2019 National Rider Blogs

Follow our National Riders and Volunteers as they embark on this incredible 18 day journey across Canada on behalf of childhood cancer. Follow their stories and see how it impacts their lives:


 

NKCR day 14 and 15.

Day 14  – Levis to Kamarouska Our day started off with breakfast at the Louis Garneau head office in St. Augustine Quebec. We were joined by Louis himself.  We shuttled from there to our start point in Levis. Our dedication for the day was read and our ride for the...
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Family

We are now on day 13 of the ride. And a lucky 13 it was, as our day was finally graced with sunshine, a kind breeze and more monarchs than I could count. Also, for the second day in a row I felt surrounded by the love of family. From...
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NKCR Day 13 – Kingston to Cornwall (172k)

This morning started in the GoodLife parking lot in Kingston where our convoy parked overnight, with access to the 24hr. facility for hot showers…yahoo! Our breakfast was hosted across the street by the good people at Eggspress, who laid out a great spread for us.  Our morning dedication this morning...
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NKCR 2019 – Day 13- Kingston to Cornwall

Today was a bittersweet day… I’m still trying to come to grips with where the needle lands on the gauge of sadness and happiness. There were three dedications this morning, and each one cascaded upon each other like a tidal wave of emotion smashing through the group and myself…. Isabella...
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NKCR – Day 12 and 13

DAY 12  – McMaster Childrens Hospital to Toronto Sick Kids. We rode from the overnight stay location at Hamilton Yacht club to McMaster Childrens Hospital. So great to see Lisa after missing her since our stop near Abbotsford BC.  Her and Sandra made the trek down from Huntsville.  They followed...
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NKCR day 13

Camden, Grant and Jessica. Angels now after cancer. It was Jessica birthday today. Her mom Jen is our incredible crew chief. We had an amazing ride after a stop at the Kingston Children’s hospital ward. This is Stacey’s country and today there were so many butterflies on out ride. Dinner...
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NKCR Day 13 – Speed

One of the amazing thing about the National Kids Cancer Ride is the speed at which it goes by. We just got started, and already there are only 5 days remaining. It seems like yesterday that we were in Langley BC getting together as a team for the first time,...
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Day 12 Hamilton to Kingston

Never underestimate the power & influence of the human spirit…..anyone can make change- we all have it in us but the power of many can go a long way. I have joined in this fight against kids cancer with a passion because I have seen shit that I don’t want...
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NKCR 2019 – Day 12- Hamilton to Toronto

It was a late night rolling in, and an early morning to get the wheels in motion. Our first stop was the Hamilton McMaster Children’s Hospital, which is the base camp for our fellow rider and paediatric oncologist Dr. Stacey Marjerrison (I apologize if I’ve already said it but if...
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NKCR Day 12 – Sick Kids

Today is a kind of special NKCR day. We ride as a group, with a large number of friends and wheel family into Sick Kids in Toronto. As in 2017, we had a police escort for our last leg, this time from Humber College down the Lakeshore, and up to...
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NKCR Day 10 and 11

Day 10 – Marathon to Wawa Another day of rain and strong easterly winds (up to 60km gusts) kept us from completing our planned route today . We shuttled from Marathon to Wawa making our planned stops along the way. We improvised and had a little fun at our lunch...
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Day 9 -Atikokan to Thunder Bay, Ont

Today was a great day but totally emotional.  We started off at the wonderful Native community of Atikokan.  Every year we stop here & we are treated to the best steel cut oatmeal I have ever had. I don’t even like oatmeal but I sure like this!  Maybe it’s the...
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NKCR day 10 and 11 – Water

Bruce Lee taught us to be like water: “Don’t get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup; You put water into a...
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NKCR Day 10 – Marathon to Wawa

Friday the 13th turned out to be unlucky for us as we awoke in Marathon to pouring rain, which had been pounding on the metal roof of our travelling dormitory (a 53’ long x 8’ wide transport trailer with bunk beds for 20 people) most of the night.  With our...
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NKCR 2019 – Day 9 – Atikokan to Thunder Bay

