The Sun Trip 2020 will finally happen in France!

The Sun Trip France will take place this summer 2020, from July 14 to August 9. The start will be in Lyon, with an arrival in Albertville. Thank you to the organizing team for their energy and responsiveness!

The route represents a 3000 km loop, divided into 7 stages. Some stages will be long, up to 850 km, other stages will allow participants to ride in groups (notably in Brittany, in Tourmalet and in the Alps). The route will also offer optional crossing points.

Learn more and / or register: Sun Trip France

Sun Trip 2020 France-China will not happen !

Today is June 1 that we were to set off for China!
For months, all of us, solar cyclists registered for the 2020 edition of the Sun Trip, have imagined ourselves en route to Guangzhou (Canton) in China. We dreamed of the countries we were going to cross. For some Turkey, Uzbekistan, for others Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan and for all, China. We imagined discoveries, meetings, happiness and perhaps some misfortunes …

The images of the 2018 edition had largely contributed to fuel our imagination:

But the Sun Trip 2020 will not take place as we had dreamed!
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic!

Despite everything, the Sun Trip 2020 will take place in another form! Thanks to the energy and creativity of the organizing team! It will be Franco-French, over a period of one month, with a course of 3000 km.

Crossing a Chinese desert, on foot and in solar mode!

I discover this amazing video made by Olivier Coste. He designed a solar powered machine to carry his equipment in a desert environment: “Solar Explorer”. In 2018, he crossed the Badain Jaran Desert in China. His vehicle allowed him to tackle the highest dunes in the world loaded with more than 150 kilos of equipment, water and food. Without such a carrying system, these arid areas would be inaccessible to a single individual. Congratulations to Olivier for this innovation!

Sun Trip 2020 preparation seminar

Preparation for the Sun Trip 2020 was organized this weekend in Lyon. It brought together 30 participants from the fifty or so registered participants and took place in an atmosphere that was studious, fascinating and friendly.
To effectively prepare for this solar bike rally, many themes were addressed:
– administrative aspects, border formalities and visas,
– possible routes and variants,
– the cultural differences of the countries crossed,
– the operation of solar bikes, the technical regulations,
– monitoring of meteorology and its impact on navigation,
– communication: video, social networks etc …

This weekend also allowed everyone to meet the other participants. There were many informal exchanges, between conferences and workshops, around meals or over a beer, at all hours of the day and night!
It was an opportunity for rich meetings between experienced suntripers and newcomers, between French and English speakers, between technicians and travelers … The enthusiasm and the joy of sharing were visible on the faces.

Saturday evening, we celebrated the Chinese New Year in the presence of the Chinese Consul in Lyon and the 3 Chinese SunTrip managers. On Sunday, Luc Giros presented his tour of Europe: more than 18,000 km traveled on the solar bike used by Mickaël Joguet during the Sun Trip 2018.

We would like to thank Florian Bailly for organizing this fruitful moment, as well as all the members of the organization who contributed to the smooth running of the event: Béatrice and Yannick, Christophe Bayard (Vécolo), Benoit Ganivet, Annick-Marie who brilliantly provided case-simultaneous translation for non-French speaking participants.

A solar bike tour in the Pyrenees on France3 TV

In the show “Faut pas rêver”, Carolina De Salvo makes us discover the landscapes of Cerdanya and its solar installations before continuing a great crossing of the Pyrenees to Aragon in Spain.
Carolina’s journey begins on an old train to the isolated Estavar station. She joined Bernard Cauquil, inventor of a tandem that runs on solar energy. At the handlebars of the Twin Dragon Fly, Carolina continues her journey thanks to the sun, a wealth of this region where it shines more than 320 days a year! In Mont-Louis, she meets Denis who demonstrates the first solar oven in the world.

[Extract from the program dedicated to the solar bike]

Carolina continues her journey marked by unforgettable encounters, placed under the sign of the unconditional love of those who live in the heart of the Pyrenees!
[Link to the full show in replay ” Faut Pas Rêver: for love of the Pyrenees “ broadcast on Wednesday January 15 on France 3]

The Sun Trip 2020 in L’Équipe.fr magazine

Today, a very nice article on the Sun Trip was published by L'Équipe magazine. Find the full article online at: https://www.lequipe.fr.

Here are some extracts below:
“In June, Sun Trip competitors will ride from Lyon to Canton in China on electro-solar assisted bikes. On the program: 12,000 km and fifteen countries crossed.

(©)

Browsing the Internet without looking at the compass too much, Jean-Marc Dubouloz, amateur cyclist, comes across a film relating the 2018 edition of the "Sun Trip". The images showed strange cyclists progressing on alpine slopes, over the plains of central Europe, or under the overwhelming sky of the Kazakh steppe. Pedaling lying under cover under their solar panels, or towing them on a trailer attached to their traditional bike, the Sun Trip competitors joined Lyon … Canton, 12,000 kilometers further!
Love at first sight from Jean-Marc Dubouloz: “I was amazed,” says this audiovisual entrepreneur. I immediately knew I wanted to do this. ”

(©)

Launched in 2013 by Florian Bailly, this extraordinary event aims to be a sort of “Terrestrial Vendée Globe”. […] The rule is simple: reach the final destination independently on “electro-solar assistance” bicycles (traditional or recumbent, cargo bikes, etc.). Any recharging on sector being strictly prohibited, the competitors will advance all the more quickly as the sky will be blue. Conversely, rainy and dull days require more muscular effort, promising both fatigue and shorter distances. […]

"What attracted me was this unique blend of human adventure and technology," says Dubouloz. The fiftieth is also passionate about the issue of soft mobility: […]the energy required for each participant to join Canton is for 1/3 of muscular origin and for 2/3 photovoltaic. […] On such a long adventure, you must reduce the risk of damage, and above all plan to repair by yourself. […]

The time limit for joining Canton is set at three and a half months. Our amateur cyclist is aiming for less than 60 days. June 1 will begin for him "the adventure of a lifetime".

