Pedal Your Bike, Power the Movement

Based in the bike-friendly US town of Missoula – also home to the Adventure Cycling Association – Climate Ride is a non-profit organization that runs a growing series of fundraising events around the country that support sustainability, active transportation, green energy and environmental causes.

A series of multi-day rides – typically covering 40-80 miles a day – encourage participants to take a “direct action to grow the sustainability and active transportation movements, helping to provide much-needed financial support, raising awareness, engaging other humans, and helping to build a national network of supporters.”

Exploring the mighty redwoods of Northern California

Exploring the mighty redwoods of Northern California

As such, Climate Ride has a number of goals. Each event helps generate cash for projects working on climate change, clean energy, active transportation and public health. Just as importantly, the rides also help boost awareness of such issues amongst the general public, while promoting the notion that bikes provide the perfect component for a green transport infrastructure. Additionally, the rides themselves serve as timely reminders to take responsibility for our individual carbon footprints. This year, there are three to choose from, with an eventual aim to develop a global network of Climate Rides in the future.

Connecting with like-minded individuals while promoting a worthy cause

Connecting with like-minded individuals while promoting a worthy cause

2015’s rides take place in some of the most beautiful and historic parts of the country. For those keen to discover the West Coast, there’s a 329-mile ride through the mighty redwoods and wine country of Northern California, before crossing across the iconic Golden Gate Bridge to San Francisco. Over on the North Atlantic, there’s a 5-day, 320-mile route from Maine’s rocky coastline to Boston. And in between, a Midwest ride spans three states and connects the two vibrant cities of Grand Rapids and Chicago, providing an introduction to some of Michigan’s 2,600 miles of multi-use trails – pedalling past historic lighthouses, blueberry farms and craft breweries.

Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge on the West Coast Ride

Crossing the Golden Gate Bridge on the West Coast Ride

But Climate Rides are more than just cycling. Each tour also provides a chance to learn, connect and share with like-minded individuals. As part of each event, riders have the opportunity to meet key individuals working in the fields of green energy and sustainability, via a series of inspirational talks each evening. Topics covered include renewable energy, climate science and bicycle infrastructure.

Great riding during the day, and a chance to learn more about living sustainability each evening

Great riding during the day, and a chance to learn more about sustainable living each evening

As a non-profit organization, the cost to participate is a nominal $100 – covering everything from accommodation to mechanical support to route planning to food to nightly talks – in return for committing to a fundraising minimum of $2800. And the causes? Riders can choose from more than 100 projects across the country, from community-based, local bike coalitions to national networks – with a full list of worthy beneficiaries available on the Climate Ride website, including the Alliance for Biking and Walking, Bikes Not Bombs, the Adventure Cycling Association, World Bicycle Relief and many, many more.

Ride your bike – and raise cash and awareness for bike projects around the country at the same time

Ride your bike – and raise cash and awareness for bike projects around the country at the same time

All images copyright Climate Ride