving. God's Blessing on you


Hello Brenda and Morgan, I am so sorry for your loss,please accept my heartfelt condolences. Peter was a real dynamo, and will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him. You are in my thoughts and prayers


Dear Brenda and Morgan,
I am so sorry for your loss of Peter. Although I didn't know him extremely well, I picture him as a very kind and genuine man. Reading about Peter's life has been really inspiring, seeing all the amazing things he accomplished. This must be an incredibly hard time for both of you, my thoughts and wishes are with you. I look forward to seeing you soon. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help.

Lot of love

Jim Doyle, Mayor, Town of Golden:

Brenda & Morgan,
Peter gave so much to his adopted country. As I have said to many people in the past week Mount 7 would still only be a local known Mountain without dreamers and builders like Peter. Mount 7 is now recognized around the world as the premier site for paragliding and hang-gliding thanks to the drive of Peter.

Peter touched so many people in a very positive way in our community.

William Doyle:

Dear Brenda and Morgan,
I am tremendously sorry for the great loss to you, your family and the community of Golden. Before I started working with him on the project in the Kicking Horse Canyon last year, I only knew him as the friend of my parents' whose red Pathfinder was so easily recognizable by the hang gliding rack. In the hustle and bustle working environment which was the bridge project, I was fortunate to be able to have many good chats with Peter. Whether it was in a gap between concrete trucks or while going through paper work at the end of the long days, he always made the time. We would talk about one of our shared interests, mostly engineering and the outdoors. From these conversations I came to greatly respect Peter's appreciation for the pace of life- while he embodied professionalism in his work, he was always quick to encourage me to look beyond the working day when I grumbled about the dry concrete or the blowing rain. His legacies are truly countless.

Kind regards

Rita Paul:

Dear Brenda, We've never met but I was so very sorry to hear about your loss from April.

  'Words are poor comforters.
   The heart knoweth its own sorrow
   And in such sorrow we are always alone.'
                        William Wordsworth

My deepest condolences to you and your Family.


Moralea, Brenda, third time trying here. I've just read your emails and am sitting here in shock. Thank you for sending the obituary to me, it's very beautiful and warm and full of love. Very inspiring. It was wonderful to read his own words as well. I'm still floundering with this but wanted to write right away and just send my love and thoughts. Please know that I am there in spirit. I'm so glad you can be there with Brenda, Moralea. Much love


Dear April, I was so sorry to hear about your brother-in-law. Moralea wrote such a nice piece about him. It was wonderful to read and get to know him. I wish you all the warmth or family and friends in this time of need. Please give my sincerest sympathies to Brenda and your family. Take care and fly home safely.

Marilyn's sister Vicky & Family, Vicky, Paul, Danielle & Kevin Williams:

Dear Brenda,
I would like to extend our sincere sympathy with you at this difficult time.

Elizabeth Murphy, via email:

Dear Brenda and Morgan,

My heart and prayers are with both of you at this time.

Peter was my first ski instructor, I remember his lessons fondly! He set me on my path of skiing, something is my number 1 passion to this day. I hope that you are finding comfort in all of your wonderful memories of your time with Peter, he sure did touch on hundreds of peoples lives.

Love and Blessings

John Janssen, hang glider, via email:

Hi Brenda and Morgan,

I met each of you only once, but I spent many hours with Peter on the ground and in the air. I am deeply saddened by the loss you must be feeling. The following are a few thoughts I had of some of the time I shared with Peter.

Peter Bowle-Evans died last week while back country skiing 5 km south of the Kicking Horse ski resort in Golden B.C. He was caught in an avalanche while skiing with two others. Peter was a small man (in stature only) who could move mountains. He transformed Mount 7 from a flying site accessible to only a few expert pilots, and made it available to the average pilot and general public. He worked tirelessly and unselfishly with politicians, local businesses, and the community to develop and promote a world class flying site. He was a local pilot from Golden that went beyond his own desires to fly the area, and wanted to share the opportunity with as many people as possible. He wanted everyone to experience what he experienced by flying over the mountain peaks of Golden.

