Great Lakes Great Stories: Bicycle Trip Around Lake Superior

Great Lakes Great Stories: Bicycle Trip Around Lake Superior

From Great Lakes Great Stories

Our mission is to carry out a minimal-impact bicycle trip around Lake Superior to record and share the stories of its people, the places they love, and the threat that climate change poses.

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Recent Updates

Update #12

12 months ago

We forgot to mention...WE MADE IT!

We circumnavigated Lake Superior under our own power. We recorded stories from every corner of the Lake from a variety of people. We uncovered an oral history of Lake Superior that is unique and influential. And we couldn't have done it without the support we received from wonderful people like you!

Over the coming weeks and months we will be releasing the audio of the stories we recorded on our website and through Story Corps. We will also be sorting through lots of footage for our film that we will be showing at the Fresh Coast Film Festival this fall.

Stay tuned and thanks again for your support!

More Info

The Idea:

Our vision is to research and collect the stories about the influence of Lake Superior on those who live on its shores. Throughout the 1,400 mile journey, we will make a conscious effort to utilize sustainable practices with our food, equipment, and energy use. We want to gain an understanding of the impact that Lake Superior has on its surrounding communities while creating a platform of education about ways to keep Lake Superior pristine. As climate change is the defining issue in our generation, we want to be proactive in mitigating its effects on the places that we love. We aim to document this experience by utilizing a website, social media platforms, film, photos, and audio recordings.

The Funding:

We plan to use the donations to purchase gear, food, lodging, and other necessities for our tour. We will spend money only on what we absolutely need. Upon completion of our circumnavigation, we plan to use a portion of the remaining funds to support two or three grassroots organizations that we encounter along our journey. The remaining amount of money will be used to further our mission and vision by supporting future Great Lakes Great Stories trips and/or events.

The Route:

  • May 8: Marquette, MI - Grand Marais, MI: 92 miles
  • May 9: Grand Marais, MI - Paradise, MI: 68.1 miles
  • May 10: Paradise, MI - Sault St. Marie, ON: 60.8 miles
  • May 11: Sault St. Marie, ON - Montreal River Harbor, ON: 77.0 miles
  • May 12: Montreal River Harbor, ON - Wawa, ON: 67.7 miles
  • May 13: Wawa, ON - Mobert, ON: 78.7 miles
  • May 14: Mobert, ON - Terrace Bay, ON: 89.6 miles
  • May 15: Terrace Bay, ON - Red Rock, ON: 76.6 miles
  • May 16: Red Rock, ON - Thunder Bay, ON: 68.4 miles
  • May 17: Thunder Bay, ON - Lutsen, MN: 99 miles
  • May 18: Lutsen, MN - Duluth, MN: 95.1 miles
  • May 19: Duluth, MN - Cornucopia, WI: 67.8 miles
  • May 20:  Cornucopia, WI - Ironwood, MI: 84 miles
  • May 21: Ironwood, MI - Ontonagon, MI: 67 miles
  • May 22: Ontonagon, MI - Copper Harbor, MI: 101 miles
  • May 23: Copper Harbor, MI - L’anse, MI: 81.8 miles
  • May 24: L’anse, MI - Marquette, MI: 67.6 miles

The Stories:

We will be recording stories on every day of our 17 day trip. We want to hear the small stories and the big stories--we find value in all stories. We find it important to share the human experience in a variety of contexts.

Although many of stories will come as meet people, we do have five storytelling events planned for the trip. Here's a list of them:

  • Sault Ste. Marie, ON: May 10th from 4-6 p.m. at Velorution Bike Shop (162 Old Garden River Road, Sault Ste. Marie, ON, P6B 5A6, Canada)
  • Wawa, ON: May 12th from 4-6 p.m. at Naturally Superior Adventures (10 Government Dock Rd, Wawa, ON, P0S 1K0, Canada)
  • Thunder Bay, ON: May 16th from 6-8 p.m. at Community Spokes (955 Oliver Road (Bike Shack) Thunder Bay, ON)
  • Duluth, MN: TBA
  • Marquette, MI: May 24th from 7-9 p.m. at the Ore Dock Brewing Company (114 W Spring St, Marquette, MI, 49855)

The Details:

Riders: Dylan Gonda (D’dawg), Olivia Walcott (Oaklivia), and Ryan Watling (Rye n’ Bikes)

Dates of the Ride: May 8-24, 2017

Website: www.greatlakesgreatstories.org

The Supporters:

Northern Michigan University: logo development, marketing, audio and visual equipment and other gear

Velodrome Coffee Company: COFFEE, packable brew setups, marketing and humor

Down Wind Sports: bike maintenance repair materials and tools

StoryCorps: advice, inspiration and story collecting tools

Our Shores Ultrarun: advice, logistical planning and motivation

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
12 months ago

Update #12

We forgot to mention...WE MADE IT!

We circumnavigated Lake Superior under our own power. We recorded stories from every corner of the Lake from a variety of people. We uncovered an oral history of Lake Superior that is unique and influential. And we couldn't have done it without the support we received from wonderful people like you!

Over the coming weeks and months we will be releasing the audio of the stories we recorded on our website and through Story Corps. We will also be sorting through lots of footage for our film that we will be showing at the Fresh Coast Film Festival this fall.

Stay tuned and thanks again for your support!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #11

Last week was wildly exciting. This week will be even crazier. Next week we'll be hitting the road to launch Great Lakes Great Stories!

