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29 March 2021

See something new

Do you live for new adventures on the weekend? Do you have an ever-expanding list of trails you want to ride and sights you want to see? Oli & Anais never waste a weekend, and one of their all-time favorites was a trip around a famous French lake.

Surrounded by towering mountains, clear blue skies and rolling Alpine meadows, Lake Annecy is a sight you will never forget: the third largest lake in France and one of the ¬-cleanest, purest bodies of water in the world. It demands to be cycled around. But can you do it in a day?

That’s what Oli and Anais set out to do.

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The adventure-loving couple from Samoëns in the French Alps spend their weekends searching for new, ever-more-unforgettable outdoor adventures. Their aim is simple: see things they’ve never seen before, get to places few people can reach, push their own limits to discover what they are capable of and, most importantly, have fun together.

One challenge, however, remained unticked on their list: cycle around Lake Annecy in a day. It’s a substantial undertaking featuring more than 75km of roads and trails in total. Their route also included a number of climbs that would test even the most experienced cyclists.

“We climbed all the way up to the Semnoz mountain via the Leschaux pass for the sunset,” says Oli. “This made the route a lot tougher, as it was a huge 1200m climb to reach the top.” It was a tough ascent, but once they were above the tree line they were rewarded with 360-degree views over the lake, of Mont Blanc and the surroundings of Annecy. “It is without doubt one of the most beautiful French lake tours you can do.”

SHIMANO’s EP8 was the perfect e-bike system to power the couple through their expedition. It allows you to go the extra distance, and tackle rides you might have otherwise thought beyond your capabilities, so that you can see things, and experience adventures, you would have never thought possible.

The power-assisted EP8 meant that both Oli and Anais could cycle farther than they ever had done in a day before, and helped take them from the cycle path that surrounds the lake up into the more secluded mountains for a unique experience that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

“I've been riding bikes for longer than Anais and I'm used to long rides, so it was great to show her how far an e-bike can get you,” says Oli. “Obviously, after cycling such a long distance we were both exhausted, but the views along the way made it all worthwhile.

“The EP8 is so much quieter, too,” adds Oli. “You can barely hear the engine, even when in Boost mode. We also found the EP8 system very responsive and it reacts perfectly to the watts you put into pedaling. It assists you when needed and cuts off at the right times.”

Now that Lake Annecy is ticked off their list they are beginning to plan their next weekend cycling adventure. “We are thinking about fully loading up the bikes and going for a two- or three-day adventure. The Via Rhôna cycle path seems like a good objective.”