Climate Ride: A Sustainable Conference on Wheels
A traditional road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway provides many “oohs” and “ahhs” along the majestic ocean, and for good reason. The turquoise water and rolling hills encourage exploration around every twist in the road. Yet, through a 320-mile bike journey, I’ve learned that all senses are heightened when on two wheels. Our dynamic team of four women joined Climate Ride, a charitable bike ride, in an effort to fight climate change. Every rider took on the rugged terrain of winding roads with one mission in our hearts: sustainability.
Afternoon sun in the Avenue of the Giants.
The epic trip began in the heart of Northern California where towering Redwoods only let sprinkles of sunlight hit the pavement. Everyone jumped off their bikes to hug a tree and listen to the surrounding wildlife celebrating the day.
Day two welcomed us with a steep 1,400 foot climb, summiting the famous Leggett Hill and dropping us into a 13-mile descent to the coastline. My favorite part of the entire trip was making the last turn before the coastline and feeling and smelling the fresh ocean air. Lunch on the bluffs of Mendocino offered the best scenery we could ask for, with sunshine and wildflowers lining our path.
Day three marked our half-way point, with seemingly endless coastal views and twisted cypress trees guiding our route. All the riders zipped along the Russian River, rode up corkscrew hills and battled the windy coast, where our name evolved to be the ‘Wind Riders of 2013.’
An early morning departure from Duncan Mills kicked off our 4th day of riding, with vineyards and wineries drenching the landscape. It was highly suggested to stop off and wine taste en route to Point Reyes Station. Oyster shucking at Tomales Bay and ice cream eating in Guerneville were also stopping points along our enjoyable journey.
With adrenaline buzzing and positivity pumping,on our last day we gathered at 5:30 a.m. to make our final ascent into San Francisco, cruising through Stinson Beach and Sausalito before rolling over the Golden Gate Bridge, where we celebrated our safe and beautiful ride with others.
Please share the road.
This bike ride provided more than just funds to environmental non-profits. It gave me hope that the world can change for the better, and made me excited to be a part of a movement geared toward a sustainable future. Climate Ride gave each rider a community to become a part of, and it proved that bike advocacy is important worldwide.
I can guarantee that I saw more smiles on that trip than I’ve ever seen in a car or airplane. The joy and enthusiasm were infectious, and not just those 5 days. To learn more about Climate Ride, and how you can become part of the movement, join the New York to D.C. ride, or stay tuned for the 2014 adventures. This experience, known as the legendary ‘sustainable conference on wheels’, is now a place where environmental activists and enthusiasts can share stories of success and passion with others.
Home sweet home!