Here's the latest with GLGS:
-As of this morning, we were officially presented our NMU Adventure Team certificates at a meeting the NMU President and Campus Executive Leadership Team!
-Fresh Coast Film Festival presented us with a scholarship to support our bike trip and produce a film for the festival in Marquette this fall.
-Most of our main story recording locations and times have been established. Check our website and Facebook for more information on those!
-Nearly all of our lodging situations are solidified (although we still have a couple places to lock in).
-We were highlighted as the feature story in the Northwind, NMU's campus newspaper.
-Our custom bike jerseys came in (we're going to look so great that we're considering changing our name to Great Lakes Great Looks... oh, maybe not)!
-All of the GLGS team attended the Marquette Climate March and recorded our first stories. We tested our equipment, practiced our story recording conversations, and supported Olivia (and her rad roommate Georgia) in orchestrating the March.
-And last but not least, EXAMS! This week is finals week for us at NMU so aside from bike trip planning, packing, and moving out of our current "homes", we'll be spending many hours preparing for our final marks on this academic semester.

As always, thank you so much for your support and enthusiasm for Great Lakes Great Stories! We hope you're just as excited as we are for this journey to officially begin!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #10

We've been featured in NMU's campus newspaper, the North Wind! Check it out here: http://www.thenorthwindonline.com/cyclists-to-circumnavigate-lake-superior/

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #9

It's crunch time, folks.

Two weeks from today, we will be on the first leg of our trip! We still have a few loose ends to tie up but otherwise we are more than excited for our adventure to begin!

Here's some awesome updates:
-We've raised our fundraising goal again! We can now eat full meals and share our love for Lake Superior to even more audiences!
-We've established most of our lodging accommodations (but could always use more so let us know if you have connections).
-Most of our gear is set and ready to be packed!
-We hosted a bicycle maintenance workshop at the Marquette Climbers' Cooperative this weekend (and it went VERY well!).
-We have some big plans in the works regarding Fresh Coast Film Festival (stay tuned)...
-We will have a booth at the Marquette Climate March this Saturday (9:45 a.m.-2:30 p.m. at the Downtown Marquette Commons) and we'd love to chat all things Lake Superior!
-And last but not least... STICKERS! We will be mailing out stickers to all of our fundraiser supporters this week (that's you!). WE APPRECIATE YOUR SUPPORT!

Don't forget to continue sharing our mission and creating stories with our Great Lakes! Happy Spring, folks!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #8

UPDATE: We spent the weekend riding out to Grand Marais, MI. We enjoyed the splendid weather (even though there was still snow along the road for many parts) and used this test ride to fine tune our equipment and packing choices. We were so eager that we almost kept going until we realized that we still have classes to finish!

If you haven't noticed already...we are only 27 DAYS AWAY from starting our journey around Lake Superior! If you are willing help us by donating to our fundraiser page, providing food or lodging, holding a conversation with us, or some other form of support, we would gladly welcome it.

Thank you so much for your incredible support already. Stay tuned for more updates coming soon!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #7

The enthusiastic support that we have received throughout the development of Great Lakes Great Stories has been so humbling and motivating! As a result, we've been able to raise more funds and better our vision. Please help us continue this progression and donate to our journey.

P.S. Enjoy the BEAUTIFUL weather this weekend! We will be enjoying it too... more details coming. Stay tuned for insight to our preparations!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #6

Guess what happened last night... WE REACHED OUR FUNDRAISING GOAL!

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! THUMBS UP FOR THAT!

Even thought we reached our goal, that doesn't mean we'll stop fundraising. In fact, reaching our goal only allows us to solidify our financial sustainability and reach out to wider audiences. We can still use all of the help we can get and each person that supports us is integral to what we are doing.

Don't forget to share our mission and vision so that we can share the stories of our magnificent Great Lakes!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #5

Happy Saturday, folks!

We are SO DANG CLOSE to our fundraising goal! Any little bit will help us get that much closer to our goal. Please consider donating to our cause and sharing our project with everyone you know. We truly appreciate all of your help! Only 43 days until we start our wild journey!

Stay tuned for some exciting updates in the coming week or two!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #4

We are getting so close to our fundraising goal! We need your help to get there! If you haven't done so already, please donate, share and become involved in our mission. This trip is so much bigger than any of us and your support is vital.

As a reminder, we plan to use our funding primarily for support during the trip (i.e. food, gear, lodging, emergencies, etc.). The remaining funds will be used to establish financial sustainability with future GLGS trips and to make a donation to a grassroots organization that we feel supports our values.

It's not just about us but rather about every person and place that make the Great Lakes powerful.

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #3

Happy Monday, folks! We are making great progress towards our fundraising goal but we aren't there yet. If you haven't had a chance to donate yet, please consider supporting this wild and meaningful adventure! Trust me, you'll be glad to be involved in such a great experience.

If you haven't shared our plans with every person you know, then please do. Conversation and sharing are vital to our vision.

As always, any support from you all is wonderful. Big smiles and open minds on this great Monday!

In the meantime, checkout the latest happenings from this week:
http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2017/02/students_planning_1400-mile_bi.html
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PL2tBtxBgeM

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
about 1 year ago

Update #2

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

Over the weekend we hit the 50% mark! Your support, whether it be monetary or motivational (or both!), makes us more and more stoked every day!

We obviously couldn't do this without you all and we are more than grateful for your support. Please keep sharing our mission with your friends, family, neighbors, coworkers... everyone! Happy days, folks!

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Great Lakes Great Stories posted a new update:
over 1 year ago

Update #1

HOORAY! We've hit 25% of our goal! Thank you so much to all of you who have donated already. We truly appreciate it!

For those who haven't donated yet, if you are able to do so, we can definitely use the support. However if you are not able to financially support us, we ask that you share our mission and ideas with those around you. Any form of support and motivation is mighty powerful.

Happy Wednesday, folks! Only 82 days until we hit the road!

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