Stateline, Nevada – During the first two weeks of June, participants in the 13th annual Lake Tahoe Bike Challenge traveled 11,215 miles on foot or on bicycle, burning an estimated 482,245 calories and preventing an estimated 12,105 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions and $2,493 in gasoline purchases.
Organized by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition, the basin-wide Bike Challenge is a friendly competition to see what individuals and teams can rack up the most trips and miles by biking, walking, or taking transit instead of driving cars.
“The Bike Challenge is a great way to start summer at Tahoe and we would like to thank the many sponsors and people who participated in this year’s event,” said Rich Looney, travel management coordinator for TRPA. “Biking, walking, and taking transit are fun and healthy ways to travel that help improve the environment and reduce traffic congestion.”
“Thank you to everyone who rode or walked to work, school, and play during this year’s Tahoe Bike Challenge for doing your part to protect and restore Lake Tahoe by reducing car trips,” said Gavin Feiger, president of the Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition. “We hope this helps encourage people to ride and walk through the rest of the year.”
Competition winners who logged the most trips and miles will receive Heavenly Mountain Resort lift tickets, free bike tune-ups from Sports LTD, Olympic Bike Shop, and Gravity Shop, as well as signed bicycle art prints from painter John D. Wibberley and other bicycling accessories. The top Bike Challenge teams will also be recognized at the July 25 meeting of the TRPA Governing Board.
Vincent Benoit, of South Lake Tahoe, won the individual challenge for both trips and miles, reporting 49 trips and 376 miles. South Tahoe Refuse and Recycling won the team challenge for most trips with 259 trips, and El Dorado County Department of Transportation and El Dorado County Library won the team challenge for most trips per employee, with 32 trips per employee.
Individual winners (Most Miles)
First – Vincent Benoit, 376 miles
Second – Kevin Willitts, 375.2 miles
Third – Bob Buckholz, 350.06 miles
Individual winners (Most Trips)
First – Vincent Benoit, 49 trips
Second – Carlie Teague, 38 trips
Third – April Grothe, 32 trips
Team challenge winners (Most Trips)
First – South Tahoe Refuse and Recycling, 259 trips
Second – Lake Tahoe Community College, 252 trips
Third – League to Save Lake Tahoe, 250 trips
Team challenge winners (Most Trips Per Employee)
First – El Dorado County Department of Transportation/Library, 32.33 trips per employee
Second – Tahoe Telecommuters, 17.57 trips per employee
Third – Lake Tahoe Community College, 14.82 trips per employee
Lake Tahoe schools also participated in the Bike Challenge, with 813 students participating in Bike to School Week. All participating students received safety bike bells, bike lights, reflective slap bands, and instruction on how to maintain and safely ride their bicycles.
Bijou Community School – 351 students
South Tahoe Middle School – 169 students
Lake Tahoe Environmental Magnet School – 112 students
North Tahoe Middle School – 67 students
Sierra House Elementary School – 60 students
Tahoe Valley Elementary School – 54 students
Partners in the Lake Tahoe Bike Challenge hope to see people continue to walk, bike, and take transit this summer. TRPA and its partners recently launched a new travel options website, www.LinkingTahoe.com, that provides comprehensive information about ways to get to, from, and around the Tahoe Basin without driving a car.
The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency leads the cooperative effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, while improving local communities, and people’s interactions with our irreplaceable environment. For additional information, contact Tom Lotshaw, public information officer, at (775) 589-5278.