"The mission today is to connect with all Vermonters living in a wheel chair," said Chris Tagatac of Wheel Chair Vt. "So, we decided to give ourselves a challenge."
That challenge: a two-day hand-pedal along ALL of Route 7, from Highgate Springs to Pownal.
The 168-mile journey would take an avid traditional cyclist about 10 hours, but will likely take these athletes nearly three times longer.
Navigating the heavy traffic poses a major challenge, as does the physical effort needed to overcome Vermont's terrain.
"The challenge is certainly going be the hills down south, some of the hills from Manchester to Bennington, those are some pretty steep riding," said Tagatac.
Hand cyclist Michael Audette said Saturday, "The hills are the hardest part of this, it's great going down a hill, but it's hard getting up that hill."
But the challenges on the pavement pale in comparison to other's Michael Audette faced. He lost 20 percent of his brain while serving in Desert Storm when his helicopter crashed.
"I have constant vertigo and dizzy spells, 20-30 spells a day," said Audette. "It feels like that butterfly effect, like when you get on a roller coaster. Starts in my stomach and rolls up into my head."
The veteran doesn't let Traumatic Brain Injury stop him from competing in every adaptive sport he can and sharing that passion with his fellow wounded warriors. He is the director of the nonprofit organization Allied Forces Foundation New England Region.
He says he's on his bike every day it isn't snowing.
"It gives you that sense of freedom," Audette explains. "Getting out on a day like today, it's just incredible."
But outings like these aren't just about getting out or working out. Organizers say by connecting with each other, they can also share the latest news within their community.
"Whether you're spinal cord injured, traumatic brain injury, M.S., or something else that keeps you in a wheelchair, there's a lot of really interesting research happening right now," said Tagatac.
The ride began early Saturday with relay stops along the way and is expected to roll-on well into Sunday.
Organizers hope their journey helps other paralyzed individuals along theirs.
Thursday, December 5 2013 8:12 AM EST2013-12-05 13:12:30 GMT
The prospective new owners of the Burlington Town Center mall have big plans for its future. According to a memo from the Devonwood Investment group, the New York City company wants to add a new anchorMore >>
The prospective new owners of the Burlington Town Center mall have big plans for its future.More >>
Thursday, December 5 2013 1:13 AM EST2013-12-05 06:13:43 GMT
One Georgia man is going all-out to light up his home for Christmas this year. For J.R. Adams, decorating his home elaborately with lights, music, and Santa Claus on a motorcycle is a childhood dream come true. "IMore >>
One Georgia man is going all-out to light up his home for Christmas this year.More >>
Thursday, December 5 2013 1:13 AM EST2013-12-05 06:13:06 GMT
Vermont State Police need your help to find a hit and run driver. They say Wednesday afternoon an older model red Subaru wagon driving north on Route 14 in Williamstown crossed into oncoming traffic, enteredMore >>
Vermont State Police need your help to find a hit and run driver.More >>
Thursday, December 5 2013 1:12 AM EST2013-12-05 06:12:17 GMT
Santa is looking for a few helpers to brighten the holidays for senior citizens across our region. Home Instead Senior Care is collecting gifts as part of its "Be a Santa to a Senior Program." The group'sMore >>
Santa is looking for a few helpers to brighten the holidays for senior citizens across our region.More >>
Thursday, December 5 2013 1:11 AM EST2013-12-05 06:11:32 GMT
The battle over a new methadone clinic in South Burlington continues. Wednesday night the South Burlington School board voted to pursue an appeal with the state supreme court to keep the clinic away fromMore >>
The battle over a new methadone clinic in South Burlington continues.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 8:05 PM EST2013-12-05 01:05:10 GMT
Burlington's deputy police chief is off the hook on drunk driving charges after reaching a plea deal with prosecutors Wednesday.More >>
Burlington's deputy police chief took a plea deal Wednesday, and then announced his retirement. The plea gets Andi Higbee off the hook for drunk driving, but the resolution of the case also ends his 24-year career with the BPD.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 9:45 AM EST2013-12-04 14:45:58 GMT
Police are looking for two Massachusetts men in connection with an assault and robbery in Burlington's South End. It happened Tuesday afternoon on Marble Ave. Investigators say Bryan Frazier, 30, and Rashad Sabree,More >>
Police are looking for two Massachusetts men in connection with an assault and robbery in Burlington's South End.More >>
Wednesday, December 4 2013 9:31 AM EST2013-12-04 14:31:50 GMT
An accused murderer has fired his investigator. Dennis Tribble was convicted of murder twice. The 63-year-old Vermont man was convicted of shooting and killing Michael Borello in 2000. But the VermontMore >>
An accused murderer has fired his investigator.More >>