2002 Walk Comments

THANK YOU to everyone for participating in the very successful 2002 GREAT WALK.
THANK YOU for the comments and suggestions - hope to see you all on
June 07, 2003 for the 26th annual GREAT WALK.

Just wanted to pass on our sincerest thanks to you and all the other
volunteers at the 25th annual Great Walk. I've participated in a few
walking events over the years including the Victoria marathon (1999) and
Portland marathon (2000), and the organization, support and encouragement at
the Great Walk was the BEST.

Jackie Gill (#447) on behalf of Faune Johnson and Mike Goldstein 

Hi from the girls at Checkpoint 8, Chris, Myra & Anne, What a busy day it was Saturday! We enjoyed the experience and it seemed each of us found our area of work naturally. Myra was the cheering section, I was the "waterer" and Anne was the food lady. The guys were busy doing all the other jobs and it seemed to flow well until Myra and I got busy looking after Claire. Myra would really like to know how Claire did, she was the lady who came into town in the ambulance. If you could find out anything, she'd be happy to know. Thanks for putting us up in the house, we got our coffee at the Restaurant in the morning before getting out to our Checkpoint. The Walkers coming through our Checkpoint had alot of positive things to say about the Walk this Year. Mostly they said it was the best organized ever and the volunteers were great. I think all of your hard work was very worthwhile and if there is to be a Walk next year, you should be very confident that it would go well. Thank you for the opportunity to help with the Walk and yes, we would do it again!
Your hard work and dedication paid off in a big way! The organization and volunteer work was exceptionally well organized and evident. What great community spirit. We loved the crew that were clapping and banging on pots and pans as we entered town. All the extras; the fire truck with the siren, the Welcome banner, the cheering folks, the well organized crew at CMESS, all the first aid and paramedics were so helpful, the supper and many more extras were all excellent (the homemade soup was so yummy) and well appreciated. Many thanks. Once again thanks for all your hard work. An excellent job well done! Cheers! Jocelyn Bystrom
Hello, We would like to say thank you to all the volunteers and organizers of the Great Walk. This was our first time participating in the walk and we were amazed at how well organized the event was. The volunteers were absolutely incredible! Their support and encouragement was beyond belief. Please give them our sincere thanks. Ritchie Fulla #143 Dean Fulla #142 Wendy Lunde #141 All Great Walk Finishers!
Hello, Just to let you know that I think that you did a great job on the organization of the Great Walk. We enjoyed our day and walked it 52 mins faster than 2 years ago. We stayed with a woman called Pat Buzit and found her hospitable and helpful. I would recomend her to any one who needs a place to stay in the future. Thanks you so much for all of your work. We likely do it again, maybe in two years time. Carol Sharpe
I just wanted to thank you and your army of volunteers for making the walk possible. I had a wondeful time, the scenery was incredible (although we are so lucky to live on the most beautiful island in the world), and the company...how many? about 1000? was great! These type of functions do not happen without the cooperation of the entire community and the work of many. Your efforts are greatly appreciated. I hope you will be able to continue offering this challenge to many more people in the years to come. I may be back again! Thanks again for a job well done! Sharon MacDonald Safe and sound in Sooke
Just wanted to thank you and all the people involved in the "2002 Great Walk". It was our first time and we were extremely impressed on how well organized the event was, and how cheerful and supportive everyone was. The smiles and encouraging comments kept us going. Thanks Gold River and Tahsis! Colleen, Brianna, and Kelsey MacLean
Thanks to the Volunteers of the "Great Walk" this year! You did a great job. This was my "first" (and probably last) walk and I'm really glad I did it. It must take an incredible amount of organization for two small communities to put something like this together. Thanks again. Alice Padgham
Thanks to you & all the other awesome volunteers for a super 1st great walk for me. Tahsis & Gold River are great communities with spirit & I will enjoy visiting them again. Super organization & frindly helpful people. Thanks again from #84! Wendy B
Just a brief note to thank you and all of the other volunteers for once again putting on a first class event!! You all do such a great job. This was my fifth year doing the walk, and my husband and I would like to give something back to this event -- so please put our names down as volunteers for next year. We will be happy to help out wherever needed, but would probably be happiest if we could be stationed at one of the checkpoints. Thanks again for the "Super Great Walk" we really did appreciate it. Gerry Giles
Congratulations on organizing a terrific event (as usual). The heat was a killer, but I finished it - and knocked off over an hour from last year, so I am pleased with myself, even though I can't move at the moment! I met your daughter on "heartbreak hill" - I hope she made it. She's a great kid. See you next year (NOT!!) and thanks for all your assistance with my mixed-up registration. Jan J
