More Connected, Less Distracted

Dear PRO8000 Supporters,

As I'm writing you, the rain continues to sputter from an overcast Yukon sky, a few drops of which create tear drop tracks down the window pane next to where I am seated.

We've taken refuge from the weather in the sleepy town of Meziadin Junction at a local lodge where truckers and retired couples stop for a warm drink before returning to the road or finishing a vacation in the dwindling days of the summer season. The steam from my mug of coffee rises in protest to the cold and dreary conditions beyond the cafe walls. Autumn is within reach.

In the past month, you've no doubt followed along as our journey has taken us from the remote wilderness of Prudhoe Bay to the head of the Cassier Highway. You've celebrated with us as we completed our first thousand miles and first century cycling day. You've sent us care packages and love letters that make the time away from home less lonely. You've hosted us, fed us, and welcomed us into your homes with kindness and generosity as if we were family. You've given us advice about road conditions and bought us groceries. You've honked, waved, and shouted encouragement from your passing car. You've given us thumbs up and peace signs from the passenger seat that remind us that roads can be shared safely. You've read our blog, reposted our statuses, tracked our GPS, and admired our photos.

Despite the time and distance away from our friends and family, we feel closer to our community than ever before. And that connection is made possible because of cell phone use.

Our goal at PRO8000 is simple: To be more connected. Less distracted.

The majority of our online interactions do and will continue to take place via phones. Phones have fueled our trip and allowed you to follow along in ways that would otherwise be impossible. However, as the Internet becomes more ubiquitous and more accessible via phones, cell phone companies have a moral obligation to promote safe use of the essential services they offer us. That is, with expanding coverage comes expanding responsibility.

That's why we're excited to announce our partnership with Republic Wireless.

Cell phone companies are in a unique position since their customers may be tempted to engage in distracted driving. They also can help discourage their customers from succumbing to that temptation. Republic Wireless's commitment to our ride demonstrates their commitment. We think it's brave for a cell phone company to embrace the humanity behind connectedness and to take steps toward reducing its potential dangers. We also think it's pretty cool for them to sponsor four good-hearted cyclists.

Thank you, Republic Wireless. We'll see you at our safe finish in Key West.