A 100-day, 8200-kilometre bicycle trip is about to start this weekend, right here in Victoria.
Skyler Roberts, an Ontario man who walked over 7000km across the United States last year, plans to cycle across Canada in an effort to raise money for Alzheimer’s research.
In an “ask me anything” on Reddit, the outdoor enthusiast said that while his journey on foot across the States was for himself, this one will be for Alzheimer’s, the disease that took a loved one earlier this year.
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“My grandfather (who passed away in January this year) had Alzheimer,” he said. “He was lucky enough to live to 99 years old, and it was only the last 5 or so years that it started. My last trip was for myself, this trip is for him.”
Roberts will embark on the trip with his best friend, though the two don’t have much cycling experience.
He included a link to a “rough” map of their route across Canada.
Relying on Kindness of Strangers
Throughout the journey, the two will rely on the kindness of others, some street smarts, and camping wherever possible. While traversing the United States, Roberts said he was struck by the constant empathy and kindness of strangers.
“I relied on the kindness of strangers every day,” he said. “I would sometimes have random people pull over, hand me a cold bottle of water or food, and drive off. This happened many times on my trip, for some of them I never even got a chance to tell them who I am or what I was doing, they just wanted to be kind to a stranger, not look for recognition.”
Over the course of the journey, he was often invited onto strangers’ properties, or even inside.
“Many times I’d camp in strangers yards, or be invited inside to eat with them,” he said. “I even slept inside the Mayor’s houses on two separate occasions.”
Given the perceived friendliness of Canadians, he may get a few more mayor’s homes to sleep in by the end of this trip.
And of course, one or two references to a song you might recognize.
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