This mornings dedication was given by Frank Molinari for Sean, another child who became an Angel at the age of 13.  His journey was chronicled in the book ‘10 needles’ (https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B0070ZY22U/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_awdo_tWTEDbAB762D7) Since his initial diagnosis at the age of six until his passing, he had: More than 1,000 painkiller cocktails...
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NKCR day 9 – Family

As riders on the NKCR we have two kinds of family. Our “regular” family (our relatives) and our wheel family. Our wheel family are the people we develop bonds with on the ride, who we depend on to get us through the day both on and off the road. In...
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NKCR – Day 7 & Day 8

Day 7 dedication was read by Lynn. This day we rode for Ty. As usual an emotional start to our day. Day 8 dedication was for Amara. We met Amara and her family at the Winnipeg cancer centre at the end of day 7. Amara’s mom, dad and brother were...
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NKCR Day 8 – Faith on the Rocks

Today we tranitioned from the flat of the prairies to the rolling hills and exposed granite of the Canadian Shield. It was good to be out of the saddle more, stretching our legs and climbing a bit. The roads were also smoother than yesterday, and while it was still cool...
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Day 7- Glenboro MB to Kenora, Ont

What a full day! Living Life Large on the road. Living for today & making it count. The day brought irony, adventure , beauty, children’s laughter & then raw sadness again. Let’s start with the beauty….. hellloooo Manitoba!  A province of fields, grain towers, long straight roads & wonderful community...
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NKCR Day 7 – Glenboro to Winnipeg (154k)

We woke up this morning in Glenboro, Manitoba, where our travelling caravan was parked overnight outside of the community centre. It had rained most of last night and there was still a slight drizzle. Breakfast was prepared and served by our volunteer crew after which we convened inside the community...
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NKCR team 2 day 7

Prairie winds have not been kind to us this year. We battled head and cross winds, rain and some of Manitoba’s finest roads to get to cancer care Manitoba. And then I saw reality when we met a family undergoing treatment for their beautiful daughter with a very difficult prognosis....
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NKCR day 7 – Pain

As riders we all go through some pain. We have sore legs, butts, necks, wrists, etc. from riding day after day. We have covered more than 1,000 km since we began our ride at White Rock 7 short days ago. I am no stranger to pain, having dealt with hip...
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Day 5 Swift Current to Regina

Boy the prairies are flat indeed…..you can see for miles & miles…..check out the views…it’s a delight to see the trains carrying wheat & the grain silos & wheat fields. The grasshoppers were bouncing & the butterflies were flittering. Beautiful sights indeed stretching as far as your eyes can see....
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NKCR Day 6 – What’s worse?

Today was a shorter day than planned. We rode a total of 73 of the planned 200 km today. We had colder temperatures, dropping down to around 8 C, rain and a strong facing crosswind. We rode to our first rest break (59 km), where we met with kids at...
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NKCR Day 5 – Chaplin to Reigina

A heartfelt and tearful dedication by Gerry for James – who we lost in 2013 Another challenging day in the prairies with both headwinds and side winds but another beautiful sunny day. Our team worked well together and shared the load. Great lunch stop in Moosejaw. The support we have...
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Day 4 Lethbridge to Swift Current

Today was filled with children greeting us- Best day ever! To see healthy children living their lives fully is a bliss for me to see. The riders started off from Lethbridge this morning. Weather was very windy & I know they were using all their core muscles to stay on...
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Day 3 Lake Louise to Calgary

Today started off with the most exquisite sunrise in Lake Louise. The beauty of the area was incredible & gave me an exhilarating high. We took in the surroundings & got some great team photos. It was so beautiful. It reminded me of what life has to offer & I...
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Day 4

Who days prairies are flat? We climbed more day 4 than day 1 riding between lethbridge and medicine hat! Rivers have carved out crazy valleys which make for spectacular scenery in a big sky. Such a big sky.

