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New Mexico Resident Embarks on 4200-mile Cross Country Bike Odyssey to Benefit Environmental Group

July 14, 2003
WildEarth Guardians
In This Release
Climate + Energy, Public Lands, Rivers, Wildlife  
Santa Fe, NM – Long-time New Mexico resident, Darrel Bruns, will set out this Friday on a bicycle tour from Oregon to Virginia to raise awareness of and donations for Santa Fe-based WildEarth Guardians, an environmental watchdog group dedicated to protecting and restoring the Southwest’s wildlife and wild habitat for future generations to enjoy.

The 42-day trip will follow a network of backcountry roads and will cover almost 4200 miles – over twice the distance of the Tour de France, the venerated cycling race now underway and featuring Lance Armstrong’s historic quest for a fifth straight victory.

Inspired by Armstrong and other Americans competing in France, Mr. Bruns will average 100 miles per day to highlight WildEarth Guardians’ efforts to reverse the legacy of environmentally destructive practices on southwestern public lands, such as rampant oil and gas development, unfettered logging, and depletion of the river ecosystems that are so essential to the region’s fish and wildlife.

“For years, I have explored the vast wild areas of New Mexico on my mountain bike,” said Mr. Bruns, 46. “Doing this trip to support WildEarth Guardians’ visionary work combines my passion for cycling with my love for the Southwest’s unrivaled natural treasures. I want future generations to have the chance to enjoy the Southwest’s wild heritage.”

Attracted to WildEarth Guardians after learning of their campaign to safeguard the Rio Grande ecosystem and create a network of wildlife preserves, Mr. Bruns will promote the organization’s environmental work, in part, by carrying a banner and flag attached to a trailer that will carry his gear.

“Darrel’s bike ride is an epic testimony to the Southwest’s wild character,” said Dustin Garrick, Development Coordinator for WildEarth Guardians. “This cross country journey will focus the spotlight on the enormous threats confronting this arid – yet biologically vibrant – region of America.”

WildEarth Guardians’ will feature Mr. Bruns trip on their website (www.fguardians.org) to track his progress and allow for online pledges to support his quest. A two and half-year employee of Comcast Cable, Mr. Bruns is equipped with a pocket computer to relay email updates that will post to the website. His goal is to raise $4,200 – a dollar per mile – to benefit WildEarth Guardians’ conservation campaigns throughout the Southwest.