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If you're driving on the Dempster Highway, watch out for a cyclist and his support crew.

Don Patterson is riding from Inuvik, N.W.T., to Point Pelee, Ont., the southernmost point of the country — a distance of 7,000 kilometres — in order to raise money for aboriginal fitness programs across Canada.

"I came up with this idea because I wanted to increase awareness for the importance of physical activity for our aboriginal youth," Patterson told our CBC reporter in Inuvik. "This way I can pass through many aboriginal communities starting in Inuvik where you have both first nations and Inuvialuit population."

Patterson, 61, has raised $5,000 so far.

Spirit Ride 2016 map
The route goes from the northernmost to the southernmost point in Canada. (

Some of that money will be used for a youth fitness position in the N.W.T.'s Beaufort Delta region, based in Inuvik.

He's also working with Olympic skier Sharon Firth to get ski equipment donated to Fort McPherson and Inuvik schools.

Donations are being accepted on his website.

Read more here

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