Whether flying, skiing or hiking, Peter loved the mountains around Golden. He lived there, worked there, and played there. He saw little reason to go anywhere else because he lived in paradise. He was a great storyteller and many of us listened intently as he spoke of his adventures flying down the range from Golden. I gave Peter a ride up the mountain one day and asked him, "So where are you flying to today?" Peter often flew off down the valley letting the clouds guide him with no thought of how he would get back or get his truck off the top of the mountain. This resulted in many great flying adventures but also many late nights (or early mornings) getting home. So his answer to my question that day was, Nicholson. He told me that after one particularly late night retrieval from a cross country flight, his wife had demanded to know why he couldn't just land at Nicholson like everybody else. Since Brenda new Peter best, I'm sure she knew the answer to her own question. But before landing at Nicholson that day, Peter, Serge and I flew for over three hours and only landed because it was getting dark. So much for getting home early.

The mountains breathed life into Peter Bowle-Evens and ultimately also took it away. His spirit lives on in the mountains and in the people whose lives he touched. I was fortunate enough to be one of them.

Garth Henderson, paraglider, via email:

Dear Brenda & Morgan, My heartfelt condolences. We've only met a couple of times but you may remember me as the person who Peter talked into taking over the treasurer job at the HPAC when he took on the harrowing job of being President. As with many things to do with flying and Mount 7, Peter was totally supportive in terms of efforts to develop the initial web site back when web sites were a novelty. He enthusiastically provided pictures, written contributions and, of course, ideas. Peter and I started flying Mt.7 about the same time - he was a hang glider and I was a paraglider. We both loved the Mount 7 site and spent many an hour chewing the fat about the potential of the mountain as one of Golden's great adventure tourism resources. In any case, Peter once sent me a piece on "Living Life" which was posted on the flygolden site for a couple of years. I've re-posted that piece on the flygolden news page as I think it is a real nice counter to some of the less sensitive, ubanized perceptions that have come out in the media since this tragedy occured. You can find the link to it at the bottom of the post about Peter at: I hope it gives you some comfort at this time of unimaginable grief. I certainly admired Peter's philosopy about grabbing life by the horns despite the inevitable risks. I also appreciated the unique quality of of his friendship over so many years. Peter was a person who was passionate and made a difference. I know he gleefully counted every day that he skied in a given season. It was one of his measures of the good life in the mountains. Giving up a perfectly good ski day to stay "safe" would not have been an option. That was the Peter I knew - good on him, I say.

My heart goes out to both of you for the pain you are suffering at his loss.

Joyce deBoer, via email:

It's All About Love

When I first heard about Peter's death, three images came immediately to mind.

The first was an imagined one and one I think about each time I'm up at the stables with my daughter Kay. I imagine the look on Peter's face when he finished the inscription, "To Brenda, with love" that he carved above the door of the log home they built together.

He would have stood, feet apart, chisel or chainsaw at the end of a slack but sinewy arm, and he would have reviewed his work one last time, turned to look for Brenda and given a nod of his head. Brenda would have given him a hug and a kiss. I've seen them kiss and it's amazing to see such strong, independent people melt against each other for just the briefest of moments.

The second image was a memory of mine from this past December when we shared Christmas dinner together with Peter, Brenda a few friends.

Brenda and "us ladies" were in the bathroom together, admiring the new dress Peter had given her. It was very modern, clingy and completely flattering. I could easily imagine that when he bought it, he knew he would enjoy looking at her in it.

And while we were giggling together, Peter was teaching my daughter Claire the secrets of perfect gravy. They would continue their discussion during the evening and later Claire commented on how much she had enjoyed his intelligent conversation. A half century of living separated them, but that hadn't mattered.

The third image is one that Peter shared with me. We had just moved to Golden and I headed up to Kapristo Stables hoping that I'd find them simply awful or just too expensive and I could take this information home to dissuade Kay from her wish to follow her passion. (No luck there: thanks to Brenda we now have a horse in our backyard and a sheep to keep it company.)

