Vancouver to Mexico: DONE!

2100 miles, 3 flats, one fall (Ross stuck in his kleets at a traffic light), a few tears (mostly Ross’s when he fell at the traffic lights), 38 packets of trail mix, too much coffee, and a few tails to tell the grandkids.

It’s not about the numbers though. It’s about living in the moment, about the stories, about the adventure. Being on the road with someone you love, with nothing more than a bike, a tent and a few spare t-shirts. The simple life is rewarding.

The road treated us well and the final ride was both a sad and happy trail. We’ll miss the people we have met, the wind in our faces and the ever changing scenery evolving in front of us. We’ll pack the bikes away very grateful for the dreams they helped us discover. On to the next chapter now though, a winter surfing in Costa Rica awaits. We will continue our blog so stay tuned and thank you to all our followers so far.

Here is a little 3 minute video highlighting the best bits from our adventures. http://youtu.be/b1cMvFjSCIM.

Doing the do

Our journey to Campovida, the venue of The Do Lectures USA;
Nosara to San Jose 5hr drive in a hire car for an overnight stay with old school friend Myfanwy Davies
San Jose to Los Angeles for breakfast
Los Angeles to San Francisco for lunch
San Francisco by bus and a final car journey to Campovida for dinner

We are back at the stunning winery and gardens at Campovida in Hopland, Sonoma, California. This is where Part One of our bike ride ended 6 weeks ago.

We are lucky enough to be a part of the awesome team organising and hosting The Do lectures USA . This series of talks will inspire the world to go and do something that they have always dreamed of. The speakers share their stories, the attendees get inspired, and the talks go online to the website linked above for the world to watch for free. We have both volunteered at The Do Lectures in Wales over the last four years, and when we found out we would be in northern California on our bike ride we made sure to time it with the Do Lectures USA. This is the third Do Lectures USA and we are so excited for the event to kick off on Thursday. Check out the 1 minute video which is a snapshot into the work it takes to get ready.

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Monkeying around

So, we are here in Costa Rica and I, Alice, am literally monkeying around. We spent our first ten days or so here looking at houses to rent from November to September, surfed every day and got to meet people in the community, get our bearings, sampled the local cuisine in Guiones and Nosara where we will be living this winter. Ross is shadowing the other surf coaches to learn the ropes here at Surf Simply, you can check out the video of his first week with customers here. I have been out and about looking for work in the area, there are a couple of options lined up for the winter season but for now am getting my pocket money through tips working in a couple of local bars and restaurants.

I don’t often campaign for wildlife specifically (with an exception of the marine life campaigns through Surfers Against Sewage) though like many, I am always disturbed to see polar bears starved to death through lack of ice to hunt on, or dolphins, whales and sharks killed for their fins, teeth, meat or oil. The reason I don’t tend to shout about that stuff is because I honestly just don’t know where to start, and there are so many campaigns to support. However this time I am directly affected by what is happening here in the jungle on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, Central America, so I feel the need to share with you all what is going down.

‘Monkeying around’ you say… I have been volunteering at the Nosara Wildlife Rescue Centre a few times a week. It is a twenty five minute run up some higgledy piggledy steep steps into the jungle and along a dirt track to the top of the hill. By the time I get there I am drenched in sweat as it is 30˚c outside. It’s a fun way to wake up at six in the morning – that’s for sure. Straight into work; I chop lettuce, mangos and cook sweet potatoes, wash out the kennels and put the laundry out to dry. Sometimes if I am lucky I get to hang out with the baby monkeys (the size of an orange) in the sun so they can get some fresh air. They climb up your arm or leg to sit on your head or the back of your neck which makes me laugh. The Nosara Wildlife Rescue Centre has taken in over 80 monkeys this season – when I say ‘wildlife’, it is pretty much just the monkeys that they care for. The monkeys are found crying on the road side or in the jungle because they have been electrocuted. You see what is happening in Nosara is new properties are being built, the area is becoming a popular tourist town, the jungle trees are being torn down, and replaced with power cables laced in and out of the mango trees. Mr/Mrs Monkey swings along with family in tow to get some fresh mangos for breakfast and bzzzz zap fiissss. They get electrocuted. Some die straight away and others loose limbs, tails and family. Their first stop is the Nosara Wildlife Rescue Centre where they are rehabilitated before going on to SEBU the half way house, and then are hopefully released back into the wild.

The Nosara Wildlife Rescue Centre are in need of old towels, unwanted bed sheets and antibacterial cream, so if you are visiting Nosara then save space for a towel or two in your suitcase. And of course, they are looking always in need of new equipment so donations on their website are always appreciated, to donate just click here http://nosarawildlife.com/donate-now/

To find out more visit their website http://nosarawildlife.com/ or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Nosara.Wildlife

Monkey photos by the talented Laura Florence http://lauraflorence.com

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Getting to know Catherine Bruhwiler

Catherine is a professional surfer, mother of two and co-owner of a family business: Bruhwiler Surf School in Tofino, BC and owns her own stand up paddle board school called SUP Tofino, yep she’s a busy lady.

Catherine grew up in Tofino and began surfing as a child on a piece of plywood, and at that time was one of the very few female surfers in the waves. Since then, she has championed the female Canadian surf world and travelled the world to compete and play.

We sat down with her on the west coast of Canada and asked her the IPOS questionairre…

Full name? Catherine Bruhwiler

Occupation? Full time Surf and SUP instructor

Where are you right now? At home, just got out of the shower after a surf. My daughter is playing the fiddle for me and my son is packing for a camping surf trip tonight.

What woke you up this morning? My alarm clock at 7 am. Good thing you didn’t ask me yesterday, I got up at 4:15 for a sunrise tour.

What’s stoking your fire today? Remote surf camp with outward bound kids tomorrow and camping with my kids

What scares you? My kids in danger, that’s it

What sound do you love? Waves and silence too

What sound do you hate? Arguing people,especially my own kids

Who or what is outstanding in your eyes? Humble generous and talented humans

If heaven exists, what would you like God to say to you as you arrive at the pearly gates? You can get lots of sleep here 🙂