I had an awesome time on the Great Walk. I'll be there most likely next year. Thank you for such excellent organization. Mike Geselbracht walker 843
Having finished the 2002 Great Walk in 12:55, #s 45 & 46, we would like to thank you for an exceptionally well organized walk. We participated two years ago with a support vehicle and after this year of doing it without, we both feel it was much better walk without. The ability to send your backpack on ahead to whichever checkpoint you wished was wonderful and certainly worked to keep our walk going smoothly. We would never do it again with a support vehicle. At some times I personally felt that I was being pushed off the road by some of the support vehicles. The friendly waves of the road monitors were greatly appreciated. As well we would like to thank the people who manned the checkpoints for their enthusiasm and encouragement and the good wishes of those volunteers at the finish line in Tahsis. Keep up the good work. Thanks again for a great time. Cherie and Robert Newton
And finally, but most importantly....we can not thank you and all the volunteers enough for the amazing event that you pulled off. This was our first trip up for the Walk and we were so impressed with how well it was run. The baggage transportation between checkpoints was flawless, the refreshments were excellent (loved those cookies!) and what can you say about all those great people? The encouragement and support from everyone at the checkpoints and along the route to the paramedics (who were obviously working at capacity) was absolutely phenomenal. Be very proud with what you have accomplished and please pass our thanks and appreciation on to all. Cheers, Jennifer Lesley Tom & Ruth
Thanks to you and your community for putting on a great race ,I hope that you are planning to run one again next year! P.S. Will you be posting the results soon? Carlos Castillo
I want to thank all of the volunteers from the bottom of my heart for another job well done!!! It never ceases to amaze me how well organized it is, and how smoothly it appears to run. Especially as the participation has doubled in the last 5 years and the volunteer base (due to economics) has probably dwindled. I appreciate the long hours and the ungodly hours that you have all put into this event. The available souvenirs were great, and I brought my $$ this time - The first aid team was great - I know , as I had blisters for the 1st time and brought 3 individuals in for heat exhaustion. The pool is the most wonderful, and probably the most hidden gem of finish line. It is wonderful to have that open to us. The traffic/support vehicle control was excellent. Suggestions though for future reference: If there is a significant change in in the routine, it should be mentioned in the brochure to notify the repeaters. After depending on the sandwiches at the 1/2 way mark for sustenance, I found it a harsh reality check to find none this year (also those others that I had convinced to join us this year). We would have packed differently (PROTEIN), had I known . I did notice that the assortment of goodies at each station was more, and I thank you for that. Bumper stickers ... did they get found? Could we order them on line????? Thank you again for a wonderful positive experience!!! Sherry Maligaspe,
After a long and hot 16 hours and about 20 minutes, my friend and I (first time greatwalkers) rang that bell at the end of the Great Walk. The welcome we had received from the moment we arrived in Gold River to the time we walked through Tahsis is unbelievable. I have never known such encouragement and warmth as was given so freely by the people of both communities, and from the bottom of my heart (not to mention my feet) a great big huge THANK YOU to every one of you. The people who manned the registration desks for twelve hours, those who made us cookies and soup and gave us water and massages, the support vehicles that encouraged us along the way and watched out for us, and the children who shouted congratulations and encouragement as we walked the last 100 metres. Without you all, it would have been much harder. Thank you also to the first aiders and the medics who gave oxygen and comfort and bandaged damaged feet and restored the spirit as well as the body. I don't know if I will ever do the walk again, ask me once my feet stop aching, but I'm glad I did it. The scenery was spectacular, but not as spectacular as you. Jean Manktelow #225
This was my first greatwalk, and I must say a huge thank you to all the cheerful volunteers. You all truly made us feel welcome, and tended to our every need. We were most relieved to find that you changed the rules regarding the support vehicles. You may remember our concern prior to the walk, about the starting times. We were thrilled that our support vehicle could leave at 8 AM, not 6:30 as stated in the rules. This made it so much better for our crew to have a good sleep, then meet us at the half way mark, rather than following the bus at 6:30. And I thank you for changing that at the last moment. We really had a wonderful time, and finished below our estimated time of 12 hours, and we're still walking, "yes"!!!! Valerie
