By Joanna Friesen

‘My hopes for the climate ride’

The Climate Ride is nearly upon us! On Monday May 24, the support truck and trailer, meticulously packed with bikes and team gear, began its journey to Washington D.C. (Keep assistant leader Tyler Goss, and rider Caleb Schrock-Hurst, who are driving the vehicle, in your thoughts over the next few days.) A few days after that, David Landis and I will fly to Seattle ourselves and will be joined a couple days later by the rest of the riders.  

This week leading up to the trip, I find myself reflecting on the support and encouragement that so many people have already shown for the ride and I am filled with gratitude, excitement and hope. 

I also find myself reflecting on my own experiences bike touring in the past. I love bikes; I love traveling via bicycle. Through my past rides, I have seen how interacting with the world via bicycle has the potential to connect me with my body and spirit, and connect me with the landscape in a very real way.   Bike tours are a chance to build deep friendships, and have taught me a lot about navigating friendships when things “get real” like when it downpours or when riders get hungry. 

My hope for the climate riders this summer is that this will be a ride full of deep and rich experiences, new perspectives, fulfilling accomplishments, deepened friendships – and maybe even lead to a life-long love for cycling and bike-commuting! 

Having been on the planning end of this ride for months, I am eagerly anticipating seeing these plans realized: climate riders riding together, meeting with different communities along the way, connecting with people and seeing and camping in all the beautiful places on our map. 

Pairing bike touring with learning about climate change and climate justice to me is a match made in heaven. I am incredibly excited to be a part of the CSCS Climate Ride this summer.