Brenda wasn't there and I got to talking with Peter. He asked me if I was interested in horses and I had to tell him, no. I said that he must and he waved his hand dismissively and said, "Horses?! I haven't any use for them." I had to look around and then back to him and raised my eyebrows to ask, "Well, what about the fact that you live with all these horses?"

He said that when he first saw Brenda he'd promised himself that he'd do whatever it took to dance with her for the rest of his life. When he talked to Brenda about this she'd stated, "I come with horses." And Peter told me that he'd said, "OK. Now, let's dance!" And so they have together and around each other for several decades.

On Thursday, after I had phoned around and confirmed the awful news, I spoke with Thelma Brown who said, "Welcome to Golden, where the mountains sometimes take the ones we love."

The next day I was driving up to Brenda's place and the mountains were absolutely and fiercely beautiful in the brilliant sunshine. And the phrase turned in my head. Maybe it should be that, sometimes the mountains take the ones they love. Or maybe, the mountains take the ones that love them.

I guess it's all about love.

Margaret and Lawrence Cooper, via email:

Peter, we remember vividly your growing-up years in England. You were an adventurous child with a pioneering spirit. Canada was to give you the freedom to enjoy the open-air life you so enjoyed. Now this untimely accident makes us see that way back then Golden and its backcountry were your destiny.

Peter never knew his father Guy who had been a wartime pilot in the Royal Air Force. Joan, his mother, still lives in his childhood home, Cameo Cottage. When she was told the sad news she sat down and said after a very long pause, "Oh dear! He is my one and only son isn't he?"

Peter was able to take his enthusiasm for trains outdoors when Joan married Stanley Cook. Perhaps one of their greatest pleasures was building a miniature model railway in the garden complete with stations, points, signals, tunnels and bridges. All these playthings were a triumph of engineering. On his last visit here to Purleigh a few years ago he dismantled what were the last remains of it.

What energy and determination he put into pedalling his little bike the four miles to come to see us. He called it a 'legs-ache machine' but even so he was a regular and welcome visitor - especially so during the school holidays. He was no age at all when he told us he was going to Churchills. This was some sort of assault course in the next County where he went to learn about rock climbing.

Back in the 1950's Joan drove a small Jowett. The letters on the number plate were EPB so it was fondly known as 'Evans Peter Bowle'. The places that almost vintage car was driven to is anybody's guess.

Then there was riding. At that time we had several ponies and many of his school age group went hacking/trekking on them across the fields and in the woods. Also there was the fun of summertime gymkhanas together. We remember the old family pony knew quite as much as Peter did - if not a little bit more besides - but it wasn't long before he mastered her mischievous ways. So hopefully, Brenda, when you met him we had at least taught Peter that the horse has four legs and more than four gears!

We remember Brenda - you will have forgotten, your one visit to us. You had a short ride on our old grey 'Sugar' pony and you had to hold young Morgan on in front of you.

Much as we should have liked to be present today, we are with you in our thoughts. This is not written as a tribute; it is penned on Joan's behalf as her contribution to Peter's Memorial Service. These are a few happy memories of Peter's boyhood we should like to share with you all at this time.

Vincene Muller, via email:

I heard the news of the avalanche in Golden last week and immediately thought of Peter. He was the most avid back country skier in the area that I knew – I just had a bad feeling.

Peter had taken Willi back country about 15 years ago and then Chris some 7 or 8 years ago, possibly to the same location as the accident. They both came back thrilled with the experience of skiing with such a superb skier and guide. Neither of my guys were noted for going back country – they were more used to the comfort of the ski lift for uphill transportation.

I remember Peter when he first started hang gliding. Full of enthusiasm and excitement about flying his beloved Mt 7!