We were so impressed with the friendliness of the volunteers and the incredibly well organized event. You all truly made it so much fun. I've gone in lots of organized events (including the LA Marathon) and I've never been so impressed as on the Great Walk. Thanks! Margo Hay
Good luck with the event next year. We had heard rumours that this year was the last one. Am certain there will be many people pleased to hear that your tradition continues on. By the way, our group of four talked about how we would have liked to have made a small cash donation to the Lions Club as thanks for your extras. Perhaps you may want to consider placing a donation jar/box in a prominent place inside the Centre. I realize many participants raised funds for their favourite charity; however, some of us would probably have contributed a little something on the spot toward your club. Sincerely, Jackie Gill
A HUGE thank you to all the Volunteers & Organizers! This was my first walk and it was great. What a lot of work for so many to organize this event. We found the walk very challenging, but most of all it was beautiful. Being our first walk we were really grateful to have a support vehicle waiting for us at the half way point. I found them all so courteous and very encouraging to everyone. Thanks again, Arlene Dorward
Hi Great Walk Organizers, I had a great experience on Saturday and must say I am pleased that my muscles are almost back to normal. My compliments to all of you for a job extremely well done. I was impressed with all the volunteers especially all those at the great checkpoints. The goodies were much appreciated. You all did a great job so thanks a lot. (#901) Ida McDonald
Thank you for everything, we had a GREAT time, the blisters are healing but can not put on socks yet, See you next year!!! Mimi Roy
My friend, Jackie Gill, sent a thank you , but I want to send my own. I had a wonderful time on the Great Walk. The support and encouragement was absolutely outstanding and we would love to do it again. It was such a carefully planned event with so many services. My friend Judy had a wonderful time, too, and is looking for the next opportunity to do it. I really recommend Air Nootka, as well; the flight back to Gold River was beautiful. Thanks again, Faune Johnson
Hello all, just a note to say thanks for all of the organizing, community support and eventful day.You all did a great job!!!!!!! On behalf of the walkers , I thank-you. Just a question, are the over-all results going to be posted on the web site this year? thanks again , Wendy Cole
Thank you for the great support. It was an experience will never forget. Larry Bryant, Tacoma Wa.
To all the organizers and volunteers of this year's Great Walk: I wanted to officially thank you for organizing this well managed event. This was the first year my walking partner (or "blister sister") and I tried the Walk, and while we certainly found it challenging (occasionaly painful), we were consistently impressed with the volunteers along the way. From the folks in Gold River who were up/still awake for the 4am start, to the cheerful and encouraging volunteers at every rest stop, to the angels of mercy in Tahsis -- everyone was kind, cheerful, and helpful. There were a couple of individuals to whome we wanted to send special thanks: * The man at rest stop #6 who was in charge of finding/collecting/retagging hundreds of packs. (We didn't get his name, but it may have started with an M!) -- your patience seemed boundless! * The first aid volunteer (male) at rest stop #9 (or #10 -- they were starting to blur at that point!) who wrapped my walking partner's throbbing knee so kindly * The woman in the blue (Suburban?) support truck (she was wearing a headband with funny antennae) -- your encouragement en route to #9 in particular was much appreciated. ("You just have to put one foot in front of the other"...) * Ken-the-bus-organizer in Tahsis, who had a kindly face to match his very kind manner * All of the first-aid volunteers in the Tahsis gym -- your humour after a long day was also much appreciated. And, although he was not a volunteer, we both thought that Steven Royer (4hrs 32 minutes!!!) should be commended on sticking around to cheer every finishing walker across the line. The Gold River and Tahsis communities have created a very special event. Thanks very much. Sue Doner, #561 (and Mary Robinson, #605)
A BIG thank you to all the volunteers of the Great Walk. I couldn't be more impressed with the service and the friendliness. It seems over the years, everything has been thought of to offer the optimum comfort and support for the participants. For example, water jugs before the big hill...being a first time participant, I didn't know why they were there until after climbing that long hill; I couldn't help but congratulate you guys for thinking of that!!! Those cookies were delicious and the handling so clean!! Thanks for discouraging the use of support vehicles; people said it was much better, plus with your wonderful check points, I think it was easier without a support vehicle! I could go on and on about positve things. Thanks so much!!! Linda from Ladysmith
