Edit: I have to catch my flight to Victoria, I'll try and answer any questions when I get the chance. You can always check out my subreddit /r/SkylerTravels

In August 2016 I began walking from near Toronto, Canada where I live. It took me 322 days to get from there to San Francisco. Along the way I visited 18 states and wore out 8 pairs of shoes. More importantly I met so many incredible people who showed me great kindness and hospitality. With what we hear about this world you'd think I would have had trouble with people at every turn, but just about everyone I met was awesome!

That last trip was all about me, this trip is about me and my best friend raising money for Alzheimer research! Our plan is to cycle 8,000km over the course of roughly 100 days. To be completely honest, we have very little cycling experience, but we're going to give it our best go.

If you'd like to donate to the Alzheimer Society of Canada Click Here. If you live in another country, please consider donating to whatever Alzheimer Society you have link to US

My Proof: /r/SkylerTravels, there's hundreds of blog entries from there that should hopefully count.

Instagram

Youtube

I leave on my flight to Victoria tonight so I'll do my best to answer all the questions.

Edit: I forgot to post a map! Here's my route for my cross Canada cycling

Here's America there were some slight variations on the walk in some areas, those are most of the major cities I hit.

Comments: 970 • Responses: 122  • Date: 

good_morning_magpie310 karma

I'm curious about what kind of shoes you used. Regular sneakers or something built for this kind of long haul? How much did you rely on the kindness of strangers? What was the scariest moment?

CanuckBacon798 karma

I used running shoes since I was mainly walking on sidewalks/roads. My first pair was Asics, 2nd Brooks, 3rd was New Balance, 4th Nikes, 5th Brooks, and finished off with another two pairs of Asics.

In my personal order of quality I'd put it at:

Asics, Brooks, New Balance, Nike. I used some of the lower/middle end shoes, so higher end for each brand may be different.

I relied on the kindness of strangers every day. I would sometimes have random people pull over, hand me a cold bottle of water or food, and drive off. This happened many times on my trip, for some of them I never even got a chance to tell them who I am or what I was doing, they just wanted to be kind to a stranger, not look for recognition. Many times I'd camp in strangers yards, or be invited inside to eat with them. I even slept inside the Mayor's houses on two separate occasions.

Scariest moment was when I was in Alabama. I had just crossed the Tennessee river and was on some land owned by the National Parks system, it wasn't really meant for camping though. It was about 10pm, the sun had long set and I really needed to use the bathroom, and I'm talking more than just a tree. Luckily there was a bathroom about 10 minutes walk up this little hill. So I start walking. The moon was out so I had enough light I didn't need to bother with a flashlight. That is until I start hearing rustling nearby. Suddenly it was coming from multiple directions. Almost a scratching noise. I quickly got out my phone and turned on my flashlight only to discover it was some armadillos. They were just digging in the dirt for bugs or whatever it is. Nearly scared the shit out of me.

As a brown guy usually when I tell that story most people don't expect my scariest story that takes place in rural Alabama to be armadillo based.

NULLizm96 karma

Back in high school i was friends with a group of guys that formed a youth group. It was comprised of about 20 guys from my grade and the grade below. The guys in the lower grade wanted to go have a camping trip with the leaders out at the nearest lake.

So it's roughly 10pm that friday and we are sitting around trying to come up with something to do. Someone mentions pranking the lower grade anf we are all in. Within an hour we are out there at the lake decked in black head to toe with various things like bats and an actual chainless chainsaw. One of my friends even has a ghillie suit.

We park and grab our gear and start walking the mile or so to their campsite. (We know where they are since we all used this campsite). We think "we better not have any lights on or they will see us". Off the lights go and we start walking, slowly. It becomes apparent that this is easier said than done. The little rustlings here and there combined with the near complete darkness was enough to force us to walk with our arms linked. So there we are: 5 dudes walking arm in arm, one in a ghillie suit and one carryinh a chainsaw, in the dark of night. Suddenly one of us stops dead, halting the group.

There is a noise on up ahead, a lot of noise all of a sudden. Directly in front of us we can hear it: kksshhshs kksshshs. We start to basically whimper in a catonic state as the noise starts moving toward us.

Fuck this, i hear my friend say as he tries to scramble for the flashlight. The noises keep coming toward us, disregarding our now feeble attempts at scaring it off. My one friend fumbling with the light, one i can feel is backing up, and another and i -we played soccer growing up- are reassurring ourselves that whatever it is 'if it comes closer is getting kicked either in the head or groin'.

After what feels like eternity, standing in blackness while death-gripping my friend, we finally got the light out to see a huge beast a family of opossums not 1 meter away.

The collective sigh of relief was tangible. The best part of this story comes after this when we get to become the "monster in the woods" ourselves but this is your ama

CanuckBacon38 karma

A truly inspiring story, I'd love to hear how the rest went!

RavingRationality6 karma

As a brown guy

  1. And you walked through America. Brave man.

  2. Welcome to Canada, good job. Your route isn't taking you anywhere near the most heavily populated part of Canada, so I won't see you, but no point adding a few hundred kilometers to your trip...

  3. Thanks to Breaking Bad, I had a mental image that this "Skyler" was a blonde woman. Ooops!

CanuckBacon5 karma

I'm have lived in Brampton, ON for the last several years, so I've already seen the most populated part of Canada. Time to see the rest of it!

lawrnk2 karma

Plenty of brown guys in Alabama and the rest of the south.

CanuckBacon19 karma

Yeah, I learned not to generalize the south on my trip. I'm half Indian, was getting a lot of sun, and didn't shave my beard. So when I saw my aunt in Dallas one of the first things she said to me was that I looked Muslim.

SleezyCarSalesman167 karma

are you a fan of The Proclaimers?

CanuckBacon220 karma

Every single day, I'd start my day listening to that song.

