What We're Cycling For, and Where We're Headed - Grampies on the Go - CycleBlaze

March 8, 2011

What We're Cycling For, and Where We're Headed

A major life change occurred several years ago as our kids started to marry and scatter to other places. The really big change, however, was the arrival in 2008 of our first grandchildren, twin delights Avi and Violet.

Avi and Violet live in Montana, where our daughter is a professor at the University and our son in law will soon complete his Ph.D. Our conviction is that our proper role as grandparents is to help give the children the best start in life, to impart to them any wisdom we forgot to impart to their parents, and to help the parents as much as possible as they cope with the busiest stage of their lives.

Avi and Violet - our treasures!
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Since we want to have that type of ongoing presence in the kids' lives, we have been making the 2 day trek from Vancouver Island to Montana every 6 weeks or so for the past several years in our VW van.

Now, a 3rd grandchild is due any day now to our son and daughter in law, who are in Montreal. We are just as eager to meet him/her, and no doubt will be launching quite a few Montreal treks in coming years. Where are we going? The Grampies on the Go will bicycle from our home on Vancouver Island to Montana (grandkid central #1) and then Montreal (grandkid central #2). We will be sure to pass through Winnipeg, to report to Avi and Violet's other set of grandparents .

Why are we abandoning the VW van in favour some (slightly) slower commuter bikes with BoB trailers? Last summer (2010) we went on a van trip to the Winnipeg Folk Festival. (Surprise - Avi and Violet also were at the festival). We brought Java, our Golden Retriever, our bikes and a kiddie trailer set up so Java could ride with us in style. The plan was to do a few small side trips in the Rockies, revisiting some of our favourite places that we had stayed at on previous car camping and also bicycle camping trips. In spite of not being in shape, being over 60 and not having been on a bicycle in ages we set off. To our surprise we found that we managed (Steve had the harder time since he was pulling 75 lb Java in the trailer) and actually enjoyed ourselves.

Java really enjoyed bike touring in Banff Park.
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Steve did not enjoy towing Java quite so much.
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Gradually the concept of a longer bike trip grew on us and we found ourselves talking about going across Canada in the summer of 2011. Now we are turning that talk into reality. In fact we are packed and ready to go. All we need now is for the snow to melt in the Cascades passes!

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