cyclists prepare for the MS bike tour

A bike tour classic

Summer may be a long way away yet, but those seeking an adventure on their two-wheeled steed now have a new tour to mark on their calendars.

Summer may be a long way away yet, but those seeking an adventure on their two-wheeled steed now have a new tour to mark on their calendars.

The West Kootenay Glacier Challenge: A Heritage Tour is the new Multiple Sclerosis bike tour coming to the area this August. One of 26 MS bike tours in Canada, the fundraising event will take cyclists through the West Kootenay on a historic route.

“We’re really excited about the tour,” said Leona Dimock, fundraising co-ordinator for the West Kootenay chapter of the MS Society of Canada.

“We’re hoping to not only attract locals, but people from outside our region who want to experience a bike tour in the West Kootenay.”

After placing a proposal with the national office, the West Kootenay Chapter received approval to host the bike tour last November.

“We had to jump through a number of hoops, but we got approval so we’re pretty excited,” said Dimock, adding that in the West Kootenay it’s a given that a bike tour would be successful.

Dimock said the organization needed to find additional funding to continue supporting their chapter services.

“We’ll continue to do all our other fundraising events and this is an additional one because of economic times, it’s harder and harder to get donations.”

The two-day pledge event, beginning on August 18, starts in New Denver and goes to Nelson via Slocan. On the second day the tour travels from Nelson back to New Denver via Kaslo.

Dimock said the tour is the longest MS bike tour in Canada. Participants will be supported along the entire route with refreshments and lunch as well as dinner and entertainment during their overnight stay in Nelson.

“We’ll also be providing information and insight to the riders about the history of the area that they’ll be touring,” said Dimock.

Those interested in registering for the event can do so at msbiketours.ca as an individual or in a team. The current early-bird registration fee is $25, and if participants register during the week of Valentines Day, they will receive a $5 gift card to either Oso Negro or Tim Hortons.

The MS Society provides services not only for those who have MS, but for their families, caregivers or anyone affected by MS.

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