Boston man cycles across America to raise awareness for climate change

BOSTON — Alan Wright left Roslindale on May 22 on a one-man mission.

“So, I’m having fun. Unless it gets too hot out west, I think I have this one in the bag,” he said.

The 67-year-old retired health care worker rode his bicycle cross-country to raise awareness for climate change. Many days were long and hard, but the scenery was breathtaking. Wright camped underneath the stars and some nights he was taken in by families who volunteer to host bicyclists in their homes.

“It’s fascinating. Once I camped in someone’s backyard, most of the time I was in their guest bed, sometimes they’d feed me meals,” Wright said.

Wright started out on a solo ride but ended up riding with other cyclists on his cross-country journey, including a young couple from Mexico.  They were biking from Virginia to Seattle.

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Wright and his companions crossed into South Dakota safely, but they went their own ways once they reached Yellowstone National Park. Wright was forced to take several detours shortly after riding through Yellowstone due to the massive wildfires.

“There were days when it was extremely hot and hazy. I actually wore, for the better part of one day, an N95 mask just to try to reduce the respiratory distress I was experiencing,” Wright said.

But he finally made it to Oregon. On Aug. 5, after arriving in Seaside, it was mission accomplished; Wright had cycled from sea to shining sea.

“There’s something really wonderfully magical about riding a bicycle across the country,” he said.

Wright rode more than 4,200 miles over 73 days. That was only half the trip. After riding across the country, Wright saw America from another cool vantage point: he rode Amtrak from Oregon home to Boston.

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