Hi there, I just wanted to let you know that you guys did an awesome job once again. I dont know if it was my imagination, or just that I was walking at a different pace to last year, but I thought there were few support vehicles. :) I dont see the need for anyone unless they are runners to have one as long as you continue with that wonderful service of taking things from checkpoint to other checkpoints. This made the world of difference to my back, not having to lug everything along. Please please continue to provide this service. Two things to note that maybe for next year could be considered. 1) I understand that the health dept said no sandwiches etc allowed because of mayonaise. However, plain buns, or crackers like the soup ones at several rest stops would be great. If not, maybe state that only fruit and granola bars and pretzels will be provided.......then we will know to pack stuff in our bags that get sent ahead if we dont eat granola bars. I think some type of carbohydrate that is not fruit, and not sweet, should be provided. Please dont stop serving the pretzels, unless you put that info in the sign up info. Without the salt I think there would be many medical problems. 2) Last year when we took the late bus back to Gold River the rec center was closed and we had no access to a phone to call the B and B to come pick us up. One of us had to run up to the nearest phone to call. We were told this year the rec center would be open, but when we got there (on a bus that left 30 mins earlier) it was locked again. We were lucky to find someone just leaving through a side door so he let us in. But then he left, and had we been on our regular bus, we would have had to send someone up to the other phone again. Perhaps if the rec center cannot be open, the bus could drop people off at the vistor info center (and make sure the phone there is working). Or, again, put a note in the sign up info to state that no phone will be available when you return to Gold River. Thank you again for an amazing day! Jim; Esther and Laurie
I want to thank you and all the organizers of the wonderful "Great Walk"!! I enjoyed the whole event very much. 6 of us came from North Vancouver. The people at the Rest stations were so supportive, the cookies, fruit juice and water were so good! The port-a-potties really great and always just where they were needed!! The rest stop where they served the soup (#6,I think) was especially life-saving as they also had the Vaseline for my toes! Also being able to send my jacket on by truck to the end, was great! An unexpected help! Great idea to serve us pretzels too as the salt replacement is needed! At the end you made me really feel I had achieved something! The fire engines clang, all the people along the road to the finishing line, big brass Bell, the certificate, the t-shirt, the medal were FANTASTC!!! The medal was a real surprise! I was also grateful to the first aid people who treated my blisters! Thank you for the web page and all the updates! WOW! what an enormous project! The scenery and beauty of the area is much appreciated too! I can't wait till next year! My son thinks it sounds wonderful! How great that so much money has been raised to help those less fortunate. Sincerely, Susan Steed
Hello ! I am from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. This is the first year I did the walk. I was very impressed with the volunteers at every check point. They were more than help full. They tried to do as much as possible for the walkers. It was a great help to transport the back packs from station to station. It took a load off the walkers. I was not to keen on the walkers vechiles as some slowed down when they passed , but others would just whip by us and of course it was very dusty. This is the only complaint I have . My sister walked last year and she did miss the sandwiches at every station. Overall a great job and I would do it again !! The Great Walk says it all GREAT !!!! Thank you Barb
I just wanted to say Thank you to all of the wonderful people who volunteered to make the walk possible for all of us who are crazy enough to try it. Also to let you know that I would like to volunteer to help out next year. Heather MacKenzie
Once Again, Tahsis and Gold River you have demonstrated your extreme hospitality in the way you Welcome us Walkers. I have done the Great Walk 6 consecutive times and the feeling of arriving at Tahsis has not diminished in spite of the economic difficulties your community is facing. The thrill of completing the Great Walk is always enhanced by your community pride. Thank you to all the Organizers and Checkpoint Personnel. Without your efforts, We could not accomplish this unique event, where everyone is a winner. I look forward to taking part in next years Great Walk. See you on June 7 2003. Best Regards Doug Lanigan
The thankyous that should be sent your way are endless. Well organized, fantastic upbeat volunteers; an extreme pleasure to have finally participated. I expected the route to be gruelling but, must admit, did not realize how much of a challenge your walk would be. Felt a deep sense of accomplishment at having finished (and finished well I believe). All the advice from previous years' walkers was well given and received. Did not get mislead anywhere that I can think of. Very happy to see that you have scheduled 2003's walk already. I will be there DEFINITELY (may have to coerce my partner with a few beer however). Still on a high from the morning/day/night of Jun 1. YOU GUYS ARE AWESOME. A special thanks to the owners/operators of the Ridge Motel in Gold River... you made us feel very welcome and accommodated. If not before, see you next year. Clay M. Sanders Ladysmith, B.C.
