Our site works best with JavaScript enabled.

News - update on all things Alpkit

A Summer French Divide

By Col
26, Jul, 2016

With plans for Tour Divide on hold, this summer the Pips have decided they'll be mainly on a 2200km French Divide

Young Tom and his dad Rich had grand visions for a big trip this summer holidays, but you know how it is, some things don't always go to plan. However, they had been putting in some serious miles on their individual bikes and on the tandem, so a new plan was needed...

"We had a plan for this summer and that, as many of you know, involved heading over to Banff in Canada to ride the 2745 mile Tour Divide route. Things haven't panned out exactly how we'd hoped timewise this summer because of other commitments, so sadly we've had to postpone that particular trip until next year.

Not that we do any specific training, but we are both pretty fit as we've been riding our bikes lots this year. So with a maximum of 4 weeks available we were looking for another challenge. Bikepacking is a big thing at the moment. Riders who have done other events, have been inspired to create their own, and one such route is the French Divide.

2200 kms with a suggested maximum completion time of 15 days would make a good starting point for our big trip . The route starts at Bray-Dunes (near Dunkerque) then heads over into Belgium for some Spring Classic cobbles. Speaking of cobbles, a little further south there are some of the Paris-Roubaix cobbles including the famous Trouée d'Arenberg. Big hills, they have some of those in the Massif Centrale, then towards the end of the route we head into the Pyrennees. 70% of the route is off road, so the Tandem will be in its element.

So that's 2 weeks accounted for. How do we get back home from there? Yes, you've guessed we'll ride back. A somewhat easier ride up the Atlantic coast. The 1200km Vélodyssée. It looks like it's a flat route, and of course the wind will be at our backs the whole way back.

We are doing a talk in Birmingham on the 1st of August, so we'll leave there on the tandem on the 2nd, aiming to start riding in France on the 4th.

We'll let you know how we get on when we're back. If you're going to the Alpkit Big Shakeout we'll be talking about our trip there."

We'll be looking forward to some Daring Deeds from this adventure. But if you want to find out about Tom you can in our Mountain Journal Short. If you want to follow them while they are away then keep an eye on thier spot tracker  and they will also be over on Twitter  or Instagram 

  • Google+

1 Comment

Share your thoughts about this article.


Berten
The future of BikePacking has been guaranteed :)

Great to read this !! I hope I run into them and have a chat or maybe even a coffee. Go Go Go little big guy !!!

General News

Nat Spring: 40 Day Wellbeing Challenge
Nat Spring's journey to recovery
In News
Pedalling the Parks
1600-mile cycle ride across the UK’s National Parks
In News
Alpkit Keswick Official Opening
Yippee! It's officially official... We're open!
In News
Ireland To Asia: A Year On My Bike
Tales from Sean Hoban's journey to Asia
In News
Alpkit Adventure Weekender
Join us in store for an adventure filled weekend
In News

Elsewhere on Alpkit

Unexpected turns and hidden talents
Finding new paths when life takes an unexpected turn
In Daring Deeds
A Hill In Holland
Everesting.. In the Netherlands of all places
In Daring Deeds
The Mongol 100 Fat Bike Trip
100 miles across Lake Khövsgöl in Mongolia
In Daring Deeds
Everesting
Rich Seipp talks Everesting
In Daring Deeds
Lap of England
Customer Story
In Daring Deeds
The Squalline Story
Developing our new run/ride showerproof shell
In Develop
Gripping Developments In Gloves
A whole new glove range: the inside story
In Develop
New UK Made Bikepacking Bag Range
UK-made bike luggage shifts up a cog
In Develop
Sonder Evol: Q&A with Bike Guru Neil
Sonder's new 140mm trail bike
In Develop
The low-down on Polygiene™
Wear more, wash less: you can't get simpler than that!
In Develop
Surviving 24hr bike races - Strathpuffer
Surviving 24 hours on a bike in northern Scotland
In Spotlight
Layering up for Cycling
Our new Rhythm range, and how to layer for a ride
In Spotlight
Supporting the Silk Road Race
Watching dots on the Silk Road
In Spotlight
A Lake District Guide to Hike-A-Biking
How and why to hike-a-bike
In Spotlight
Wild Camping Tips and Kit List
The guide to getting it right when camping out
In Spotlight