Crazy hikers inspire Cancer fundraisers

The Crazy Hikers were not going to let the COVID-19 pandemic stop them from raising thousands of dollars for Cancer research.

This year marked the 16th annual Ride2survive a one-day fundraising event whereby cyclers ride from Kelowna to Delta riding 400k – all supported by the Delta Police who safely escort the riders. The ride has raised $9 million over the years.

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When that event, slated for June 20 was cancelled, the Crazy Hikers (almost 50 people) decided to do something different and walked 100k in one day from South Vancouver, Richmond, Delta, Tsawwassen and back to South Vancouver.

“This was all under the Ride2survive umbrella,” said Vicki Kunzli, who has been a participant of Ride2survive for 16 years. “The group inspired eight independent social distancing fundraising fitness challenge groups. We are continuing to raise money for Cancer research with zero cost coming off the donation dollars to put these events on.”

Ladner resident David Peerless kicked the fundraising and fitness challenge off with his own 400k bike ride on June 20. He has raised $13,000.

The Crazy Hikers started at midnight and finished 21 hours later with 10 walkers completing 100k, 10 walkers 50k and 25 walkers 25k. They raised $23,000.

The Crazy Hikers started in South Vancouver, walked through Richmond, then to Ladner via River Road, to Tsawwassen, back along the mud bay dyke, and through the bog back over the Alex Fraser Bridge to Richmond and over the Knight Street Bridge back to their start location.

Organized by Surinder Sadhra, North Delta resident Rich Gestle was one of the 100k walkers.

He said it was harder than riding a bike 400k. Gestle has done the Ride2survive annual ride 13 times.

Carol Peters, another North Delta resident, raised $4,100.

She started her walk on Friday, June 26 at 4 a.m. and finished on Saturday, June 27 at 2:30 a.m. walking 22.5 hours. She completed 16k loops in her neighbourhood from Panorama Ridge to 92nd and through her Sunwood neighbourhood.

She rode the Ride2survive in 2011.

“These were all huge walks in one day,” added Kunzli. “It was a grueling challenge both physically and mentally. Lots of blisters, sore knees, sore feet, sore legs and sore backs, but completely successful events.”

Kunzli said they have nine events inspired by the Crazy Hikers planned between June 20 and Sept. 9 from Vancouver Island to Alberta. The fundraising goal is $100,000 and the group is at almost $60,000 from three completed events and six more to go.

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