HoyaB1984147 karma

I’ve always wanted to do this but I’m very poor. Where do you get the money for food and shelter? Is it hard finding safe places to pitch a tent?

CanuckBacon132 karma

I saved up ahead of time for this trip.

You might want to try checking out /r/vagabond

ChampionOfTheSunAhhh60 karma

Without getting too specific, how much around were your total expenses for the whole thing?

CanuckBacon106 karma

Around $5,000USD, for nearly a year.

ProxeusDave28 karma

So something like 27,500 CDN?

(cue sad, ex-Maritimer weeping)

Seriously man, excellent cause. I lost my grandma to Alzheimer's, it sucked for everyone. Just be careful of the grizzlies.

CanuckBacon41 karma

I actually transferred all my money at about $0.67 on the dollar. Which was about as low as it went. So I lost around 1/3 of my money which sucked.

Thanks buddy!

ProxeusDave41 karma

Remember those glorious days when CDN was worth 1.07 USD?

I know it was only for about a week, but I treasure the memory, like a personal Heritage Minute.

Take care, eh?

CanuckBacon35 karma

That happened when I was living in the States and came to Canada for a vacation... I just can't win...

I will!

Novadina12 karma

How could it be so little? What did you eat? Where did you sleep?

CanuckBacon41 karma

I slept outdoors mostly and in people's houses. I only had to pay for hotels twice on my trip.

Food, cellphone, and shoes were basically my only expenses.

jimmycarr111 karma

What was your sleeping setup for outdoors? I'd love to see a kit list.

Also did you do the whole thing alone or did people walk sections with you?

CanuckBacon37 karma

Tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, jetboil stove for cooking (Usually eating ramen or instant mashed potatoes). I also had a hammock that I slept in sometimes if the weather was good and didn't have to worry about bugs.

I walked alone mostly. My dad walked with me for about two days. Also a couple journalists walked with me for around an hour or two while they interviewed me.

FairyOfTheNight11 karma

Were you ever lonely? Or did you enjoy the entire back-to-nature feel?

CanuckBacon25 karma

I was never really lonely, since I've always been really comfortable being alone. I really love being in nature, just seeing all the trees rather than houses is really calming.

PoliticalLava17 karma

I love that word, vagabond. It feels like you're swearing, BUT YOURE NOT. :)

CanuckBacon10 karma

Yeah it definitely did have some negative connotations but the word has basically been reclaimed.

elitedmillz147 karma

How does it feel being the most hated character on breaking bad?

CanuckBacon102 karma

That's the real reason I'm doing this trip, to ease the hatred.

twitchPr0saic143 karma

My wife is away on work about 1,000 miles away, and I’ve been debating a question that I think you can help me with. If I were to walk 500 miles, could I then walk 500 more just to be the man who walked 1,000 miles then fall down at her door?

Edit: three things I wanted from this comment 1. A response from OP. 2. At least one upvote 3. A chain of ba da da das in response Today’s a good day.

CanuckBacon46 karma

Yes, yes you could.

Cyg500592 karma

Hi Skyler, I first wanted to say thank you very much for raising money for Alzheimer research. It means a lot to me. My father was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's at the age of 52 and my family has watched him slowly wither away over the last 12 years. It's been tough on us all. It's a horrible ailment that needs more attention.

What made you choose to donate to the Alzheimer Society of Canada?

CanuckBacon90 karma

Thank you for sharing your story.

My grandfather (who passed away in January this year) had Alzheimer. He was lucky enough to live to 99 years old, and it was only the last 5 or so years that it started. I lived with him and my grandma for several years as I finished High school. My last trip was for myself, this trip is for him.

spicytacoo56 karma

What? How did I not know this already?

Have fun. Don't die. Wear a helmet.

CanuckBacon46 karma

Thanks! I'll do my best.

I've talked about it at trivia a bit, but I guess it just didn't come up recently. I'm going to be using the tent your family gave me for my walk! So it's going to be one of the best travelled tents in existence by the time I'm done with it.

spicytacoo17 karma

Awesome.

AdammabA26 karma

What just happened here?

Giggletubelaughter8 karma

I personally would guess that /u/spicytacoo happened to donate a tent to OP and it’s also possible they know each other in real life since it’s phrased as if it’s a common experience they had. Or maybe not!

CanuckBacon13 karma

Yeah, we know each other IRL, we go to the same trivia group. Their family gave me a tent to use on my Walking trip, which worked out really well.

VAPLAO39 karma

Did you start walking early in the morning and end at night fall to find accommodations to eat and sleep? Was there a day you thought you wouldn’t make it to the next city or you planned accordingly?

CanuckBacon72 karma

I'd try to start early, and finish in the evening before sunset. I did my best to never walk in the dark, as two people (that I know of) in the last 5 years attempting to walk across America died that way.

Some days I couldn't make it town to town, so I would stealth camp. Basically camping somewhere out of the way when you know you're not really supposed to be there.

jimmycarr125 karma

How did those 2 people die? Stay safe out there friend <3

CanuckBacon46 karma

Both got hit by cars at night. One was walking for environmental awareness, the other because he lost his son to bullying.

jimmycarr126 karma

That's so very sad :(

CanuckBacon39 karma

It really is. I stayed with the best friend of one of them. I actually met him completely by accident in a small town in Oregon. I talked with him a lot about it, and hopefully it helped him.

VAPLAO20 karma

Yeah that what’s terrifying!

Great thanks, good luck on your upcoming challenge. I’m in Montreal so you still have a long way before reaching here, I’ll keep an eye on your progress !

Edit: typo

CanuckBacon27 karma

Yeah definitely! If you have a place for me and my friend to stay, or just want to meet up for some food, message me as I get closer!