Hi!! Just a note of thanks for all the volunteers involved in The Great Walk - you are all terrific. As for the food at the check stops - please bring back the sandwiches!! We need more than granola bars, cookies and fruit to make the finish line. Don't get me wrong the food provided was good but we all needed some non-sweet carbohydrates and some protein to replentish our bodies. Off the subject of food and onto socks - 100% cotton is NOT the way to go. You need to wear a water wicking sock - I wore Thorlos but there are many different brands and weights of wicking socks out there. You will only need 2 pairs at most. Thanks again for a Great Walk. Anne Harmston Comox Valley Hospice Team with a Dream
I want to thank you for everything regarding the Great Walk. It was very well run and I felt everyone was looked after beautifully. My bag was at every stop I asked for and even stuff I took off and no bag ended up at the finish line. If I have any negative remark at all it would be to cancell the support vehicles entirely. I found them a nuisance on the road especially at the end when you are so exhausted and had to move over to let them by and then eat their dust to boot. Of course, the road monitors and transport vehicles are necessary but I don't feel the need for support vehicles when there is ample stops and so well looked after. Thanks again and good luck next year. Betty Lou Matheson
We thoroughly enjoyed the walk and were very impressed with how well organized the event was. We are certainly planning to see you again next year. Walkers - Marcia McNeil and Scott Sutherland
Re: Comments and Thanks THANK YOU! A big thank you to all the volunteers of the Great Walk and to all those friendly people of Tahsis and Gold River. Wow! All the volunteers did a really wonderful job. It's a real treat to have someone pour cold water on your head to cool you down. The last 30 km were hot ones. It was also terrific to have people meet you on the road to give you gatorade before you even got to the checkpoint. All those little things really count. COMMENTS As for the walk, this was my first time doing the Great Walk and yes! I made it! I went with my dad, my brother and few friends of ours and they all made it as well. As painful as it was I think I may do it again next year but with a little more training. We've backpacked the West Coast Trail and the Rock Wall but you cannot compare these hikes to the Great Walk. You have to have the proper mind set. Be positive and tell yourself you'll make it and you will. I must tell you it does get rather painful in the end. Every step ..... pretty much hurts - just a little leg pain no big deal. I only suffered from leg stiffness for about 2 days after and the odd blister on the toes but that's about it. I wore one pair of blister free socks and over top a thicker walking sock - no cotton at all. I didn't even need to change my socks - they felt great. I have no negative comments. The support vehicles I thought were fine - there weren't too many, not a lot of dust. The only word of caution I have for future walkers is at the end when you finish, don't just stop and stand. There were people including myself almost passing out. I had to lie down for about 30 minutes because I got so dizzy and kinda sickly but I soon came around, ate something, drank some water and I was as good as new. The 2002 was a hot and sunny one so it was probably more likely to occur. Keep hydrated! Very important even when you don't feel like drinking near the end. Little amounts a long the way. I hope to participate again next year. Great job and thanks again for all the hard work. Shelley Gilbert Kamloops, BC
We had a wonderful time for the four hours we worked luggage and the Lions' campsite was perfect. The morning take off an experience never to be forgotton. I'm with the Escapee RV International Club and I'm doing an article for our magazine. Everyone met Kathy Deyo and our Bear Skipper #120 who travelled the distance. Our pictures turned out to be perfect. Now, a favour, please. Could you, would you send me this week's local paper that will have the Walk Highlights in it? I'd be so appreciative. I'll even mail you back the price and postage. We are so happy to see a date set for next year. If all goes well, we'll be back at our posts to help you. Everyone was wonderfully kind and fun. Thanks so much for a memorable experience. Darlene Dean Nanaimo, B.C.
To the 2002 Great Walk committee and volunteers, On behalf of Nanaimo Young Life, I would like to congratulate all of you for a huge job well done. You were all terrific. Was it perfect? No, but what is? You might have had some complaints (not from us) but take it as constructive criticism and feel satisfied with what you have accomplished. Whether or not you hold it again, we will be back to enjoy the scenery and the hospitality. You might be interested to know that our group raised about $13,000 for Young Life Nanaimo, a Christian organization which works to change teenagers lives in a positive way - and there have been many miraculous changes. Thanks for giving us the opportunity to participate. Yours Truly, Hugh D. W. Ney
Just a quick thank you to you and all the many volunteers that worked the greatwalk 2002. I am 60 yrs old and completed the walk in 15.33 hrs, and have filled another great challenge. All was well except it would really be nice if there was some kind of tent or shelter at the start line. I found it very cold and damp and beings that we were there so early it was a miserable start, otherwise all was good and I had a great time and again many thanks to all that put so many hours in to this project. Barb Kroll Sundre, Ab.
