Seattle, Wash.s — A Seattle father and daughter will pedal in a 3,400-mile, cross-country bike ride
all in an effort of raising awareness and funding to protect northwest Orcas.
Orcas are critically endangered in the Puget Sound area and despite recovery efforts, their numbers are dwindling.
Fourteen-year-old Olivia Carpenter, a lifelong enthusiast of whales and the Salish Sea, says it's her goal in life to protect and save them.
"That's why this summer, I am going to ride a tandem bicycle across the United States of America with my dad," she wrote on her blog.
Olivia and her dad, John Carpenter, had a send-off on Saturday from Golden Gardens. The two avid cyclists will take nine weeks, hopefully averaging 63 miles a day, to complete the Seattle-to-Boston trip on Olivia's 15th birthday.
John, who is an IT Director at Seattle's Madrona Venture Group,
that some creative technology will aid in the effort. A Dynamo generator hub on the front wheel will power the front and rear taillights as well as a USB charger built into the bike.
He will also wear a Bluetooth wireless headset to get directions from a cycling app called
But they will not be relying on tech alone; Olivia and John have trained for months in preparation, cycling around Seattle and the San Juan Islands.
“It’s such a different experience being on an open road in farmland on a bike than the hectic busy streets of Seattle and a daily commute,”
. "Olivia will have an opportunity to raise awareness as we travel across the country and meet a lot of people who have different views than we do out here in the Pacific Northwest."
The family hopes to raise $10,000 to support The Orca Network.
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