In 1990 he phoned to ask Willi if we could all go to Golden to fly as 'entertainment' for a Range Rover convention. The US distributor brought 50+ Range Rovers from the US and 200 North American dealers to Chateau Lake Louise for a convention. They initially thought that they could drive all over the ski hill to test out the SUV's! When reality struck they contacted Peter about using Mt 7.

The old road was ideal but many of these dealers had never driven off road – and it wasn't just any road! They placed signs on the curves with instructions on when and how to shift down! More instructions were placed for the drive down. Did I mention that there was fresh snow on the road? Those Range Rovers were the ultimate vehicle for the road

Launch had tables setup with waiters from Lake Louise serving lunch and champagne. I have never seen so many fur coats and high heels at a luncheon – Let alone a 'remote' hang glider launch!

The highlight of the day was to be a huge helicopter 'dropping' the 1991 model Range Rover on launch. The launch was sprayed with a chemical to stop the dust and Peter had designed the mechanics and nets that held the vehicle. He was excited waiting to see how it would unfold in front of the audience. I believe the plan was that the helicopter would hover above launch, the pilot would hit a button and the nets would drop away leaving the Range Rover sitting on top. Much like unwrapping a gift.

Well, it sounded great but unfortunately due to bad weather North of Golden the helicopter and new Range Rover never arrived.

Fortunately for the organizers, Peter had a backup plan. Willi, Chris and I launched our hang gliders in front of the crowd. Peter didn't get the opportunity to fly as he was involved in the organization of this unusual event.

Peter would often call over the years to discuss his ideas on improvements for launch, the road, the ramp, HPAC, Forestry and the many projects he worked on.
It is too bad that it takes a catastrophe like this to appreciate all that he has done for Canadian pilots.

I will miss chatting with Peter in the landing area or on launch but will always think of him when I am in Golden.

My thoughts are with you Brenda and Morgan, but you do have wonderful memories of an amazing man.

Jacob, via email:

Dear Brenda,

I am so sorry to hear about Peter. I don't know what to say except that I loved him and will miss him so much!!!!!! Last winter he was like an angel that came to me and we danced together in the backcountry. I can not remember a time in my life when I was as happy as those weeks that Peter and I spent playing together. I will keep in touch with you Brenda and definitely come see you in the future. I will keep you and Morgan and Peter in my blessings and prayers.


Michael Fuller and Krista Wells, via email:

I am so saddend by this news as is our entire community of pilots. I first met Peter in Calgary at an hpac board meeting and we spent a lot of off time confirming that indeed we would have a much more involved friendship if not for the huge space between us called the rest of Canada. We seemed to have so much in common aside from age. I wish we had been able to see that friendship mature. The last time we spoke a year ago I was on my way through Golden to a Mara Lake flying gathering. He was busy at that time and couldn't get away.

Last night we had our annual winter meeting of pilots here on the east coast and of course Peter's accident was on everyone's mind. Consequently I'd like to pass along best wishes from all of us here in the east in hopes that you will find comfort and a peace of mind as soon as possible.

Peace, love and happiness to you both

Martin Nowoselski, via email:

I met Peter in Golden in the summer of 2001. It was the one and only time I got to meet him. His reputation preceded him. I was flying hang gliders at the time. He didn't know me but still took the time and trouble to explain the site, the conditions, the flight paths and the plan of the day.

It was my first cross country flight and I flew to Parsons before deciding to land. It turns out Peter landed out a few kilometers short of my distance. I like to think he gave me that one.

It means a lot to me to be recognized by yourselves as one of the flying community.

I met the man only once but was impressed with his humility, his knowledge and his friendship. Peters life was a life well lived.

I have the feeling there will be a throng of pilots and friends at the service. I wish I could be one of them.

God bless you and thank you for sharing him with us.