This was my first time participating in the Great Walk and the farthest walk I've done to date and I can say that it was one of the high points of my life. Crossing the finish line and beating the time goal I had set for myself was an incredible feeling!!! The volunteers at the regestration, along the way and at the finish were such an impotrant part with their encouragement and by being so helpful and supportive even with the little things, like I forgot my sunscreen and one of the volunteers gave me some of hers and at the end when my bags got lost but I was made to feel like that was everyone's most important priority even though it was probably only my most important priority!! It was a treat to be a part of the day and to be with so many positive people!! Thank-you for the experience and I'm praying that you'll be able to offer the event again next year.............I'm there!!! Thank-you for all your hard work, caring and efforts, Lynn Ujvary #376
Just a quick note to say thank you to all the volunteers and organizers on a great event! The organization was very well done and very much appreciated. I was most impressed! The checkpoints were well set up and managed as well. The encouragement of the road monitors and the volunteers at the checkpoints was most welcome. Thanks for a very well run event! Sincerely Annette Newell Walker #131
Linda and I are still in awe of your wonderful event and great hospitality. Thanks to everyone who made our trip very educational and a lot of fun. We sure had a lot to report back on to our committee meeting yesterday. Maureen Loebus
thanks for all your hard work. It is such a great event, particularly when you realize how small the communities are that are hosting it. This was my third walk and I hope to be there next year. Lori
My wife and I have just returned safe and sound to Lethbridge, Alberta and wanted to congratulate the organizing group for putting on a great event. It was well run and the weather and scenery were great assets, too. Hope this can continue for another 25 years! Doug
Thank you for another successful Great Walk; A huge thank you also to all the numerous enthusiastic and ever cheery, positive and encouraging volunteers. They are wonderful, and greatly appreciated! Will the results be posted on your web-site? I didn't get a chance to see where we placed, and of course am curious! Thanks again, Sharon Johnston, #28
I had a fantastic time on June 1 2002. Participants and volunteers we equally encouraging and friendly. I was more than happy with my time, but I think I can improve it slightly. Just tell me that the walk is on for 2003 and I will start spreading the word throughout the Comox Valley. Once again, thankyou to every one that was involved. John Caddell Fanny Bay
To All of the Organising Committee: This is the second time I have done the walk and once again I'd like to thank all of the organisers and volunteers for making it such a huge success. Having organised many events myself, I know there are so many little things that need to be done to ensure the event's success. Your committee did a fantastic job! All of the rest station people and the road monitors were so friendly and helpful. From the moment we got there to the time we left everyone was great. Coming from the prairies, the walk would have been next to impossible to finish without all of the encouragement along the way. Thank you once again. Ann Sisler
Hi there. I had a fantastic time at the walk. I will be back next year. I must comment on all your fabulous volunteers. They were very impressive. Everything was extremely well organized and efficient. Not to mention the great weather and scenery. Gabe Comolli
Hi there, Just had to send a note while my blisters are cooling to say what a great time we had. This is the most well organized event either of us have been involved in. Well done volunteers, you made the entire thing memorable. You are certainly lucky to live in such a beautiful area. It was a perfect day. Look forward to joining in again next year. Thanks again for such a wonderful experience. Susan and Eric Iverson
I just want to say how impressed I was with the people and the organization I saw on Saturday. It was my first walk and although I didn't finish(for a number of reasons) it was a very positive experience and as soon as possible I will be signing up for 03. Its not often you get to take part in an event of this magnitude and feel totally supported by those people organizing it regardless of your personal results. I guess what I'm trying to say is that as far as I could see no one slipped through the cracks which is rare today considering the scope of the event. A big hats off and thank you to the Lions Club,Tahsis, and Gold River. #977
I participated in the Great Walk this past weekend and I am writing to say a big thank you to all the wonderful volunteers who came forward to allow this event to happen this year. I was very impressed with the organization of the event. The checkpoints were just the right distance apart and were stocked with the appropriate requirements for the extreme effort it took to complete the course. It was indeed a challenge but your efforts made it as enjoyable as it could possibly be. Everyone was so friendly and encouraging. So necessary to keep on going. My two friends and I had a wonderful weekend and sure enjoyed the beautiful scenery as well. The weather couldn't have been any better too! Thanks again. Debi Wight
Glad to have the 7 June date so I can get it on the calendar. Will want to come again and test myself--It's a great tune up for the 300km walk I do in Denmark each July. Again, many thanks. Bill
hi, first off, a HUGE thank you to all the volunteers who helped make it possible to do the great walk this year. without all you folks putting in countless hours, there wouldn't be a walk for us to do!!! i'd also like to thank the bakers of the oatmeal cookies...i must of eaten at least 2 dozen, kept me going. my only suggestion is... would it be possible to have the huge tent (like last year) or somewhere for the tahsis people (who take the 1am shuttle) to sit and keep warm. it's a long wait from 2:30 till 4. we were lucky this year, the weather was fantastic, but if it had been raining or cold it would have been a miserable wait. again thanks to everyone for a great weekend!!! audrey stibbe