SpearLifebee35 karma

Last year, what made you choose to walk across America? Do you have any regrets from that, what you wish you could've done?

Also for the future, should Canada go well, any plans to cycle maybe from the top of Canada to the bottom of America?

CanuckBacon79 karma

I walked across the US because I really wanted to travel. I just had a year of time off, had a bit of money, and my best friend bet me $20 I couldn't do it.

I think my only regret is not using a stroller from the start. Every year there's a couple people that walk across the US, and using a stroller has become standard. For the first 2,000 miles I decided to be special and use a backpack, that is until I hurt my hip. Now I've got a kind permanent problem in my hip that acts up occasionally. I did the next 2,500 miles using a stroller.

Well if Canada goes well, I think I'll have to move on to other countries! There's still so many left to explore! Besides, I'm more of an across kind of guy (no idea what that means it sounded cooler in my head).

jpemz19 karma

May i ask you how you broke your hip? Did it include an accident or was it sort of a repetitive strain injury?

CanuckBacon32 karma

I didn't actually break it, but I messed up a tendon or something on it. It made it impossible to walk for more than 50 feet with my backpack on. If I sleep on my side or extend my leg to much it'll sometimes still act up. Usually a couple days of rest and being careful and it's fine again. It still can't support weight though.

SoLetsReddit21 karma

And you’re planning to cycle across Canada with this issue? Eesh

CanuckBacon32 karma

Well I managed to walk the other 2,500 miles across America with it. Hopefully this isn't too bad. I suppose we'll see.

akeldama19842 karma

Labral tear?

CanuckBacon4 karma

No idea to be honest. I saw my family doctor once about it, they basically just said sleep on my back or with a pillow between my legs. Not terribly informative, but I follow the advice and am usually fine.

amapinto10 karma

Hey! Fellow Canuck here from Guelph! (I would normally say Toronto, but you could call my bluff on that!)

Just wanted to wish you good luck and let you know cycling is a lot easier on your joints than walking / running. Also, I've only every done 90km on a bike with some training before, but it took about a day (mid-morning to early evening). At some point, you will get this feeling like you can go forever and it's amazing!

Thank you for your fund raising! I'll be rooting for you!

CanuckBacon15 karma

I'm from Brampton :P

Thanks for your words of encouragement!

Str4yfromthep4th33 karma

Serious question. How does walking across the country help with raising money for research? I hear about ppl doing this kind of thing all the time but ive never understood how it is an effective tool to raise money.

CanuckBacon31 karma

I do this, bring some publicity to the cause of Alzheimer disease, and encourage people to donate. Some people are inspired by me doing stuff like cycling across Canada in 100 days and feel that since I'm passionate enough to do that, they are willing to donate whatever amount of money they are able to.

ZoeZebra24 karma

In all seriousness, do you think it is effective?

I'm interested in effective alturism. The idea that you could do a lot more good if you got a regular job or started a company and donated your income instead.

Mind you, nothing stopping you do that after your travels!

CanuckBacon47 karma

I'm honestly not entirely sure. I'm only 21 and have only worked minimum wage jobs. I spend a lot more money while staying in one place working than I do while walking/cycling. If I can raise more money than what I save up it'll have been worth it. Especially since I get the added benefit of seeing and meeting many incredible people. A good portion of this trip is me having fun/travelling.

njmonkeyboy28 karma

Did you have anyone stop thinking you're a hitch hiker? What Restaurant or chain did you rely on most?

CanuckBacon52 karma

Oh yeah, lots of people stopped. I would usually just let them know what I was doing and thank them anyway. You never know the next person walking that path may be a hitchhiker and I don't want to dissuade anyone from helping them.

In order, McDonald's, Wendy's, and Burger King. I'd go to other fast food chains as well, but those were my top 3. I'm a man who likes Coca-Cola so I mostly stick to places that serve it. A couple regional/uncommon places I liked going to, Chick-fil-a, In-N-Out, and Whataburger.

jimmycarr115 karma

I hitched across America :) it's a great way to travel. Thank you for thinking of us!

CanuckBacon20 karma

I hitchhiked back in about 11 days, definitely also a fun way to travel, shoutout to /r/hitchhiking

newblevelz24 karma

How do you get enough calories "on the run" to keep up with the constant walking? Did you lose a lot of weight over the course of your trip?

CanuckBacon47 karma

I'd try and just eat as much as I could, even on days I wasn't walking. I would sometimes just go to McDonald's eat 6 (1800 calories) cheeseburgers for lunch and then keep walking, only to eat more fastfood later.

I lost quite a bit of fat, and regained most of that weight back in calf muscles. I think I was down about 5 pounds from when I stated.

hellomymellowfellow13 karma

Ah, so that's the secret to building calf muscles..

CanuckBacon44 karma

Yes, don't forget the walking part though. Can't expect to just eat cheeseburgers and get strong calves.

EvElizabeth16 karma

How cool is this!!

I don’t want to generalize or stereotype too much, but do you think an experience like this would be different if you were a woman? Are there women you know of that have done something similar? I personally would be concerned walking all that way by myself as a female. I understand assault and violence can happen to anyone though. Curious to hear yours (and anyone else’s) thoughts on this!

CanuckBacon16 karma

I think it would be more dangerous if I was a woman, but I think it'd still be possible. There's a woman who did it for adult sexual purity actually.

Cryptic-Panther14 karma

I see a lot of these cross Canada trips and they always skip PEI, So are you going to every Province?

CanuckBacon21 karma

Yes, I'm even going to PEI. If only for a day or two or riding. I plan on hitting all 10 (sorry Territories)!

bullintheheather13 karma

Do you ever forget why you're doing this?