Helen Weiss, via email:

Dearest Brenda,

My heart goes out to you and Morgan in this time of such deep sadness. Marilyn managed to send me an E-mail. I had just heard of Peter's death the night before through our friend David.
Peter loved the mountains and skiing so much...but what we love, whether it is the mountains, the sea, soaring in the sky or jumping horses... can so quickly, in a moment, change and break our body or even take our life. You have both been so blessed with being able to follow your passions in life... and having had each other.
I'm sure Peter won't have traded the joy of being in the mountains for so many years for a bit more security.
I send my deepest, heart-felt love to you both.

big hug

Jessica Kelly, via email:

Hi Brenda

I don't know if you remember me but I am Marilyn's niece. I have been up to your place riding and exploring. I have great memories of your house and of your strong, giving personality.
I am so sorry to hear of your tragedy and want you to know my thoughts and prayers are with you.

Tony Howes, paraglider:

Regards to the family. I still can't believe it, and I am very sad every time I remember. I still feel that way about Chris' death too, so I suppose I won't be shaking these feelings any time soon. I hate seeing people departing WAY too soon. This just sucks.

Glen Ewan, Q.C.:

Peter showed me, a young man from the city, the first time we met how to stop and see and the wonders of the natural world around us here in Golden. He was full of the love of life and adventure. His huge unrecognized contribution to the design, funding and building of the Mt 7 site is his legacy to the community. I call on our leaders to grant him now the accolade he did not receive in life - let us rename the Mt 7 site for him.

Dale McKnight, Chatter Creek Mountain Lodges:

Dear Friends,
My heart goes out to Brenda and Morgan.

I have skied and worked in the mountains with Peter from a very young age. He took me under his wing as a young man and taught me a kind of respect for the mountains which has helped keep me out of trouble to this day. These are very fond memories and helped shape my love for the mountains. Peter pioneered most of the ski touring lines around Kicking Horse and has more miles in these mountains than anyone. His passion for the mountains was intense and his spirit will live there for ever.

I'll keep an eye out for you Pete as I know you are out there with us all.

Peter Bowle-Evans, above the 7

Peter Bowle-Evans, above the 7

Reprints from the hpac list

Domagoj Juretic L, paraglider, HPAC President:

As the actual HPAC president, I would like to give my condolences to all members of HPAC who knew Peter and to all the new pilots who should go out and find out all that Peter did for our sport. As president, as a pilot and as a skier this loss seems to affect me quite a bit even though I did not have a chance to meet him.

A big loss for the Canadian family of pilots...

Randy Parkin, paraglider:

When I heard news of the avalanche this morning, I had this fleeting thought that Peter was the only 61 year old I knew who would be out of bounds at Kicking Horse - but it couldn't be him. Very, very saddened to hear it is.

Some pilots reading this list may not realize just how much they owe Peter. If you've flown Golden or will in future, thank Peter when you drive up that two-wheel drive road, launch over the trees from Lookout, or have the mis-fortune to make use of the safety equipment on either launch or the Contingency Fund. Others were involved, but over the last 15 years Peter was the main man for pulling all that together so we can fly more safely and comfortably at one of the best flying sites in the world. He also made a large contribution to HPAC, as a past president and in many other ways.

More important, he was just a hell of a guy. Many times, perhaps too often, he put other pilots' interests ahead of his own, giving up a good flying day, work time, or time with his family to get stuff done that no one else would do, organize a search party to save someone else's dumb ass, or just help someone out of a bind. For myself, I know I could not have made those meets out there work without his unselfish and largely unrecognized contribution.

If I had the chance I'd thank him for all his hard work, apologize for making fun so many times of his long-winded speeches, and remind him he was the last man (as far as I know) to see my wife naked (long story that has to do with a hot night, no air conditioning at Mary's, and a plan to meet at 1:00AM to discuss important meet matters).

Some of you have heard my speech about making a point to say hello and goodbye to your good flying friends every time you see them. We get close to people quickly in this sport, and never know when family pressures, other interests or tragic events will take them away from it. I meant to look Peter up last summer and didn't. I regret it. Take care all.

Serge Lamarche, hang glider:

Having flown with him so much. He was the one local who learned the fastest how to hang glide in Golden. He was catching the clues.

He was also very involved with the development of mount 7. The most important part was the new road.

