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Wednesday, 15 April 2015 13:24

Eight to 80 at 80 in 80 days a worthwhile cause

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Take notice - what Dale Sanders will do is amazing.


In the August, 2014 edition of Your Life is Now, we met Dale, aka The Grey Beard Adventurer. That was a while ago, so in case you don’t remember, this summer he’ll begin an epic journey that will enter him in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Dale’s trip has a noble purpose. It’s to raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Dale’s 10-year-old grand-niece Anna is afflicted with juvenile diabetes.

“We hope with all our heart that through the efforts of JDRF not only Anna but children from around the world will someday enjoy life without this dreaded disease,” said Dale.

And how will this soon-to-be 80-year-old get in the Guinness and raise money for medical research? He’s going to do what any senior with a great beard, a smart phone and oodles of energy would do. He’s going to canoe the entire Mississippi River, a distance of 2,340 miles or 3,765 kms.

And wait, it gets better. He’s only giving himself 80 days to complete the trip. Why 80 days? Because that number reflects his age.

Is Dale crazy? Maybe, but crazy like a fox.

Dale’s colourful past is closely linked to water. He began canoeing in the mid-1950s and in 1961 was the Unites States national spearfishing champion. He’s currently a member of a conservancy group that promotes watershed protection and fosters human connection to wild places.

Dale is accepting donations from $8 to $80 dollars per mile paddled. Given the significance of the dollar amount, Dale’s age and the number of days he’ll be on the water, the trip is sometimes called 8 to 80 at 80 in 80 Days, a fitting title indeed. 100% of the money raised goes to the JDRF.

The preparations are nearing completion. The journey will begin in June at Lake Itasca, Minnesota, which is the source of the Mississippi where it begins its wandering route south towards the Gulf of Mexico.

Dale will be paddling a customized Wenonah canoe weighing less than 40 pounds. The yellow Kevlar canoe features skid plates, a Bluetooth waterproof speaker along with a parasol to protect from the summer sun. Dale christened the boat Anna.

You can find Dale Sanders on Facebook, but I also encourage you to visit his website Dale will be updating his location with a Spot tracker so you’ll be able to follow his progress daily online. Donations can be made on his website. Best of luck, Dale!



Read 7632 times Last modified on Friday, 17 April 2015 06:09
Dominique Liboiron

Dominique Liboiron is a speaker, author, teacher, journalist and photographer. To raise awareness about heart disease and to honour the life of one of its victims, Liboiron canoed from Saskatchewan to New Orleans. He is the first person to undertake that journey. He enjoys outdoor sports such as camping, hunting, fly fishing and canoeing.