CanuckBacon39 karma

Not really, sometimes I do question how I get to these places in my life. I'm originally from a poor city in California (Vallejo if anyone knows it), I had severe asthma, parents kicked me out at 16, I graduated high school at 19. I was never exactly a "cool" guy. Yet I've had the opportunities to do really incredible things, and I am very, very grateful. I still sometimes wonder how I got to some of the unusual laces I've been to. For example, I camped in a barn in rural Idaho, I doubt many people, especially from my background have done that. Or spending time on the Navajo reservation, or a bunch of other things.

thadeusaquadicus15 karma

People who put themselves on these uncomfortable adventures are the coolest and kindest people I know! People who can live so minimally seems like they really know what’s important in life. Making every moment an adventure and taking on new perspectives. You’re fucking awesome man!

CanuckBacon12 karma

Thank you! It means a lot!

bullintheheather2 karma

I was just making a joke in poor taste, but thanks for the response. Also heyo from Oakville.

CanuckBacon3 karma

Hey! I'm from Brampton!

christabellouise11 karma

I’d love to do this, I drove across America ten years ago, and being from the uk, was startled at how hard it was to just ‘walk’ somewhere as there were no footpaths only major roads. Is it legal to walk along the highway or do you use trails?

CanuckBacon12 karma

Some highways you can walk on, Interstates you generally can't. So I was mostly on state roads, old highways, and just regular streets.

DrManly10 karma

Will you be coming through Nanaimo , BC?

CanuckBacon7 karma

Yes I will! I should probably be there on Sunday or Monday. I'm still looking for a place to stay/camp in Nanaimo. If you live there and know any, let me know!

DrManly11 karma

You would be more than welcome to come stay with my family if you dont find anything else. (we just have a couch to sleep on unless you wanna share a bed with my gma) there's also a hostel in town called the "painted turtle". There's other places I can recommend but I'm not going to list them all here. Just be in touch if you need any more information!

CanuckBacon10 karma

I mean a couch/floor or even camping in a backyard if you have one is fine with me and my friend. We're pretty easy going.

dcmcderm9 karma

Will you somehow update where you are regularly during your trip? I live along your route in a rural BC town so it would be cool to give you a high five on your way.

Also, I wish you luck climbing the Coquihalla and Rogers Pass, those will not be fun days...

CanuckBacon5 karma

Yeah, I bought a decent data plan and hopefully will be making blogposts on my subreddit /r/SkylerTravels daily.

DrNO8119 karma

Who is that poor American you walked 4,500 miles across?! Are they still alive?

j/k

Seriously though - would love to know the logistics of how a person would do this. Do you have family? How did you condition for this and avoid repetitive stress injuries? How did you afford to do this (most folks can't focus on walking for 322 days)?

CanuckBacon11 karma

I do have family, no children/SO though. I'm lucky enough to be fairly healthy aside from asthma and a hip injury I got on the trip.

I'm only 21 so no responsibilities or debt. I just saved up money working in highschool and decided to go for a 'little' walk.

grrtvnlw8 karma

Did you have any bills for student loans/insurance/credit cards to keep up with and if so did you just use your savings to pay your bills using your phone?

CanuckBacon19 karma

I have no debt or responsibilities. I'm only 21 with a high school education. Literally my only regular expenses for the next few months will be my cellphone bill and food. It's a lot cheaper to live this way.

agiantyellowlump5 karma

How was camping across America with all the private land and urban sprawl? Stealth camping is stressful and moreso when the routes based on roads. How did you tackle your trek and did you follow a trail, like the trans America route, or did you make your own.

How were the people you met.

How was getting water and logistics covered.

CanuckBacon8 karma

Stealth camping can be pretty difficult. A lot of times I trip to find churches or something because they didn't usually mind. Other times I'd knock on people's doors and ask, sometimes people were open to it.

People were very, very kind. I seriously have amazing luck since I basically ran into only kind people.

When I was going through places with little water I'd stock up. A few times I was getting closer to running out and people would give me some which was really awesome.

agiantyellowlump3 karma

What kind of gear did you bring? I'm really about backpacking but I find when I switch from a trail oriented area to an urban sprawl. Backpacking just becomes being homeless. People view you differently and the logistics of water, sleep and security become a total different thing.

CanuckBacon3 karma

Yeah it's a hard switch. In the cities I'd usually try to CouchSurf which was a lot nice. It also gave me a place to leave my stuff so I could explore the city for a bit on my own.

passcork5 karma

Why did you decide to walk from Toronto to SF specifically? Did you also concider some of the long-distance hiking trails like the Apalachian trail, Continental devide trail or pasific crest trail?

CanuckBacon6 karma

My mom is Canadian from near Toronto, my dad is American from near SF. Both places are my homes, and so I felt it fitting to go from one to the other.

I thought about doing some of the big trails, but I decided I wanted to spend more time exploring cities and talking with people.

Fivestar_fox5 karma

Did you pre-plan your route or just wing it?

CanuckBacon6 karma

I just used google maps to find the major cities and just sorta listen to it. Some places I departed from what was originally planned and none of it was ever very strict. I took it day by day and just went in the general directions I had planned.

RideFarmSwing4 karma

What kind of bike are you riding? Vancouver island Cyclist here who could offer some tips on your route for the island.

CanuckBacon4 karma

It's a Kona. I'd love any advice you can give me. I'm just going Victoria to Nanaimo, but any tips are more than welcome.

RideFarmSwing8 karma

You are doing the most direct route, which if you are pressed for time will be the best, but it also includes riding a highway up a 400m accent with narrow shoulders and many blind spots. The Malahat is a beautiful sight to see, but might be a stressful start to your journey.

