An interview with Keegan Smith

What outdoor activity is your passion?


How did you get involved in that activity, and how old were you when you started?
I grew up on a farm with hills, forests, and streams. My little brother and I would spend hours on adventures and fort-building missions. As I grew older, I’ve wandered farther from home - - But exploring doesn’t require epic missions to exotic lands. It can be as simple as an afternoon stroll near home, with your eyes and mind open!


What was the most epic trip you’ve ever taken?
Hmm. There are a few trips that would fit in the “epic” category, for different reasons. (Well, okay, mostly all for the same reason - - My lack of planning or overly-optimistic assessment of required time and effort.)
One of the most fantastic trips (despite a surprising lack of misery or mishaps) was a journey into the Great Bear Rainforest with my lovely partner, Christine, and dear friend Adrian. We launched sea kayaks from Kitimat, BC, and spent days paddling and hiking though a landscape full of eagles, mountains, and enormous trees. We paddled for hours with a huge pod of humpback whales, and watched the tiniest of streams fill with so many spawning salmon they seemed to be almost overflowing with fish. Nobody cried on that trip, but it was pretty good anyway.


What is the most important piece of gear in your pack? (other than AKU footwear, of course!)
Man, tough question. Headlamp? It’s got to be a headlamp. Even when I’m planning to be home before dark.


Where do you hope your AKUs will take you in the future?
I can already tell that these boots are going to last me for YEARS, and lots of adventures. Maybe the Yukon next summer?


What AKU boots are you currently wearing?
“Utah Top” for work in the mountains and heavier trips. Tengu Lite for day trips and scrambles. Love them both.