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Tour de Mongolia – A Solar Powered Electric Bike Tour! Lots of Pictures.
Aug 16, 2012
What a way to travel in Mongolia, by solar powered electric bikes!
Last year I became friends with Susanne Brüsch and Ondra Veltrusky, the founders of Pedelec Adventures, when I was at the Bike Expo in Munich and Eurobike in Friedrichshafen Germany.
They are great e-bike advocates who want to show the world what can be done on an electric bike. Touring Mongolia on solar powered electric bikes is definitely a great way to promote electric bikes!
The following is their press release with a bunch of amazing pictures from their journey. Enjoy!
The solar electric bikes on the Tour de Mongolia.
In their latest tour, the founders of Pedelec Adventures – journalist Susanne Brüsch and expedition leader Ondra Veltrusky – crossed breath-taking scenery from Mongolia’s geographical center to the old capital Karakorum on electric bikes.
The Berlin-based team truly put Bosch’s most powerful propulsion system to the test – fording rivers and scaling steep hills on speed pedelecs (pedal electric cycles) from the German brands Kreidler and Riese & Müller.
Using solar panels mounted on trailers to charge the bike batteries and other devices, the adventurers were able to supply all their electrical energy from the sun – an entirely self-sufficient way to travel. But that’s not to say there weren’t challenges – an impromptu horse race among others…
Hills and valleys, heat and hail were all part of Tour de Mongolia! The two “e-nomads”, Susanne Brüsch and Ondra Veltrusky, rode through the wilderness of Mongolia on a brand- new cross bike from Kreidler and a touring bike from Riese & Müller. Both speed pedelecs were equipped with Bosch’s most powerful propulsion system.
A little electric assist can help on a climb with all that gear!
With the help of an extra 350-500 watts, allowing for speeds of up to 45km/h, the team crossed meadows and marshes, stony fields and loose sand. Dusty roads on hot dry days and flooded paths after heavy thunderstorms were both equal parts of the scenery. Navigation was with map, compass, and the valuable advice of the natives – even if the only common language was gestures and smiles!
The all-terrain one-wheel trailers from Tout Terrain served as the team’s “mules” and mobile charging stations. For this trip, electric bike specialist Ecomo21 had specially equipped the trailers with swiveling solar panels. Thanks to the ability to keep the panels constantly tilted in the direction of the most sunlight, the adventurers were able to cover all of their energy needs for the tour from solar power.
Ondra enjoying his solar electric bike in Mongolia!
The Bosch eBike system, bikes, trailers and charging devices withstood all challenges without any major breakdowns. “With a traveling speed of up to 30 km/h on good flat paths, we were quickly used to the extra watts.” says Brüsch. “But, what had seemed so easy to do with our own effort, rapidly turned into a strenuous endeavor as soon as the battery was empty or we shut the engine off.”
Some of the amazing sites along the solar electric bike Tour de Mongolia.
After a little practice, the pedelec fans were often surprised how quickly and smoothly they mastered difficult routes, even though they were each weighed down with almost 50kg of baggage. “On a normal bike – with the same speed transmission – we would probably have avoided a steep incline of over 1000 meters altitude difference while carrying that much stuff.” admits Brüsch. “On this climb, we really drove the powerful pedelecs to their limits, not to mention ourselves!”
Susi rode the Riese and Muller electric bike on the Tour de Mongolia.
From beginning to end of their multi-week tour, from Mongolia’s geographical center to the old capital Karakorum and through the surrounding mountains, the pedelec nomads were a fascinating attraction for the natives. Luckily, the standard deal could be negotiated without many words: bike in exchange for horse (or motorcycle).
Ondra rode the Kreidler electric bike on the Tour de Mongolia.
And they all came back smiling! “It was quite an experience when we zoomed up a mountain pass neck and neck with Mongolian horsemen,” remembers Veltrusky. “We could keep up easily if the horses were just trotting, but when they started galloping, we did indeed lack a few watts to keep pace! Either way, sprints like this were a lot of fun!”
Ondra and Susi taking a picture break on the solar electric bike Tour de Mongolia.
The adventurers agree: “Apart from racing, you quickly learn to slow down in Mongolia and let life flow at its own pace. Immersing ourselves in the Nomads’ life was a wonderful, multi-faceted experience, full of unique stories to tell back at home.”
Ondra studying the map along the Tour de Mongolia.
Visit us and learn more about Tour de Mongolia and our stories:
A local test riding the Riesse and Muller electric bike.
About Pedelec Adventures
Pedelec Adventures is a project founded by journalist Susanne Brüsch and expedition leader Ondra Veltrusky in 2011. These supreme outdoor enthusiasts develop travel concepts involving adventure tours for pedelecs and e-bikes to inspiring destinations around the globe. They turn their concept into fact by organizing and riding these exciting tours. Their multi-day or multi-week excursions are designed as product field tests and as content for unique reports, presentations, photos and videos. The Berlin-based cycle fans and industry professionals have joined forces in order to promote electric mobility in a way that demonstrates the fun that can be had with these vehicles. After Morocco (www.tour-de-sahara.com), Tour de Mongolia is their second adventure. And there are more to come – stay tuned!
Ondra and Susi taking a break along the Tour de Mongolia.
About Bosch eBike Systems
A new generation of bikes is taking town and country by storm and is already a part of everyday life. Pedelecs, or pedal electric cycles, are a modern means of transport for modern people. The tailwind of technology-leading pedelecs made by what are already around 40 leading manufacturers in Europe is powered by components that Bosch is developing to perfection. The Bosch portfolio ranges from the highly efficient drive unit (motor and gearbox) and high-quality batteries to a smart on-board and cycle computer that can be used intuitively. Perfect coordination of components holds the key to typical Bosch performance in terms of both comfort and efficiency.
Talking with the locals on the Tour de Mongolia.
Like other Bosch products, the eBike systems benefit from the Bosch Group’s technology and production know-how. From conception and engineering to manufacturing, marketing and after-sales service, Bosch eBike Systems constantly set new standards for the eBike industry. The Bosch Group’s experience in the areas of electric motors, sensor technology, displays and lithium-ion batteries ensures that Bosch eBike systems use technology that is invented for life and that eBike users have their fun.