Sea to Sound group ride begins today

PORT ANGELES — The three-day Sea to Sound group ride across much of the North Olympic Peninsula begins today.

Ian Mackay, who has been paralyzed from the neck down since a bicycle crash in 2008, is hosting the ride.

The Agnew man gained international attention when he rode his wheelchair from Port Angeles to Portland in 2016 and from Coeur d’Alene to Agnew last year.

His aim this weekend is to promote accessibility and encourage people to get outside, call attention to the progress of the Olympic Discovery Trail and raise funds for the Peninsula Trails Coalition, a group of volunteers who promote construction, maintenance and use of the trail.

The ride is for anyone — cyclists, wheelchair-users, horseback riders and foot traffic — and participants can join the ride for only sections or for the whole trip.

“It’s looking like we will have over 50 participants on this group ride, and somewhere around 15 wheelchair users that will be joining us on at least one of the days,” Mackay said in an email Wednesday.

The first day will begin at 10 a.m. at the Camp Creek trailhead west of Lake Crescent and continue to the Elwha River bridge on the ODT. Shuttles will be available today to help people get around Lake Crescent.

Day 2 — Saturday — will start at 9 a.m. at the Elwha bridge and end at Diamond Point.

Sunday’s ride will commence at 11 a.m. at the Diamond Point trailhead and continue to Port Townsend.

Shuttles also will be available Sunday to help people get from Discovery Bay to Four Corners.

Mackay said he doesn’t recommend that anyone in a wheelchair or on a bicycle try to navigate the route along state Highway 20 from Discovery Bay to Port Townsend.

However, the entire trail from the Elwha Bridge to Diamond Point is wheelchair-accessible, he said.

Mackay said 15 area businesses are serving as sponsors.

“We will be having support stations at roughly five-mile intervals where we are offering shuttle services and other support if anyone needs it,” he said.

“We have also offered to help move people from Port Angeles out to Camp Creek if that helps enable them to join us on the trail. We have just asked people to reach out to us if they are in need of this service.

“Similarly, we are happy to return people and their bikes, or wheelchairs, back to the starting point at the end of the day so they can retrieve their vehicles.

Mackay plans to stop for beer after each day’s ride and welcomes company, he said.

The plan for tonight is to stop at the Bar Hop brewery, 2506 W. 19th St., in Port Angeles.

The second night involves a stop at the Peninsula Taproom, 210 W. Washington St., Suite 4 in Sequim.

The third stop is at the Pourhouse, 2231 Washington St., in Port Townsend.

For more information or to donate, visit www.ians ride.com.

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