I road from tip to tip a couple years back. Took the Schwartz bay ferry to Saltspring island, over the island, and over to Crofton. It cuts out the big hill (mountain) and gives you a chance to see Saltspring which is a pretty neat place. Route 1 suggestions below.

https://www.google.ca/maps/dir/Victoria,+BC/Salt+Spring+Island,+BC/Crofton,+BC/Nanaimo,+BC/@49.1397201,-123.9473471,13z/data=!4m36!4m35!1m5!1m1!1s0x548f738bddb06171:0x38e8f3741ebb48ed!2m2!1d-123.3656444!2d48.4284207!1m5!1m1!1s0x548f5a19626d9787:0xf132d8e48ca8c55b!2m2!1d-123.5088755!2d48.8166622!1m15!1m1!1s0x548f5195bcfdab8d:0x67877816cd1cec1e!2m2!1d-123.6457976!2d48.863844!3m4!1m2!1d-123.8523793!2d49.0775444!3s0x5488af4320c4da4d:0x2eba6155a9b3f1bc!3m4!1m2!1d-123.9207492!2d49.1381629!3s0x5488a41786044afb:0x1be58edbb3f75d29!1m5!1m1!1s0x5488a15e20ac1c5b:0x50135152a7b0fd0!2m2!1d-123.9400648!2d49.1658836!3e1

Other route to take advantage of the islands incredible off road bike network would be to use a bunch of the trails! Galloping Goose, to Sooke Wilderness, to Cowichan bay trail...Then back to highway. I've done the cowichan bay trail in the summer and it was a bit wet then, not sure on current conditions, but it is a gosh darn magical trail along some fun road bike able terrain.

Route 2:https://www.google.ca/maps/dir/Victoria,+BC/Nanaimo,+BC/@49.1505451,-123.9916729,13.46z/data=!4m59!4m58!1m50!1m1!1s0x548f738bddb06171:0x38e8f3741ebb48ed!2m2!1d-123.3656444!2d48.4284207!3m4!1m2!1d-123.534741!2d48.4306654!3s0x548f0db189ae5a17:0xc88ad9f20240e08e!3m4!1m2!1d-123.536701!2d48.4299659!3s0x548f0db17fbe124f:0x27b5fc2bdb3f37d9!3m4!1m2!1d-123.5571691!2d48.4241672!3s0x548f0dcef15c930b:0x17e4672fd07bd665!3m4!1m2!1d-123.5731456!2d48.5132269!3s0x548f133e90a0c497:0xe02c73a5dd72f736!3m4!1m2!1d-123.5773463!2d48.5291377!3s0x548f134ecdec4bab:0x299a9fbbf0cabb6a!3m4!1m2!1d-123.5597183!2d48.5345899!3s0x548f6cb4185c834f:0xd8a37cea7fc02f1c!3m4!1m2!1d-123.5604002!2d48.5290467!3s0x548f6cca958b74e1:0xf0d5671e271273a1!3m4!1m2!1d-123.7330968!2d48.7231827!3s0x548f46fd8c244daf:0x5fa242c49b85a665!3m4!1m2!1d-124.3370104!2d48.911907!3s0x5488cf087af15a7b:0xcc51dc4bbc93f681!1m5!1m1!1s0x5488a15e20ac1c5b:0x50135152a7b0fd0!2m2!1d-123.9400648!2d49.1658836!3e1

I would ask around about conditions for this route though.

Good luck! If I was in town I'd offer you a backyard for camping and a hot shower, but the island is pretty friendly, I'll bet you will find some good spots.

CanuckBacon3 karma

Thanks for the advice, I'll keep it all in mind.

Threeknucklesdeeper4 karma

Would you rather fight 100 duck sized horses or 1 horse sized duck?

CanuckBacon14 karma

I'd take the duck sized horses. I'd do my best to befriend them, hopefully earning their trust until I can use them as a sort of dogsled team, then go across Mexico on it.

this_import3 karma

Are you cycling through Winnipeg? If you are, I would be very careful with your bike because it has a very high chance of it getting stolen.

CanuckBacon2 karma

Yeah, I have already been warned of Winnipeg, I'll be careful.

This_Is_That_Is_This2 karma

Any projection on when you'll make it here? I subbed to your page, maybe I'll ride with ya through town.

CanuckBacon2 karma

Probably 1.5-2 months from now. I honestly don't really know to be honest, gotta see how long the Rockies take.

loverturf3 karma

What did you do while you were walking to keep yourself occupied? Did you listen to music or just take everything in?

CanuckBacon12 karma

I listened to around 40 audiobooks, a bunch of podcasts, some music, and a whole lot of taking everything in.

Dr_Golduck3 karma

Your name is SKYler. Why didn’t you fly?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Well, I'm flying to Victoria, hopefully that counts for something?

koohikoo3 karma

Do you have a route picked out? If so is it public?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Yeah, it should be at the bottom of the post.

ayyyits7773 karma

Who pays for this and how do you live when not walking or biking?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Me, and I don't know how I survive in one place, but somehow I manage. (I work and am usually a normal contributing member of society).

that_is_so_Raven3 karma

Did you make your way downtown walking fast? Were faces passed and were you home bound?

CanuckBacon5 karma

Yes, I was also staring blankly ahead, making my way through the crowd.

NickPlus023 karma

Do you like pizza?

CanuckBacon9 karma

Yes, I still have some good memories of going to a rural town in Ohio, finding a pizza place and eating a large all by myself. As I was eating this kid maybe 7 years old saw this big semi truck across the road and pulled his arm down simulating pulling the horn of a truck until the drive did it. It was pretty funny. There's no better pizza than after you've been in the middle of nowhere for a while and are really, really hungry.

pfcarrot3 karma

I have a controversial question: Why don’t you just stop so you have knees at old age?

CanuckBacon12 karma

What's the point of living to be old if I didn't enjoy my youth?

Also, this way I can wheelchair across France when I'm older (or something ridiculous like that lol)

alextrif252 karma

What route are you taking through western Canada? Are you just sticking to the trans Canada highway?

