Grand Canadian Challenge

I have a weakness for alcohol – it renders me susceptible to over-zealous persuasions. Which is how, when I met up with my friend Corrie, I ended up pledging my participation to a list of challenges she’s dared me to accomplish. Needless to say, I’ve diligently scrutinised this ‘list’ and scheming to put a tick next to every item – including the ones where I’ll be playing benefactor to Corrie’s being the recipient of Canadian goodies.

And I’m hoping these won’t be the only challenges I am to be tasked with completing: I hereby welcome you all to submit your shares of Canada to-do’s throughout the Grand Canadian Hitchhike and I’ll endeavour to, well, do as I’m told. Please submit your dares to or by jotting it down in the comment box below.

So without further ado, the Grand Canadian Challenge.

Grand Canadian Hitchhike Challenge


  1. If I can’t complete an objective, find something of equal value to replace it;
  2. I can use [Corrie] as an excuse to complete these (ie “can I have your autograph for my friend?”);
  3. Photographic and/or anecdotal evidence required for each objective completed; bonus points for each thing you try in which you manage to blag yourself free stuff by using your blog.


  • Photograph yourself with the Canadian flag next to a sign in each of the main towns listed (can be a miniature);
  • Photograph of yourself with a Mountie;
  • Bring Corrie some Canadian Maple Syrup;
  • Photograph of your face every day of the challenge, a la Noah;
  • Get an autograph from every person who gives you a lift. Ask for a photo and record one interesting fact about them;
  • Climb a mountain;
  • Catch and eat your own fish;
  • Try out the local brew in every place you visit;
  • Teach as many people as you can about the legend of St George and the Dragon;
  • Find out Canadian stereotypes. Ask as many Canadians as you can if they conform to these stereotypes;
  • Find out as many local myths and legends as you can – at least ten; record them all;
  • Try out three adventure sports – preferred would be white-water rafting, ice-skating (with hockey) and a hot-air balloon ride;
  • Press a wild-flower and bring it back;
  • Find out about traditional Canadian crafts; bonus points: try out a traditional Canadian craft and make a souvenir to bring back;
  • Try each of the following: Ginger beef, Canadian Baked Beans, Jiggs Dinner, Pierogis, Bumbleberry Pie, Butter Tarts, Nabob Coffee, Poutin, Donair, Chinese Smorgasbord, Lumberjack’s Breakfast and Shish Taouk.


  • Go star-gazing at the Gordon MacMillan Southam Observatory;
  • Go to the movies at the Paramount Theatre;
  • Call up the BC Film Commission Line (604-660-3569), find out what films are being filmed in Vancouver, go and look around for a bit; bonus points: get an autograph from a famous person.


  • Do a Self Guided Brew Tour; bonus points: blag yourself a free drink in each of the pubs using the blog;
  • Go fossil-hunting in the Painted Bluffs Provincial Park; bonus points: bring a fossil back for Corrie.


  • Catch an event at the Calgary Stampede;
  • Go to a hockey game; bonus points: try out hockey;
  • Go to a Secret Street Drag Race.

Medicine Hat:

  • Go to a curling game; bonus points: Try out curling;
  • Go to the WYNZ Niteclub on a theme night.


  • Go to the Saskatchewan Science Centre.



  • Find some buskers; get them to perform something for The Travelling Editor – record it and post it on your website; bonus points: get them to improvise a song about you.
  • Visit the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden.

Thunder Bay:

  • Go for a tour of the Agate Mine; bonus points: bring back a souvenir.


  • Go to a Bank Street pub.
  • Go on a Ghost Walk; bonus points: do it while drunk.