When planning my ride for 2019, we wanted to do something closer to home and find a way to give back to the community that has been so supportive. We decided to focus on getting people out on the Olympic Discovery Trail (ODT). It's my home trail. So our goal was to show people the beauty of the North Olympic Peninsula, get them outside, examine the accessibility of the whole trail, and raise some money for the Peninsula Trails Coalition which benefits the ODT. It seemed like easy planning. We didn't have to drive across the state, figure out lodging for 10+ nights, or deal with all the logistical challenges that a cross state ride brings. As it turned out, planning the S2S was more challenging than any of my previous rides.
This was our first time planning a lengthy, multi-day group ride. We wanted to provide aid stations at regular intervals, have swag related to the ride, get sponsors, and provide shuttling for anyone, anywhere, anytime if they needed it. We know our area is remote and logistics can be difficult, so we wanted everyone to know that we would take care of them and get them where they needed to be. This required finding lots of volunteers and organizing everything down to a T so everyone could be on the same page. It was mindbending. Fortunately, with the help of some amazing people, we were able to wrap our head around what needed to be done and turned this whole idea into a reality. Really big thanks to my amazing grandma, Beverly Dawson, Gary Weber, Lorrie Mittman, Josh Sutcliffe, Terry Gallagher, Buddy Depew, and of course my beautiful girlfriend, Celina Smith. Then there is one person who deserves a blog post entirely dedicated to her because of the amazing time and energy she put into this. I'm speaking of my mom, Teena Woodward. This whole thing would've never got off the ground without her. Thanks Mom!
The route we planned was the entirety of the completed sections of the ODT. It's currently over 70 miles and we wanted to encourage cyclists and non-wheelchair users to do parts that weren't so accessible. The ride began Friday, August 23, about 10 miles West of Lake Crescent just off Highway 101, at a trailhead called Camp Creek. It would finish a couple days later on Sunday, August 25 in Port Townsend.
It was an exciting three days. If you want to read the whole story, stay tuned! I'll be posting all about day one's adventures tomorrow.