NKCR Day 4 – Three “C’s”

Today the roads started to flatten out as we left the Rockies and moved into the prairies. We started the day with a dedication by 2019 NKCR rider Omar, for his daugher Jocelyn. Jocelyn is a cancer survivor, so this was a happier ending than others, but she still has...
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NCKR Day 3 – Lake Louise to Calgary

Dedication…. Today’s dedication was for Briony. It is the 10th anniversary year of Briony’s passing. Her Mom Lynn read the dedication. This is Lynn’s 3rd National Ride in honor of her daughter. Lynn also read us a letter that Briony wrote that she found after her passing. There were no...
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NKCR Day 3 – Wheel Family

Today we began our ride at Lake Louise, for a spectacular day of riding down towards Calgary. If I had to define today, it was a day for my wheel family, both old and new, people who are so incredibly important to us. The day began early with breakfast in...
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Day 2- Vernon to Lake Louise

Holy moly- I am exhausted & it’s only day 2…..how can that be? I suspect it’s in part from jumping up & down to cheer on the cyclists, cooking for 40 people at a time, early mornings & late nights…. but most likely the emotions that we all encounter during...
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NKCR Day 2 – Vernon to Revelstoke (155k)

After a hearty group breakfast, the second day of our ride started with the daily dedication. Tassia was 12 years old when she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a parent’s worse nightmare. She endured numerous rounds of chemotherapy at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, and bravely accepted every...
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Day 1

White Rock to Hope to Vernon. Beautiful roads (out of the city), beautiful scenery along the Fraser river, terrific teams of riders and volunteers. Day 1 was awesome. Thank you.

NKCR 2019 – Day 1 – White Rock to Hope

The day started off with organized chaos and excitement as riders, volunteers, and coordinators packed up and headed to White Rock to start our journey. Everyone started off going about the task of finding two beach rocks to carry along with them across the country… the first rock is to...
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Day 1 – White Rock to Hope

Yahoooo! The National Kids Cancer Ride has begun! After 4 days of preparing, training, organizing & team building…we are on the road! What an incredible group of people, all like-minded embarking on an epic journey to cycle across Canada with the aim to eradicate children’s cancer. We are a determined...
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National Kids Cancer Ride Day One

We started our day in Beautiful White Rock BC. Our day started (as we will every day)  by dedicating our ride to a child and family affected by Cancer. Patrick Sullivan  (a member of the board of Governor’s for Coast to Coast Against Cancer Foundation) gave a heartwarming talk about...
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NKCR Day 1 – #whyweride

Today we began the National Kids Cancer Ride in ernest after a couple of days of training and orientation, including a ride to BC Children’s Hospital where we met with a family undergoing treatment and learned about some of the new options for cancer treatments for kids. We started at...
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NKCR Day 1 – White Rock to Hope (150k)

Our cycling adventure officially started today at the beach in White Rock where we celebrated the kickoff of the 2019 edition of the National Kids Cancer Ride. This event, which was first held in 2008, has raised over $10 million for paediatric oncology research. On a beautiful September morning, our...
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NKCR 2019 – BC Children’s Hospital

Today started off with a thought provoking and inspirational dedication by Dr. Stacey Marjerrison, who is a pediatric oncologist and fellow National Rider.  She shared the story of Anya Martinez and her family who bravely battled but unfortunately succumbed to Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.  She provided a great overview of how...
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Training Ride to the B.C. Children’s Hospital

We are very fortunate to have Dr. Stacey Marjerrison as one of the riders on our team. Stacey is a Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist at the McMaster Children’s Hospital in Hamilton. After our breakfast this morning, Stacey gave us a high-level overview of the different types of leukemia, including acute lymphocytic leukemia...
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BCCH

Awesome team ride to BCCH today. Rider Dr. Stacey introduced her colleague Dr. Rod who explained that funds raised for the national kids cancer ride goes to one of 16 special hospitals where leading edge research is making a difference in predicting and treating kids cancers. Riding a bike is...
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Orientation and Team Building

Since arriving in Vancouver, our National Kids Cancer Ride team of riders and volunteers (about 40 people in total) have been busy preparing for this epic cycling adventure. Our “caravan” includes 4 RVs, 2 cube vans, 2 passenger vans and an 18-wheeler transport truck. In addition to the 16 riders,...
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Safely to YVR

Phew. Bike is together and the one way trip to Vancouver was slick. 15 riders, 20+ volunteers and CTC staff getting ready to roll. East…

Let the Adventure Begin!

