Sikad Las Vegas: Driven by Purpose

Written by Arnel Salazar

The Nevada Bicycle Club hosted the second-annual Sikad Las Vegas on Octoer 13th, 2018. This charity fun ride raised awareness and funds to support Gawad Kalinga’s community building efforts to address homelessness in the Philippines. 

Over 120 cyclists rode their bicycles through the challenging River Mountain Loop Trail, a 35 mile paved trail that surrounds the River Mountains connecting Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Boulder City, and Henderson.

The ride started at 8:00 AM and finished around 3:00 PM in the parking lot of the Railroad Pass Casino and Hotel in Henderson. The morning of the event started chilly with a steady breeze as the cyclists started to arrive as early as 6:30 AM and were warmly greeted by the smiles of the volunteers and hot coffee, bagels and pastries at the Casino’s staging area. Then the sun crept up and started to warm the morning, just in time for the start.

The riders started to roll out in two groups. The first group embarked on the 35 mile loop course and rolled out at 8:00 AM . While the second group started their 9 mile course towards the big bicycle statue in Bootleg Canyon. 

Although the River Mountain Loop Trail is intended for riders of all experience levels, the counter clockwise route welcomed a daunting challenge – the Three Sisters. After taking on this  challenge, the riders were rewarded with beautiful desert scenery and a wonderful view of the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. 

There were three well stocked support SAG stations across the route cheerfully attended by very friendly and hospitable volunteers, all willing to help keep the riders nourished and hydrated. There were several rolling SAG vehicles ready to pick up cyclists who got punctured tires or cyclists who couldn’t finish riding the whole loop. There were manned checkpoints that were scattered all around the loop as well as several NBC SAG members on bicycles patrolling the route. 

The cyclists who finished the course were welcomed back with a lot of fanfare by cheering volunteers, families and friends. The faces of the cyclists were beaming with pride, smiling as they crossed the finish line, a sense of accomplishment marked on their faces. 

The cyclists, after they basked in their accomplishment headed inside the historic RailRoad Pass Casino & Hotel where they re-fueled thanks to a delicious and well-needed buffet.

With a great deal of respect to NBC leadership, Sikad Chairman Jun Tan, Co-Chairman Alexander Ramos, and the generosity of the sub-committees, NBC had a successful Sikad 2018 and were able to raise over $30,000 thanks to the 120+ registered cyclists and numerous sponsors. The funds raised will go directly to charity organization Gawad Kalinga to support its home building efforts in the Philippines.