CanuckBacon6 karma

This is the route I'll mostly be sticking to Only difference is I plan to visit PEI and some exact roads might be different.

Skiingfun6 karma

Be careful in PEI. Be very careful. Something about that island - it's a trap. You might end up staying there forever.

CanuckBacon2 karma

I went through Albuquerque/New Mexico and they say the same thing. Definitely felt the pull there, hopefully PEI isn't so strong I cant finish my trip lol.

lokase3 karma

Skylar, please feel free to PM me when you get to Ottawa. We can stuff you full of great food and provide you a warm/cool place for the night.

Good luck in your journey!

CanuckBacon5 karma

That'd be awesome!

I've gotten a lot of messages though, would you be able to follow along and PM me as I get closer to Ottawa? I don't want to forget about your very kind offer!

jiojoT2 karma

What is your relation to Alzheimer’s?

CanuckBacon3 karma

My grandfather, who I lived with in high school, had it. He passed away in January. I was fairly close with him so it was really hard to watch him deteriorate. I want to help raise money for Alzheimer research in the hope that as few other people as possible have to deal with that.

jemc7502 karma

How did you get people to notice your efforts? How do you get money for your cause on something like this, flat donations, per mile donations etc? My son has cancer, we live in Kansas City and he needs treatment in Houston. The travel expenses have really hit us hard. We've managed to take care of it, but it really opened my eyes to a need. So I've been thinking of walking from KC to Houston to raise money for organizations that help with transport and living expenses in these situations. Any advice is appreciated. EDIT redundancy

CanuckBacon3 karma

I told people I was going to do it and then just started doing it. I'd recommend contacting your local newspaper/tv news ahead of time and let them know. Tell friends and family, have them spread the word, etc. Most people are just donating flat donations, but you can try per mile donations.

Good luck with this trip! I'm rooting for you and if you have any questions about the more physical side of it, definitely let me know!

ThE_MagicaL_GoaT2 karma

Hey man, super cool you’re doing this, and crazy to think that it only cost you like 5 grand.

What was your favorite stop on your trek across America?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Honestly there's way too many to count or put one as my favourite. There were a lot of vastly different experiences.

One of my favourites though was walking along the Natchez trace during the fall. All the leaves were changing colours and with very few cars driving by it was really peaceful.

non_legendary2 karma

I'm happy you decided to cycle across Canada and not the US!. What kind of bike will you be riding?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I have a Kona, it's a bit older and not specifically meant for touring. My friend has a Giant.

iMayBeABastard2 karma

Hi Skyler! Piss on me, please?

CanuckBacon2 karma

Uhh, no thanks.

TurnNburn2 karma

Wouldn't getting a 9-5 job be better for raising money for Alzeimers Research?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Depends on whether the amount of money I raise, outnumbers the money I could save up in that time period. I'm spending about $2000 of my own money, so if I raise more than that for the Alzheimer society, it'll have been worth it.

dancestomusic2 karma

I don't think this has been asked. I'm curious what your bike setup is for a journey like this. I've often wanted to trek across Canada by bike, but like you, don't have any touring experience. What kind of gear are you bringing with you?

I may have a couch or air mattress for you in Ottawa if you need a place to crash depending on when you're rolling through here! :)

CanuckBacon2 karma

I have two side panniers on my back rack, and a camelbak on my back. Tent, sleeping bag, and sleeping pad are strapped on to the back rack as well. Everything else like clothes and food will be in the panniers

djklmnop2 karma

When talking to people in big cities, do you get mistaken for a homeless person and get mistreated? I work in Downtown San Diego and homelessness is rampant here. Often times I'll see someone that doesn't look quite homeless and I'm not sure whether I should strike a conversation or not.

CanuckBacon7 karma

Yeah I had a lot of people in big cities think I was homeless. I actually was almost kicked out of a burger place in Salt Lake City because a worker thought I was homeless. I was actually there for an interview. I told her off a bit for that, since even if I was properly homeless it shouldn't have happened.

TheSurgeon832 karma

What bike set up will you use? Will you have a mechanic supporting or have you learned a level of maintenance to keep you going then use bike shops you pass?

CanuckBacon3 karma

It's a Kona, I have 2 panniers on the back. I have been learning a decent level of maintenance, I guess we'll find out how much I know!

helpiforgotmy2 karma

This is so cool! When will you be in Vancouver?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I should be there on Monday or Tuesday. Once I get to Victoria I'll spend a couple days just getting last minute gear together, then ride to Nanaimo where I catch the ferry.

oatseatinggoats2 karma

What time of year do you expect to be in Newfoundland?

What kind of bike do you plan on using? On your plan it looks like there is a 112km stretch from the junction near the Little Grand Lake park to Millertown NL that appears to be all dirt road. The paved roads in NL are horrible, I can only imagine how bad the dirt road is, if you are planning to ride a road bike, you wont have much of a bike left after that stretch.

And moose. You are literally in the middle of nowhere, just you and moose and mosquitoes. There is about 200km in between "towns" if you are lodging up, and it will be miserable to camp in those areas if you cannot do 200km a day.

CanuckBacon3 karma

Hopefully early August.

I'll keep that in mind as I get towards there. I'm still just focused on getting over the Rockies for now.

PM_ME_UR_VULVASAUR_2 karma

Skyler is such a cool name.

Did you have any 'dangerous' encounters with your US trek and what do you foresee being the biggest differences between the US and Canada trek?

Best of luck! Impressive journey(s) you've both completed and hopefully will complete!

CanuckBacon5 karma

Thanks, it was a gift from my parents!

I didn't really have any truly dangerous, though there was a scary one that I wrote about here. I think the biggest difference between the trips will be physically. I'm not much of a cyclist and neither is my friend, so we've just been learning as much as we could over the last few months and prepping. We have the motivation part down, so it's a shot in the dark whether our bodies are ready too.

