Video – Colborne Man’s Cross Canada Cycling Journey For Sick Kids Starts May 1

In Local

A Cramahe Township man is embarking on a bicycle journey across Canadian raising money for Sick Kids Hospital.

Twenty-eight-year-old Ryan Mitchell will be heading out on Wednesday, May 1, 2024 and travelling across Canada. The total distance will be over 4,500 kilometres and ending 45 days later in Abbottsford, British Columbia.

Today’s Northumberland caught up with him while he was training, cycling from Colborne to Port Hope and back.

Mitchell who just lives north of Colborne said like so many others he’s been touched by cancer and wants to do something for Sick Kids.

“Everyone has been affected by cancer one way or another. My grandpa – I lost him to cancer, my mom had breast cancer and she beat it and my best friend Nelson Lumley, I lost him when he was 18-years-old.”

“I never realized how bad it was until I grew up and started seeing everybody being affected by it.”

Last year he picked up cycling doing 10 kilometres a day, then 20 kilometres, then 30 kilometres.

One day he rode to Oshawa and back and just loves cycling now.

He took in the Sick Kids Great Cycle Challenge in 2023 riding to Montreal and back raising just under $2,000 and hasn’t looked back.

“I’m not that great a biker, but anybody can do it. And one person can make a really great difference – you just have to get up and do something.”

Since taking up the sport Mitchell feels a lot healthier saying his legs are like bricks.

Since he started cycling he’s stopped smoking and lives a healthier lifestyle.

Sick Kids has a event called The Ultimate Cycling Challenge, but Mitchell said he wanted to do his own thing,

With the help of Sick Kids everything is set up for anyone who would like to donate to the cause.

Last year he rode to Montreal on a single speed bike which he says, was a “hell of a time.”

This year he’s saved up to buy a bike that has gears which should make the trip easier going through the Rocky Mountains.

Each time Mitchell goes for a training ride he carries his gear with him on the bike including a sleeping bag, tent, inflatable pillow, camping stove, pots and pans, clothes, book, extra set of shoes and a few accessories.

Mitchell wants to reach out to as many people online as he can, so when he goes across Canada people can help with donations and follow his journey.

The biggest hurdle he expects will be the weather.

“I’ve already looked at the weather and the first three or four days it’s supposed to rain.”

“But as long as I stay dry, I won’t freeze, I’ll be alright.”

Mitchell said he’s gone from being homeless, having no job and being addicted to drugs to almost being fully booked up for months as a tattoo artist and completely sober from drugs.

Mitchell said it’s going to be a challenge, “but I’m definitely looking forward to it.”

“I had the time of my life last time – and it’s going to be fun this time.”

For anyone who wants to follow Ryan’s journey follow him on Instagram or TikTok @cycle.canada or the Mitchell’s link at Sick Kids.

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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