Plenty of support for cross-Canada ride

Trip is expected to take three months

Above left

By the time you read this they will have already conquered the three biggest climbs of their journey across Canada, fuelled in part by the heartfelt send-off they got from family, friends and supporters.

Local fitness trainer and amazing motivator Wanetta Beal, 38, and her team, including riding partner, Brad Holmes from Nanaimo, shipped off Wednesday morning for the start of an epic 8,000 kilometer bike ride across Canada that began in Coombs and ends on the shores of St. John’s, Newfoundland.

The two will be making the ride across on a vegan diet — no cooked foods of any kind.

“Nervous,” Brad answered Tuesday morning when asked how he was feeling.

On Tuesday more than two dozen people turned out at One on One Fitness at Coombs Junction to send the team off on their final pre-ride. The plan was to ride to Departure Bay and back, then ship off on the first sailing Wednesday morning.

Brad says they have four big climbs to contend with in B.C. before hitting the friendlier terrains beyond, including Hope Slide and Richter Pass.

No stranger to pushing the limits of human endurance, last June Brad ran the length of New Brunswick (480 kms) in four days.

“This is different though,” he said, and admitted, “my ass doesn’t have a clue what it’s in for.”

The team will be sleeping in the two support vehicles along the way which have beds. 

Wanetta’s truck has been equipped with a T3 Recovery Mattress, the newest innovation in extreme sports meant to reduce recovery times for athletes.

“It retails for around $3,500 and it’s incredible; I’m so lucky,” Wanetta marvelled when asked about the bed. “Mark Nagra at M&N Furniture donated it — he wants me to test it out.” 

Driving the other support vehicle will be Wanetta’s niece Tayla Beal who also plans on doing a lot of riding as well (which will involve driving the truck up ahead, riding back to meet up and ride with the duo, then return to the truck).

Wanetta and Brad figure they’ll be on the road for about six hours a day. 

“I call it the billboard on wheels,” Liz Forrest smiled when asked about the lead vehicle covered with decals of sponsors that have made the trip possible. 

The easy going Forrest has a huge role in this journey, as she will be in charge of fuelling the riders with raw food and raw food supplements.

The trip is expected to take three months.

Wanetta looked relaxed and in great spirits as person after person shook her hand, hugged her and wished her and her team Godspeed.

To follow Riding Raw or to make a donation go to


Just Posted

Group aims to preserve French Creek tree

Save Estuary Land Society says bald eagles used tree for nest

Farewell to Parksville Beach Festival for 2019

People’s Choice Awards tallied, organizers report another successful year

UPDATE: Nanoose Bay residents miffed as roadwork on Northwest Bay Road causing long delays

‘I sat in traffic for a half-hour and moved approximately 50 feet’

Oceanside RCMP officer makes Alexa’s Team

Munro able to stop and process 15 impaired motorists during the past year

Oceanside Generals boost arsenal for coming VIJHL season

Coach Lemmon gets a good look at players at main camp

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft: RCMP

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Hearings begin as Vancouver Island mom fights for allegedly abducted daughter

Tasha Brown now in Jersey in the British Isles, fundraiser being held in Nanaimo

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

VIDEO: RCMP unveil new, state-of-the-art forensics lab in Surrey

The laboratory is expected to handle thousands of forensic services from across Canada annually

Scheer promises EI tax credit for new parents if Conservatives form government

The government currently taxes employment insurance benefits for new parents

Parksville man, 75, goes missing from north Nanaimo home

Police dog services called in to help with search

B.C. seizes 1.5M grams contraband tobacco, down from 5.75M grams the year prior

The 2019-2020 seizures were a sharp drop compared to the 2018-2019 year,

B.C. Speaker tight-lipped about aide’s legislature security tour

B.C. Liberals question Alan Mullen’s drive across Canada, U.S.

Most Read