Thank you!

Sdoeden872 karma

I'm hoping to one day make the journey across America. Are there established camping sites frequently enough, or did you have to rough it most of the time? How much equipment did you bring along?

CanuckBacon2 karma

Most of the time you have to rough it/stealth camp. A lot of times in rural areas if you just knock on people's doors, explain you just want to camp on their lawn for a night. a decent portion will say yes. Though you'll run into some areas that are very hesitant of strangers.

NewAndyy2 karma

What do you usually think about when you're walking?

CanuckBacon4 karma

Anything and everything. Sometimes it's about pine cones, or the books I listened to, a lot of time thinking about food, whether there's another hill on the otherside of that one, and most importantly, how beautiful it is that swans can be gay.

NotAnArdvark2 karma

Do you feel all that walking has had an overall positive impact on your health? No joint trouble?

Perhaps related, why did you choose to cycle Canada after walking the US?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I had some hip problems, but mostly I think it made me healthier. It was hard afterwards transitioning away from eating 3-4k calories a day to eating only 2k like a normal person.

In Canada we have winter. I don't much care for the cold to be honest.

RuledbyShmoopie2 karma

Kick-ass. Same sub?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Bossman012 karma

Thank you so much for doing this! I lost my Grandpa to Alzheimer’s and I fear one day I will have it. Quick question, I use an app called Charity Mile to raise money for Alzheimer’s when I walk. Is their anything else you recommend we do to support this effort?

I wish you success on your trip and please let us know if their is any way to support you!

CanuckBacon3 karma

I lost my grandpa to it as well. It's a terrible disease.

I've heard of Charity Mile, thank you for doing that! You can also consider doing walks/rides with your local Alzheimer society and getting involved that way. Just contact them, see if they need volunteers for anything.

AndyHaNE2 karma

That’s all great and all, but can you do it with one leg? #Terry

CanuckBacon3 karma

That man was way more inspiring than I could ever be.

scarmbledeggs2 karma

What were your favorite and least favorite cities/states? Which places surprised you the most?

CanuckBacon4 karma

I had a lot of cities I liked

Cleveland, I always heard people make fun of it, but surprisingly nice.

Cincinatti, gotta love that Skyline

Austin, pretty nice city, very liberal though.

Albuquerque, cool city, love the nearby mountains, also I learned to spell Albuquerque!

Salt Lake City, I just picture it as Mormons eternally praying, but it is a really friendly and fairly diverse city. Like Albuquerque it has some nice mountains nearby.

Seattle, lotta tech, it's beautiful on the water there. I got a free ride in the Ferris wheel which was cool. Never been in one before.

I didn't really have any least favourite places. Most places were either great, or average.

yourzero2 karma

Where did you walk through when in Indiana?

Edit: Nevermind, found your route map you posted above.

CanuckBacon2 karma

I did have dinner in Indiana one night. I was staying with a guy in Kentucky and so we just went across the river to Madison for dinner at Bob Evans.

comsr2 karma

Do you resent your parents for coming up With a more annoying name than the already awful Tyler?

CanuckBacon3 karma

Skyler (originally Schuyler) was a Dutch name. Alexander Hamilton's father-in-law had the name. It's a few hundred years old. I'm thankful they spelled it in the Americanized way of Skyler rather than Schuyler

UnidentifiedDucttape2 karma

You mentioned in another comment that you were carrying around 60 lb. That sounds like a lot to me (my parents do extended hikes and never go above 25 lb per person), how come you have that much luggage?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I got a lot of my gear secondhand and so none of it is ultralight stuff. I also carried lots of extra food and water, basically everything I needed to survive in the woods for a week. Stuff like a jetboil stove, water filter, etc. I also carried a lot of clothes since I don't like buying them so I just got them all at once and used the same clothes for an extended period of time.

60lbs was fully loaded, more commonly it weighed closer to 50lbs.

jimipops2 karma

Where do you spend the nights? Do you carry a tent with you?

CanuckBacon6 karma

Yeah, most nights were in a tent, other times I'd have friends and family along the way, and I also used CouchSurfing to find hosts. There were a few times people stopped on the side of the road and offered me a place to stay. Seemed a little weird at the start, but all worked out!

tigglet2 karma

Are you going to be hitching one of those kiddie trailers to the back of your bike to carry your stuff? Good luck!

CanuckBacon3 karma

I'm going with two side panniers and a small backpack, my friend is doing the same.

afton7 karma

Your going to ride across Canada with a backpack on? No no no. Get front panniers or a trail along; you will despise that backpack in remarkably short order.

Also, I've had friends ride across Canada. They did not enjoy the prairies at ALL. Good luck my dude.

CanuckBacon2 karma

After the Rockies, I think I'll welcome the endless flatness.

rkjjhv4 karma

Bring bungees so you can attach the backpack to your rack. You won't want to be wearing it.

CanuckBacon2 karma

It's just a little camelbak for some easy water access. I know some people hate anything on their back when riding but I don't mind too much.

AHoboWithAHome2 karma

How will you make money to support yourself after all this is over/while it's going on? Have you saved a ton before embarking? Thanks and gl OP

CanuckBacon5 karma

I worked at a grocery store (Dairy department represent!), I live simply and just save up as much money as I can.

gkp852 karma

How much money did you actually raise? Because these endeavors are almost always just a bullshit publicity cover that people use because they want to go have adventures instead of work - and they need somebody else to pay for it.

CanuckBacon11 karma

I won't be touching any of the money that goes towards Alzheimer research, that goes directly to the Alzheimer Society of Canada through Canadahelps. I am funding this trip myself and so expenses incurred fall squarely on my shoulders.