I wanted to thank you again for pulling my bag out of the luggage pile. I know now after having done the walk I wouldn’t have made it if you hadn’t done that. It was above and beyond the duty of a volunteer. I apologize for my blonde moment and plan to never do it again. The race itself was a wonderful experience. I met all sorts of interesting people on the trail as well as encouraging ones at the stops. You and your volunteers made the experience one I will never forget. Kim Lougheed
Many, many thanks to all the volunteers from all the Lions Clubs who helped make this year's event such a success. The organization and support for walkers just keeps getting better. Lorraine Gilbert
THANK YOU !!! to all the volunteers from both towns for putting on a great walk!! I was so very impressed with the hospitality that was offered, the organization that was presented, the support from the locals, the scenery that was on the walk and just the whole event. CONGRATULATIONS!!! This was my first time on the walk, and I can't thank you all enough for a great weekend!! Lorraine's house was a great place to stay in Gold River (her hospitality was great), the organization that was displayed in the middle of the night to shuffle everyone to the start line, the people that were the road monitors, all the wonderful people at the checkpoints, I just can't say enough about how wonderful everyone was!! THANK YOU again. I wish you all great success and I look forward to seeing you all again next year. Sue Jensen
Hello Great Walk, I just wanted to drop you a line and say Thank You for such a Great event. This was my third year doing the walk and I think this one was the best organized so far. Everyone involved that we had contact with, were so very friendly and helpful. Your two communities truly typify the spectacular beauty of the west coast of Vancouver Island. Obviously not enough can be said for all the volunteers who, without, I know the Great Walk would not happen. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You to all the Volunteers. And to the organizers, Thank You for what must truly be a stupendous amount of work that must go on all year. From my point of view, your Great event is overwhelming and long my it continue. As long as you hoist the Great Walk, I will be there. Thanks again for a Great experience, Randy Jones
Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed my first Great Walk! I was VERY impressed by the friendliness and helpfulness of all the coordinators and volunteers. If I could make any suggestion, it would be for more flexible transportation arrangements, although this would probably mean starting the walk in Tahsis. Thanks again, and job well done! Mike Levis #979
Dear Sirs and Ma'ams-for the web site communication That is a great big thank you to all those involved in the organization and running of the 2002 Great Walk; it was absolutely fabulous. It is the People, the Set-up, the Weather, the Watch and the Road that make it. It was an awesome experience which I will forever remember. It was a physical, emotional and spiritual challenge. We met wonderful people along the way both walking/running and volunteers who had organized or just helped out in the event. A lot went out of their way to encourage others. I think some of their faces will be forever in my mind. One personal supporter (Lil) for her husband encouraged my walkingmate, Kate and I on and helped us at the checkpoints. At first I thought she was actually an official volunteer, only to find out she was another angel in disguise, extending herself to many. Thanks Lil. It didn't matter who you were or where you were the challenge was individual-the competition was merely against yourself. This fact fed the atmosphere of support and comeraderie amongst all involved. Even the road became a friend as the hills turned corners to friendly patches of shade or flat which enticed you on. In those friendly patches two wonderful Hospice volunteers found me-even though I was not an official part of the Dream Team I felt I was. Thank you to Pat and Rick for your great encouragement. With the commitment and caring that you extended I am confident in saying Hospice is a wonderful organization. I have always loved trilliums but those white petals have oh so much more meaning to me today. Bless you and your vision. It was incredible as we took the first bus out of town at the 12 hour mark to see people still on the road persevering. I think I admire some of these most of all. For me time on the road is a greater factor in long suffering then the distance ever could be. I was able to finish at 1pm, there were some still on the road at 5pm and a good distance (up to 30km) from the finish. For them the length of sun exposure and sheer exhaustion was much greater. Doing it in 5-10 hours is a lesser challenge then doing it in 12-17 hours! I have heard stories of people picking up each others feet just to get them that much closer to the finish. Congratulations. My hat goes off to you; you guys are incredible. The challenge lives on. Now all I want to do is walk it again. Imagine my excitement to know the Great Walk will run in 2003. In heartfelt thanks, May God bless you all, Jane Konway
Congratulations on another well organized successful Great Walk. As a support driver, I want to give mega accolades to the First Aid team, particularly to the paramedics - who took such excellent care of one of my "supportees" who suffered from the heat. Thank you, thank you! All is well now. Merrion
