It was a record-busting gold medal performance by CASA’s annual Minds Over Mountains Cycle Tour.
This year’s spectacular eight-day ride from Jasper, Alberta to Haida Gwaii, on British Columbia’s gorgeous west coast, set records for participation and fundraising.
In all, 43 riders and 16 support crew made the eight-day trek, which included overnight stops in Jasper, Terracana, Prince George, Houston, New Hazelton, Terrace, Prince Rupert and Queen Charlotte City.
The final fundraising total has not yet been disclosed, but it’s expected to be close to $300,000, says CASA Foundation Executive Director Nadine Samycia.
“We made our goal of $250,000, so we’re really happy. But donations are still coming in daily, so the final numbers keep going up,” she says.
“Some cyclists will be doing some fundraising over the summer months and they’ve got events planned around that. So I’d expect the final number to be closer to $300,000. We raised $150,000 last year so that would be almost double last year’s total.”
If so, it would also mark the most successful year ever for the event, in terms of both the number of participants and total dollars raised. Even the weather cooperated for this year’s tour.
Haida Gwaii Artist and cyclist Ben Davidson, Camgill Tour sponsor and cyclist, Neil MacGillvray and cyclist Miles Cymbaluk pose at the end of the route at Mile Zero in Masset, BC.
“It was good. We had some rain but it was just in spurts. We didn’t have any heavy downpours for long periods,” she says.
“That always makes it harder because you wind up eating that gravel off the pavement and you get pretty dirty. But fortunately, that wasn’t a big issue this year.”
In fact, Edmonton recorded more rainfall over the course of the eight-day event than most tour stops in B.C.
“I’d call my wife Wendy every day while we were on the road and she would always tell me it was raining back in Edmonton, so I guess we escaped just in time,” says cyclist Allan Mayer.
Participants in this year’s event were welcomed back home July 3rd when Edmonton Journal columnist and longtime CASA supporter Nick Lees hosted his annual Pinot OnThe Patio event at the Royal Glenora Club.