Title photo taken by J.C. as I was nearing the end of my run up Anarchy Mountain and our entrance into the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia (Michael in foreground).
This isn’t in any chronological order, but I wanted to start at our ending in Osoyoos.
After a rest day in Cranbrook, BC we have been running the hills and passes of Highway 3 to those big, scenic, fall landscapes of the Kootenay’s. After a few hundred kilometers of running, we have come upon some rest days in Osoyoos, yes rest days. The weather has been prime for running and the energy level still feels high; however, for J.C. and Michael, 7 months on the road and only 400 km until the end of this gargantuan run can cause one’s energy to be wicked away at times, but these are the moments when you have to draw on your inner strength to move forward.
An exciting life milestone was reached by J.C. on October 4th, 2017: he has run 3850 km, which is the kilometer halfway mark of Canada. This is a big achievement not only for J.C., but also Michael and everyone that has run with, helped, or given a donation to J.C.’s Cours Pour Ta Vie project.
When I look back at the chance meeting I had with Michael one rainy afternoon outside of North Bay, Ontario, and the privilege of being a small part of this amazing feat by two guy’s from Quebec, and the absolute determination — grit, and the power of comradery by one man to help another achieve his cross-Canada running dream against all odds. My involvement in this story as it unfolds is a life changing experience and thought provoking. Without a doubt, their story has been a highlight of my walking odyssey across Canada and towards Anchorage, AK, and even if this is the only and last great story I have to tell during my walk, it is enough.
It was an absolute pleasure to run the last 6 km with J.C. to the 3850 km mark, but we are still not finished running! This is just a milestone, but one of importance. After a number of discussions with both J.C. and Michael, and having the pleasure of being allowed into some personal parts of this project, I truly think all the stories from the Cours Pour Ta Vie project demonstrates the power of team work, community, and grit needed in achieving a goal and dream.
Above. J.C. and Michael just after the halfway mark was reached.
Honestly, I never started, or expected this walk to be about discovering the many psychological and social aspects required for someone to achieve a cross-country, life changing goal, but I am beginning to uncover and live them.
Above. The scenery while running along the side of the road.
Above. After having our tires checked and changed in Cranbrook that day, J.C. is inspecting a tire with obvious low pressure.
Above. My ‘room’ in the R.V.
Above. As I look out of bedroom window while waiting for my turn to run.
Above. Me making toast in the morning at a gas station in Christina Lake, B.C.
Above. The morning scenery while running.
Above. Driving to the end of another 10 km section along Highway 3. One person runs, while the others drive ahead in-wait.
Above. To me, the scenery became even more beautiful.
Above. During one of my running sections outside of Greenway, I saw this table with corn for sale, but no one was around to keep an eye on the money!
Above. We camped at B.C.’s small City: Greenway.
Above. The beginning of Greenway, B.C.
Above. The Sasquatch sculpture before entering Osoyoos.
Above. Deep thoughts during a break before the kilometer halfway mark of Canada was reached.
Above. Osoyoos Lake.
Above. I fished this whole flat of strawberries out of the dumpster after watching a Sysco delivery truck driver from the R.V. window place this flat in it (8 lbs). He dropped only 2 or 3 of these containers in the parking lot during a delivery to a restaurant, but ended up throwing out the whole flat! As expected, all of the strawberries were fine.
Above. Garbage bin strawberry fruit salad!
A visit to one of the estate wineries in Osoyoos during the day, where we tasted many wines and were treated by one of the staff at Adega On 45th Estate Winery to some wine, grapes, cheese, and crackers free of charge! J.C. was the only wine expert among us! Michael doesn’t drink, but hung around to watch us and join in on the experience.
Above. Me inspecting the grapes. The volcanic parent material of this soil helps to define the unique flavor spectrum of these grapes.
Above. The winery
Above. J.C. doing this odd thing with his mouth while tasting the wine.
Above. Another photo of me inspecting the oak barrels, which cost a few thousand euro’s each.
Above. Snacks after the wine.
Above. Being cool and eating. My hunger is without bounds!
Above. J.C. and I visited the Osoyoos Desert Centre for a few hours.
Above. The Desert Centre.
Above. Antelope Brush shrub (Purshia Tridentata), a defining species of one of the four most endangered ecosystems in Canada — the Antelope-Brush Ecosystem of the Okanagan Valley.
Above. Me poking around in the soil and that thin biotic layer at the top of this desert soil that sustains life here! I’m sorry, but if you don’t know soil, you don’t know jack about how ecosystems function!