And so it begins!

Day 1 – Gulf Islands National Park (McDonald Provincial Park), Vancouver Island. Distance today: ~50km

Finally the ride is underway. A few false starts, delays and anxieties about leaving, but now I have pedalled away from Vancouver. And it being Vancouver, it was raining when I left. Nice touch. However, by the time I got to Tswwassen for the Island ferry the sun was out, a breeze was up (which I had certainly noticed earlier when riding into it) and things seemed much brighter.

I found a few people eager to know where I was going, fellow bikers I met headed to or from the ferry. A bunch of guys embarking on a big ride of their own across Canada, and a very helpful lady heading home (on her Surly LHT no less) to Victoria.

However, now that it’s underway, the scale of the trip is beginning to hit home. A bike that somehow gets forever heavier; traipsing and backtracking for the campsite; unpacking; setting up the tent; remembering that this is a more simple existence, or should be if I wasn’t worrying about how I’m going to pack up again…it’s a day of very mixed feelings and although I’m glad that finally the trip has started, I have a heavy heart thinking of the complications and perhaps less glamourous parts of the journey. I think it’s just something to get used to. Shedding a few pounds from my bike will certainly help, if I can (eating all the food doesn’t count…)

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Edna

Yesterday I posted a couple of pictures of my laden bike and alluded to her name, Edna. Wonder where I got the inspiration for that?

Well, Edna Ruth Byler pretty much started the Fair Trade movement in North America, way back in 1946. She pioneered what has grown into the modern day Ten Thousand Villages stores that are in major cities across the continent.

Here’s to you, Edna (the person) and the impact your actions have had in the world! For more info visit

http://www.tenthousandvillages.ca/cgi-bin/category.cgi?item=pageAboutUs1&type=store