After almost two years of planning, fundraising and training, the 2019 edition of the National Kids Cancer Ride is officially underway, and I couldn’t be more excited! As many of you are aware, I had planned to participate in this epic cycling event last year, but the ride was cancelled...
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Off to Vancouver

I’m on my flight to Vancouver. The ‘oh dear, what did I sign up for?’ feeling seems to be lifting, and in its place is just a wish that I won’t hold up my team. The thing is, I’m pretty new to cycling. I’ve always biked around – to my...
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Thank YOU!

It takes a whole lot of people to get us across the country, and I’m sure we will talk about the organization and our sponsors over the next few weeks but I wanted to take a few minutes to reflect on the people that helped me personally make it to...
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NKCR 2019 – It’s almost time!

Hard to believe that in a few days time I will join my fellow riders in the Vancouver area to begin our cross country journey to raise awareness and funds supporting Children’s Cancer Research and family programs. I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has supported my...
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A little more than 5 Days….

In less than a week the 2019 National Kids Cancer Ride (the NKCR) kicks off, and we will begin our ride across Canada to raise funds and awareness for childhood cancer research. Up to this point, it has been a whirlwind of training rides, fundraising, and dealing with the insanity...
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A little more cowbell

Cowbell brewery in Blyth, ON. So cool.Cowbell was a bright spot in my last long ride before the NKCR.I spent over 6 hours battling with a strong and persistent headwind and this guy to stay on my bike. Ridiculous. Kept going back to the kids who don’t have an option...
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Tapering

So the work has been done. Now it’s time to rest, ensure mental state is right and gear is in top shape for the ride across.I’m taking time to spend time with folks important to me and who have helped me with this adventure.9 sleeps until Vancouver. 11 sleeps before...
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10 Years Ago…

10 years ago I had the privilege of being an itinerant teacher for Sarah Fairbairn while she was undergoing treatment for AML (Acute Myeloid Lukemia) at LHSC. Sadly, Sarah passed away a year later in 2010. She would be turning 24 years old on August 21st. Yesterday, during a visit...
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Summary from week 31

400km for week 31. Body and bike continue to just work. I rode alot in the Niagara Region this week and could spend hours watching the ships going through the locks around Thorold. Incredible yet simple engineering. Brilliant!! Bikes and grapes. Also brilliant. I’ve spent 50 hours chasing that guy...
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Atlantic TFK

Wow. Great routes. Incredible views. Unforgettable people all volunteering and working to change the status quo for kids and families with cancer. Shout out to my new monster friend Ben. Thanks for looking after my gear and helping me with so much local knowledge! Charlotte get on that bike to...
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Love to ride to ride

2 wheels is a passion for me. Its challenging, exciting and yet relaxing, calming. Today it was just plain hot! Riding a scooter to go for a bicycle ride is so great. I’m priveledged. #beyondkidscancer

Alberta TFK

Wow. 3 days of incredible riding on some of the most scenic roads in Canada. The reason for the ride is to raise money specifically for research for children’s cancers. The start of each day came with another gut twisting story about cancer impacting a child and a family. It...
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July 8

Over 400km since July 1 and all systems are a go. Long solo rides challenge the brain and the body but the coast to coast cause ensures a focus to push through. Super excited to be traveling west for the tour for kids Alberta this weekend. Ride safely. Ride long....
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July 1, 2019

The preparation is getting real with 2 months left until we leave from Vancouver enroute to Halifax. July is going to be a busy and long month in the saddle. Easy and pain free compared to others though. Ride on.