Author: Olivier Haralambon
Posted January 13, 2020 on
https://www.lequipe.fr.

 

The Suntriper Christophe Dugué interviewed by France 3 TV

Christophe Dugué participated in the Sun Trip Tour in 2017, and also in 2019 with his wife Stephanie. His professional world has allowed him to build himself powerful, rigid and lightweight solar panels. Indeed Christophe works at Photowatt, a French manufacturer of panels.
In front of the cameras of France 3, he talks to us about his motivations and his approach, and Stéphanie explains to us how much his solar bike helped her in the ascent of the big alpine passes.

Pour la planète : Christophe Dugué à vélo solaire

Parcourir les Alpes ou pourquoi pas rouler jusqu'à l'autre bout du monde en toute autonomie dans des conditions plus écologiques qu'en voiture ou en camping car, c'est l'avantage du vélo électrique solaire. Christophe Dugué s'est lancé en participant au Sun Trip, une course à vélo solaire unique au monde. #pourlaplanète The Sun Trip

Publiée par France 3 Régions sur Mercredi 20 novembre 2019

The Sun Trip Tour 2019 in the 200′ magazine!

The magazine 200 makes cycling a daily adventure, it feels a love of cycling in all its forms, it grants letters of nobility to the little queen, whether the bike in town, wilderness, mountain , on all the roads of France, Europe and elsewhere. The magazine 200 does not segregate between cyclo-sportsmen, competitors, cyclotourists, travelers, adventurers …
That's why he devoted an 8-page article to the participants of the Sun Trip, and recounts their adventures on the human level as well as technical and sporting.

A number available in kiosks until the end of January 2020

The photo album of July 12th, from Divonne-les-Bains to Chamonix

Find the images of the adventures of the 7th day of the Sun trip Tour 2019: the quiet journey with Ralf, Divonne-les-Bains to Sallanches where Jean joined us, and after Sallanches, the course of the day which switches after an unfortunate passage at a bike shop, the necessary break at a village party, and the late arrival in Chamonix due to technical problems.

Sun Trip Tour: (re) live on July 7 in pictures!

Find all the atmosphere of the 2nd day of the Sun trip Tour 2019 in the photo album of July 7th: From Saint-Flour to Cheylade, the landscapes of Cantal, swimming, camp, meal, dusk on the lake waterfalls… Pictures + short videos:

Sun Trip Tour: the atmosphere of July 6th in photo!

Find all the atmosphere of the first day of the Sun trip Tour 2019 in the photo album of July 6th: the presentation of the bikes on the place of the Town Hall of Puy-en-Velay, the first kilometers through the landscapes of the Haute-Loire, the valley of Allier until Saint-Flour.

Pictures + short videos:

Sun Trip Tour: review of distances and height differences

This Sun Trip Tour 2019 was slightly sportier than the 2017 edition, a little more kilometers and more altitude. But everyone had the freedom to choose the easiest or most difficult routes. And the suntripers who dreamed of winning the challenge of the best climber had to blow up their counters, especially for the elevations more than for the distances! For me, the routes were constrained by the different repairs to be done more by the sporting challenges. But I still managed to pass passes deemed difficult, such as the Col de Finestre and Col d'Agnel, with beautiful landscapes.

Date juilletDépartArrivéeDuréeDistanceDénivelé+Trace GPS
3DijonL'Arbresle06:38201 km1410 m
6Le-Puy-enVelaySaint-Flour05:47102 km1867 m
7Saint-FlourCheylade03:5061 km1137 m
8CheyladeSaint-Ours05:56116 km1938 m
9Saint-OursL'Arbresle07:26188 km1699 m
10L'ArbresleVillars-les-Dombes02:3154 km392 m
11Villars-les-DombesDivonne-les-Bains05:52134 km1666 m
12Divonne-les-BainsChamonix07:14133 km1809 m
13ChamonixBourg-St-Maurice06:45126 km3032 m
14Bourg-St-MauriceLanslebourg04:1480 km2280 m
16LanslebourgPinerolo05:48113 km2658 m
17PineroloMolines-en-Queyras07:58124 km2664 m
18Molines-en-QueyrasAspres-sur-Buëch05:06136 km2311 m
19Aspres-sur-BuëchCrest02:59102 km719 m
20CrestValence01:1436 km216 m
TOTAL1 781 km26 170 m

To take the train with a solar bike !

The after Sun Trip Tour: from Valence to Dijon via Châlon-sur-Saône

On July 20th, I leave Valence in TER to join Châlon-sur-Saône. I use the idea that guided the design of my solar vehicle: to take the train. Principles: – a standard bike is always accepted in the TER and in some TGV, – the trailer is acceptable with the panel vertically, it does not take more space than a bike. For the moment, I have taken the train a dozen times in France and Switzerland, I have never been opposed to refusal.

If necessary, we can reduce the length by sliding the 3rd panel on the 2nd, in less than 10 minutes.

In some trains (TGV and Lyria), we can create the equivalent of a cover with trash bags and big scotch (and for the bike, disassembly of the wheels, and when I have the time, pedals and handlebars before putting it in a bag).

July 21, I finish cycling back to Dijon, at 34 km/h average speed.