We're Off! Day 1 & 2

Our Climate Guides team has set out on the ride from Vancouver to San Francisco this week!

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In the dry, summer weeks leading up to our trip, we wished that rain would wipe away the wildfire smoke. (Climate change in full effect with 566 BC wildfires at once.). Luckily and unluckily, our first two days did just that! Day 1 and 2 were downpours for most of the day. We believe and hope it will clear the sky for better weather to come! 

Quick #s: 263 kilometres in two days, average speed 25km/hour, 4 flat tires. 

Our four-person, intergenerational team includes three riders and one support (my very own dad!). Already, this journey has tested our endurance and resilience. Our four flat tires have taught us a special kind of appreciation for our teammate and bike repair-expert Simon Vano, who joins us from Slovakia. 

 Simon Vano (left), teammate and bike-repair expert. 

Simon Vano (left), teammate and bike-repair expert. 

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On the road, the shoulders vary from full car sized to non-existant. We've been happily surprised by the effort American cars (mostly RVs & pickup trucks) have show to swerve around us. As we cycle through stunning Olympic National Park, the old-growth trees and lakes can be distracting. Our team keeps a steady pace, drafting closely behind each other. We stop when anyone needs a break or a pit spot. We've developed an intricate set of hand signals to indicate potholes, sticks and stops. 

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As we ride, I recognize the privilege in being able-bodied, able to take the time off and have a supportive family to travel this way. Throughout the ride, I hope to think of ways to engage more people in cycling and in climate action beyond barriers.  One way to join the ride remotely will be shared in an upcoming update! 

We try to draw parallels from this cycling trip to the taking climate action -- both are best done with an optimistic outlook, a supportive community and taking it day by day. At night, we set up camp and review our route for the next day. 

On that note, we'll update when we get wifi! 

- Caroline and the Climate Guides cycling team

Caroline Merner