They come from far and wide to walk, run or ride bikes along a closed stretch of “top secret” beach for more than eight miles. The competitors ride race bikes, cruisers and tandem bikes. They even push strollers and wheelchairs.
It’s all in the name of fundraising, and it’s hosted by as one of the most unique events on San Diego’s annual event calendar.
The Low Tide Ride & Stride takes place Sunday (Father’s Day), June 19, at 8 a.m. The 8.2-mile race takes racers past the secretive U.S. Navy operations along the Silver Strand that are normally not open to foot (or bike) traffic. This includes the secured SEAL Team training area along the way. In fact, this is the only time this restricted stretch of beach is open to the public.
Shuttles carry bikes and participants to Imperial Beach for the start. At the finish, skilled bicycle mechanics from are waiting to hose off the bikes and re-lubricate them to prevent damage from salt and sand.
The Low Tide Ride & Stride is held on the lowest tide of the year and is sponsored annually by Coronado Rotary as a fundraiser. This year’s event benefits wounded warriors through the C5 rehabilitation facility at Naval Medical Center San Diego and the Warrior Foundation.
The C5 Comprehensive Combat & Complex Casualty Care manages severely injured or ill patients from medical examination through inpatient care, through outpatient rehabilitation, and eventually overseeing a return to active duty or transition from the military. This includes trauma, wound and primary care, combat stress and brain injury care, patient and family support, administrative support and amputee care and rehabilitation.
The Warrior Foundation provides travel and accommodations for seriously injured soldiers who are moved to San Diego. They supply handheld computers to veterans who have short-term memory loss as a result of exposure to IED blasts. They also offer physical therapy for soldiers with long-term rehabilitation needs.
The Warrior Foundation also lends assistance to retired warriors transitioning back to civilian life by helping them find housing, providing job counseling and networking with veteran support groups.
The entry fee is $35 for adults and $15 for children 18 and under, and it’s usually a family day at the beach for most racers.
Last year’s Low Tide Ride & Stride raised more than $36,000. The roughly 250-member Coronado Rotary donates $100,000 annually to local, regional and international causes. They have been in service since 1926.
Photo opportunities abound at the Low Tide Ride & Stride. Photographers can capture the start in Imperial Beach, the finish at Coronado’s , or various points along the route that include the scenic beaches in front of the Hotel del Coronado and Coronado Shores.
Submitted by Joe Ditler of Part-Time PR.