InfiniteFuckery2 karma

I love that you're doing this! My papa passed away from Alzheimer's about 12 years ago. Living in edmonton, I'll warn you to pack some thermal undergarments and a warm coat. It's still winter in a few places here right now. It's only going to be about 12°C (53°F) here today. But I wish you all the best! This country is beautiful as it rises from the desolate grip of winter. What will your sleeping arrangements be? It's still a bit cold to camp up here lol

CanuckBacon2 karma

I won't be there for another month, so hopefully it warms up by then!

If you know anywhere my friend and I can stay in Edmonton, let me know!

tylerjarvis2 karma

Hey Skyler!

Andrea and I were just in Duncan, BC on vacation. Too bad we didn't plan this better, you could have stayed with us again.

I hope your trip goes well. We'll make a donation to the trip!

And it's making me ask a question, so I guess I'll ask what kind of bike you're using? Did you buy new bikes, or are you using an old one?

CanuckBacon2 karma

Hey buddy! Glad you and Andrea are doing well!

A friend gave me a Kona. It's a bit older but still in decent shape. My friend Mario who is cycling with me is riding a brand new Giant, which is a proper touring bike.

sumair72302 karma

How much money you have collected yet?

CanuckBacon3 karma

BoogTKE2 karma

Are you trying to turn your travels into a book deal? I’ve read a couple different books from people who just start walking and blogging, and it turns into a full published book.

CanuckBacon3 karma

Yeah, I meant to write a book after my walk, but just never was able to sit down and write it. It's one of those things I eventually want to do but keep putting it off.

fuckboi372 karma

Were you inspired by Forrest Gump?

But seriously, I think what you're doing is great. Do you love what you do? Any other hobbies besides going extreme distances on not-so-extreme means of transportation?

CanuckBacon4 karma

Nope, but I still think it's a pretty good movie.

I absolutely love what I do, or I wouldn't be doing it.

Hobbies include, making Hard apple cider, making maple syrup, trivia, videogames, and city politics.

Zergoth_Thrash1 karma

Why don't people just donate without having somebody needlessly walk? Also I find it's better for good deeds not to be flaunted.

CanuckBacon1 karma

I think sometimes people don't necessarily come across some diseases or problems in their daily life, so I am helping to bring some awareness to it and encouraging people to donate. It helps people to know that other people are donating too. Sometimes people just need a little push.

chufi1 karma

Who are you? Where am I?

CanuckBacon3 karma

I'm Skyler, you're currently in the Matrix.

Chloecannolies1 karma

What was the scariest ting to happen on your trip?

CanuckBacon2 karma

Armadillos at night, they seem harmless but if you just hear the movement it can nearly scare the shit out of you.

DefineTheLine1 karma

How did you make sure you took the safest route possible as far as sketchy neighborhoods and such?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I relied on local advice as I was walking through places. I mostly relied on google maps. Sometimes I walked through sketchy places but never ran into any trouble.

PicklesMcBoots1 karma

Have you considered the Coquihalla might still be in its own private winter?

Is there someone following you in a car or something, or are you just by your onesies?

CanuckBacon1 karma

It's just me and my best friend doing this, both of us on bikes.

Hopefully it's still passable. We recently had a snowstorm in southern Ontario, which is unusual for this late. Hopefully it's not too bad on the trip.

lol_camis1 karma

Victorian here. Where and when will you be starting?

CanuckBacon2 karma

I'll be starting at my cousin's house in Victoria. I fly in tonight, and will probably set out on Saturday or Sunday. Gotta still pick up some last minute gear and I want to do a little sightseeing first.

iorgfeflkd1 karma

Why start in Victoria and not Vancouver? You'll have to take a boat!

CanuckBacon3 karma

I've never been to Victoria, I figured I might as well see it and Nanaimo while I'm out west. I also never like to make it too easy on myself, gotta just tack on a few extra kilometers of riding!

bozoconnors1 karma

I am Skyler

What, like Madonna, or Sting? Must be hell trying to get a bank account / anything official.

CanuckBacon2 karma

I don't really feel like broadcasting my full name since I'm also a redditor. Besides after Skyler White, I gotta bring some goodness back to the name.

benzerade-2 karma

Where is American?

CanuckBacon3 karma

No idea, I blame whatever idiot wrote the title and didn't check it twice to make sure I, I mean they, didn't make any foolish mistakes.

russianpotato-10 karma

Couldn't you do something useful with your life. Like what good does walking or biking do anyone? No one needs anymore "awareness" of diseases... what they need are money and cures! Study hard to be a scientist or work for some really money to put towards that science. Useless.... don't try to couch your travel as some cause.

CanuckBacon7 karma

I don't have the skills or ability to do research. My hope is that I can bring some awareness to it and raise money for Alzheimer's. We all contribute in our own ways, this is my way.

I'm also doing this bicycle ride because I want to see my home of Canada, and I want to spend time with my best friend. This is a good and worthwhile way to do that while contributing to something meaningful.

russianpotato-3 karma

You know what a great way to raise money is? Do work and donate that money, instead of going on vacation and asking other people to pay for it...I'm on to you.

CanuckBacon3 karma

I'm funding this trip myself. If you like I could just go off and do this trip without raising money for Alzheimer? I did that with my walking across America trip and I've decided to try and do something that can help others on this one.

Samv173-14 karma

I don’t understand how riding a bike is going to raise money. Why don’t you just get a real job like everyone else and then donate? This honestly sounds like a scam

CanuckBacon4 karma

The site is through Canada Helps, I don't touch the donations at all.

I did get a job, and I saved up to do this trip. When I finish this trip, I'll get a job again.

I'm doing this because I like to travel and I like to do it slowly. I'm raising money, for Alzheimer because my grandfather had it before he passed away in January and I want to do something to honour his memory.