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Whistler latest stop on three-year world tour

Israeli cyclist a rolling goodwill ambassador for his country



An Israeli man with a taste for adventure is biking the world on a three-year trip to teach people about Israel.

Roy Sadan, 25, rolled into Whistler Tuesday afternoon, 75 days into his trip, soaking wet, with a tent, lap top, and audio equipment strapped to his bike.

He began cycling on July 25 th from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska. He followed the highway south to the Rockies and then west to Whistler. From Whistler, he will bike to the tip of South America, then travel to South Africa. From South Africa he will ride north to Kenya then on to Portugal. From Portugal he will go east, to Hong Kong, and then across Australia. His total trip is estimated to be about 5,000 km.

Throughout his travels, Sadan will be talking to people about his home country in the Middle East.

“Lots of people are interested in Israel, about the situation and how is life in Israel, so I have done a lot of nice talking. I am in connection with the Israeli Internal Affairs and they gave me some course on talking about Israel,” said Sadan.

“I am like an Ambassador of Goodwill, so people can understand that not all Israelis have a gun in their hands. We are normal people, like you,” he said.

So far, Sadan’s expedition has involved at least six hours a day biking, or approximately 100 km per day. He has already shed 30 pounds in the past two and half months but said his body is coping well with the large physical demands of the trip.

Back in Israel, Sadan works as an adventurer, and his list of accomplishments includes a 12-month stint in the Himalayas, where he completed a mountain climbing course with the Indian army.

Before departing for Alaska this summer, Sadan spent six months mentally preparing for the many hours he will have to spend by himself over the next three years.

“I did mental training, not physical training. Mental training is the most important because I am doing it alone. And if you are doing it alone, you need to know yourself,” he said.

Sadan added that people have greeted him with mixed reactions as he slowly makes his way south across the continent.

“It is amazing. Sometimes the reaction is like I am coming from the moon. And sometimes people just look at me like ‘Wow’, and they are just talking with their eyes,” said Sadan.

“Sometime people stop me on the side, ask me what is going on, ask me for my signature or my photo, it is very nice. Cheering on the side, always waving, always honking,” he said.

Backed by sponsoring, Sadan is sending videos of his travels back to an Israeli news channel every few weeks to keep Israelis updated on his trip. He does not yet have a website, but hopes to launch one within the next month.

Sadan said that he has enjoyed Canada, especially British Columbia, and that people have been very welcoming. He added that the landscape in North America is very different to his home country.

“Israel is very small, it is 500 km from north to south. We don’t have these kind of remote places. Everything is big in British Columbia. And you don’t have desert here, but in the area of Kamloops, where the pine beetle’s been, it looks like desert,” said Sadan.

As for when he plans to leave Whistler and continue south to Vancouver, Sadan had not yet decided at the time of interview.

“I don’t know. I just arrived here. I just want to eat something, and then after that I will think about where I will spend the next night,” he said.

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