Thanks you so much for a memorable weekend in your beautiful area. - Three of us decided back in the early spring that the walk from Gold River to Tahsis sounded like a really good idea One of the gals in our party was related to Robert Francis who wrote about the Great Walk a year or so ago - which was how we heard about it. - When we approached our various husbands we were met with bemused looks - and consequently we decided we had to do it. - And we did it! - The volunteers and organizers from all over that worked so hard to make things easy for us deserve a huge round of applause - everyone was so nice and helpful - from the store keeper in Gold River who gave my husband a paper cup with Vaseline from her own supply when everything had been bought up. Word was going around the campsite at the Peppercorn that Vaseline was the end all to keep your feet in shape - What did we know? - We just came over from the Mainland where hiking is a walk in the park compared to the Tahsis Road. - The checkpoint people were marvellous and so encouraging and helpful. - Lots of food, lots of water and Gatorade, lots of smiles - what a bunch! - We also had fabulous accommodations at the Seaside RV Park in Tahsis - what a beautiful spot - some day I want to go to Tahsis again and actually wear shoes after I arrive. We also would like to thank all the wonderful people from Tahsis that came out to cheer us on those last laps into town (did you have to put the finish line at the other end of town - that felt like about 4km) - Thanks a million! We are looking forward to seeing the results on the website and will be checking regularly to catch it. Cheers - Ninna Sherwood - Walker 756
Just a note to say congratulations on a very successful event, one that both my husband and I were happy to participate in...... like so many, we left with sore feet but great memories and glad we had entered. We were amazed how well organized the event was, so many people to get to the starting point in darkness and yet it started right on time. Special congratulations on two items in particular: Keeping the so called support vehicles to as few as you had - makes the event much more enjoyable and quite frankly, they are not needed as the support all along the way is great. Thanks for the soup offerings at the mid-way point.....with the salty crackers - great stuff! Thanks for the good humored volunteers all along the way, and your road monitors....meant so much to first timers like us. Jeannette Genton John Battye Nanaimo BC
Just a quick note from the Clearwater Contingent to thank you for a great weekend. It was a fantastic feeling to see "my girls" sprinting to the finish line in 11 hours and 24 minutes. Although I wasn't able to participate as a walker, I really enjoyed volunteering and meeting some of the great people of your community. The attention Kim received from the paramedics was first class and for that, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts.Our stay at Fern's B and B proved to all of us that strangers really are only friends we haven't met yet. I can't imagine how much work it is to put on such an event but please pass on our compliments to everybody- it was a job well done. Thanks again, Miki Gunn Kim Lougheed (663) Ann Burnett(23) gunners@mercuryspeed.com
Hi, I would like to thank you for a very well done event . All the volunteers worked very hard and were very friendly and supportive.This was the first time I participated in this event and even though it is a brutal walk, I had a lot of fun doing it. Thanks again for everybody's hard work. Costas Roussinos.
Hello I did the Great Walk for the first time this year(I drove support vehicle one year, not the same as walking!) I thoroughly enjoyed the experience in large part due the fantastic people who volunteer at this event. I don't know what to say other than an enormous THANK_YOU !!!!! The people at the checkpoints were always smiling as they pushed water, food and encouragement upon us; the cheering and potbanging as we approached the finish and the smiles and medals at the finish were extraordinary! We did not need the ministrations of the ambulance and rescue staff and did not take advantage of the massage but certainly appreciated their presence. The soup and chili were marvelous(as was the shower). Even our busdriver back to Gold River (at 6:30) slowed and turned off the a/c so the walkers still out there (and good for them to keep going!) didn't get too much dust. Top that with fantastic scenery and it made a wonderful day! Again thak you all so much for the fantastic effort, it made our day! Hope there's an opportunity to do it again. Lorna Craig (#94)
Hello Mike I just wanted to let you know what a fantastic event you and all of your volunteers put on. This was my first year and I was truly amazed at all the people that made this event possible. The weather and scenery were out of this world. I would also like to note that I did not hear one negative comment from all the walkers I talked too. That was terrific! I also loved the pot banging lady at the finish line. She made my day. Thank you again for your wonderful event. Yours Sincerely Sharleen Edwards
I did the 2002 ....great walk. It was difficult but I finished it.Yahoo!! But I did find there were too many support vehicles, it was so hot and dusty and all the vehicles driving back and forth was made it much worse. Motorhomes, trucks with campers should pay double. Also the food at every check point was the same, apples, oranges,granola bars, homemade cookies ( they could have a least made a few different kinds of cookies) At the finish line we were given a meal ticket , we said great finally real food only to be given a small bowl of watery soup!! I would gladly have payed a larger entry fee and had some decent food. Other then the miserable bus driver and the horrible bus trip back to Gold River it was great. Barb
Mike, to you and through you to the committee of volunteers, a sincere thank you for the spirit of the Great Walk that permeates every step of the ardous route. Each year I say, that is it, no more and yet ... every March I twitch and the images of seeing the river below descending from station 5 to station 6 start to interupt otherwise 'normal' sleep. So too do the images of the many other spots along the journey and most especially the 'pot bangers' and the sirens at the truly significant end of the individual accomplishments. The gang all look forward to next year. All the best to you and all those responsible for collecting the rag tag bunch of 'hoofers' that continue to ensure that both Gold River and Tahsis stay on the map. Les

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Last Updated on July 19,2002 by The Great Walk
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