Tour de Cariboo adds new, optional route

This year’s Tour de Cariboo will feature an added, optional twist.

This year’s Tour de Cariboo will feature an added, optional twist.

Normally a 76-kilometre bike ride from Williams Lake to Gavin Lake, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Williams Lake executive director Melissa Newberry has thrown a wrinkle into this year’s fundraising event.

“We’ve decided to add a 100-kilometre ride as an alternative route,” Newberry said. “The 76-kilometre route will be the same, but those wanting to do the 100 kilometre will ride another 12 kilometres down the road and there will be a marked turnaround point, then another 12 kilometres back to Gavin Lake.”

Newberry said the move comes after several past participants made the suggestion, noting a 100-kilometre ride is more of a classic distance for road bike races.

Another new option BBBS has added is allowing children 12 to 18 years old to participate with parental permission and supervision.

“If a family wants to participate as a relay team they could ride whatever distance they want to ride,” Newberry said. “It would be great if we got some school groups or sports groups to take part.”

Rest stops stationed along the route stocked with food and refreshments, along with a lunch stop at the Big Lake store, ensure riders are properly hydrated and replenished.

Once at Gavin Lake an afternoon and evening filled with rest and relaxation are on the agenda. For those with aches and pains, massage therapist Deb Russell-Nasby will be on hand. There will also be live entertainment provided.

Gavin Lake has full facilities including hot showers and recreational opportunities including canoeing, kayaking and fishing.

Heated cabins are available for participants to stay in overnight.

Riders are encouraged to stick around after the catered dinner for prizes, awards and good times around a campfire, Newberry added.

In 2015, a daunting $39,000 was raised by participants and all of the funds, Newberry said, stay in Williams Lake to support BBBS’s children’s programming.

This year’s Tour de Cariboo rides Sept. 10 and departs from the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex at 9 a.m. Anyone wishing to register can do so at www.bbswlake.com.

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