Club or Association Memberships: Telluride Mountain Club
Previous Publications: The Climbing Zine
A well-rounded adventurer, Albert Kim has used, abused, and even manufactured outdoor gear. Before he left for flight school, Kim worked at Wagner Custom Skis in Telluride, Colorado, building one-of-a-kind skis, tailored to the customers’ needs.
It was there that Kim learned to translate perceptions and feelings into specifications for skis like the turn radius, stiffness, and shape. Working at Wagner was the highlight of his ski bum career, of which he had spent nearly a decade previously working at various ski shops testing products, mounting bindings, and tuning skis.
Despite his love of gliding over snow, Kim’s one true love will always be climbing. He learned to climb in Indian Creek and Moab, which created a passion for long, adventurous routes requiring the use of traditional protection and creative problem solving. It was perhaps all of the cams clipped to his harness that started a long term obsession with gear.
A true Jack-of-all-trades, Kim has worked for a conservation corps, been a raft guide, taught children how to mountain bike and climb in a summer camp, manufactured custom skis, and worked on a ranch, all in the American Southwest.
Kim now flies helicopters and is an instructor pilot for Southern Utah University Aviation in Cedar City, Utah. However, on any day off he can be found skiing, biking, or climbing and contributing reviews to GearJunkie.
Climbing the NIAD (Nose In A Day) on El Capitan
Climbing a Birthday Challenge in Indian Creek
Completing the Telluride 50 MTB Race
Skiing El Diente Peak
Helping Oprah get off of a chairlift
A Word from Albert Kim
I began my life outdoors in an unconventional fashion. I dropped out of college and left everything I owned to move to Monticello, Utah. There, I worked for a conservation corps to associate myself with nature as much as possible. Before I knew it, I moved to Telluride, Colorado, with five different outdoor hobbies and all of the gear to go with that lifestyle.
Cool gear is exciting and sometimes lovely to behold, but I particularly enjoy thrashing equipment while pushing it and myself to the limit. “Tools, not jewels,” I always say. I suppose this makes me the perfect gear tester, although it was not a path I sought out. What I mean is, do what you truly love to do and the rest will fall into place. I love climbing, skiing, mountain biking, swimming, taking cool photos, road tripping, dogs, and gardening.