The most fun time was when he got involved with the HPAC. He often asked for advice. He was coming back from meetings often baffled or quite irate. It was a lot of fun for me that had similar problems years earlier. We owe him all for the new HPAC/ACVL.

Update 2020: Peter had a dark side that few knew. Scott Watwood, currently in charge of the mt 7 flying site, revealed in 2015 that he and Peter murdered one adult and one child (likely in 1971). The child came back to life with a serious concussion. Police has a file. Long story short (elsewhere), that child is writing these lines...

Reprints from the West coast soaring club forum

Martin and Mia, hang gliders:

Peter was a key figure in the development and beginnings of our now World famous flying destination, Mt. Seven in Golden.

Our condolences to Peter's family.

Pete Ehlers:

Just heard this on the radio. Peter is now the second avalanche death this winter of someone I know. For those into backcountry snow sports, please be extremely careful out there, this season's snowpack is brutal for avalanches. Experienced and avalanche knowledgeable people are still losing their lives regardless of their preparedness.

Heartfelt condolences to Peter's family and friends, on behalf of the South Okanagan Air Riders.

Jeff Rempel:

We met Peter only a couple of times yet we heard about his contributions to free flight often.

Our sympathies go out to his family and friends.

Margit Nance, BCHPA:

Peter was a pioneer and visionary in developing flying sites for our sport, Mount Seven being one of his legacies. As pilots in B.C. and far beyond, we owe him a lot and his leadership will not be forgotten.

Condolences to his family.

Dan K.:

I'm numb with the sad news that another HG pioneer is no longer with us.

Not only was he an acomplished HG pilot and tireless volunteer, he was also one hell of a skier.

In the early 90's we attended a BCPHA Director's meeting at Big White in Kelowna. Peter was representing the Rockies and I was representing the Fraser Valley. We both were submitting site development proposals to the BCHPA, Peter for the massive Golden launch and I was working on improving Woodside by removing the wooden ramp and shaping the slope.

The next day Peter and I took our sons skiing at Big White and I will never forget how effortlessly he skied down a nasty black diamond mogul field under the chair lift. He was on fire, like a hot knife through butter.

He left us all doing what he loved, surrounded by the awesome beauty of nature. A fitting closing chapter from the book of Peter.

Our condolences goes out to Peter's family.

His Golden site development legacy is a shining becon to his eternal spirit.

Peter Rasmussen:

Here is a man I only met once while flying at golden a few years back. My thought of him then was, wow! That is one fit fellow! And what an easy going guy. Looks like we all lost a good guy. My condolences to his family and friends The good always go too soon.

Stewart Trowsdale:

Well said Dan. I don't have the words like you wrote so well, only memories of a hell of a good friend.

Fred Wilson:

Good bye dear friend
You will be lovingly in our hearts for ever.

As a BCHPA board member, your legacy of achievements dates back almost two full decades.

As HPAC Board member, then later President, you oversaw the complete overhaul of the old HPAC through the transistion process and on to become the new and effective entity that it finally has become. This was a brutal job for all involved, but the work load for our President was what can only be described as crushing and yet you managed to bear the load so well, so diplomatically, so passionately, so compassionately.

A life so well lived, a soul so pure, so kind, with such inate humanity, such dedication to uplifting others. Your legacy lives on forever in MT 7 Launch, with the Golden Contingency Fund, the rescue equipment at launch and that donated to Golden S&R.

Your leadership helped lift us all (and especially the HPAC) out of the dark ages and your guiding light beams far into the future. You will never be forgotten.

Our letters of condolence, admiration and respect can be sent to:
Brenda Bowle-Evans
PO Box 2035 Golden BC V0A 1H0

There will be a wake at the landing field building in Nicholson on Tuesday from 2 to 5 pm (jan 22).

Date, Time and Location of funeral to follow.

See the contributions of Peter for his Master rating at the HPAC

The Master Rating is our sport's highest honour for a lifetime of volunteer effort and spirit.

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