Sarah Outen takes on the frozen north

Rutland adventurer Sarah Outen in Canada. EMN-141211-190309001
Rutland adventurer Sarah Outen in Canada. EMN-141211-190309001
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Rutland adventurer Sarah Outen is battling over snow-covered mountains on the final leg of her round-the-world trip.

Sarah, 29, from Oakham, is currently cycling through Alberta, Canada, as she attempts to navigate the world by manpower alone.

Posting on her blog at www.sarahouten.com, the former Stamford School pupil said she was enjoying an enforced rest while her bike, Hercules, got some much-needed care and attention.

She wrote: “A couple of days ago I cycled into Alberta from British Columbia, on a happily unloaded Hercules as a recent host from Dawson Creek happened to be driving that way on that day, and so took most of my luggage.

“I am glad because the front wheel bearing had been feeling rather unhealthy for the last 500km, meaning I was working extra hard for my miles (think of riding with the brakes on). Coupled with a family of unhappy spokes in the back wheel that were starting to pop and fold, I was glad to finally make it to a bike shop that could give him some TLC.

“The enforced rest days while waiting for Hercules have also been welcome, even though I have had lots of these recently and sometimes have to remind myself I am cycling across the country. In fact, in the last three weeks I have only cycled eight days – resting and waiting seems to have been the default, either waiting to banish germs or waiting for treatment slots for either myself or Hercules with local (very busy and spatially distinct) specialists.

“It feels like we are both ready to crack on again – a sort of Sarah and Herc V 2.0 (winter edition), now that Herc is back from the docs. A few inches of snow have fallen in the last six hours or so too, meaning white riding again for at least tomorrow.”

During her ride, which began in Alaska, Sarah has been learning the history of the indigenous people of North America. She has shared stories of the “residential schools” set up by the Canadian government in the 1800s to integrate indigenous people into the white society.

Sarah was shocked by what she heard, writing: “For survivors, the effects have been inter-generational and lasting, both personally and culturally. Language and culture transmission have been thwarted, families have been devastated by violence, abuse and addiction and the cycle of abuse and trauma continues for many.”