Cycling, climbing and recovery equipment, the crazy adventure of the Ladevant brothers

The Ladevant brothers are not the type to stand idly by. Don’t skimp on the preparation of your projects. Six months after finishing first and third respectively at the ice climbing worlds, Louna and Tristan Ladevant, 21 and 24, have set themselves a new challenge. Climbers embark on a three-week journey to reach, by bike, some of the most beautiful climbing spots in Europe. Accompanied by videographer Damien Largeron and climbers Symon Welfringer and Thomas Joannes in certain parts, they have chosen to embark on a low carbon footprint adventure. They use second-hand or recovered equipment, and limit their expenses to the maximum.

At the origin of this project, there is a discussion between videographer and photographer Damien Largeron and the Ladevant brothers. The first wants to develop a project around second-hand equipment while filming the trip, and the climbers want to add a notion of high-level sports performance. The project is launched. Symon Welfringer, Piolet d’Or 2021, will accompany the trio on the first part of the trip, before leaving his equipment to another talented climber, Thomas Joannes, for the second part.

“Beyond the sports project, it was important to show that it is possible to have an adventure with a limited budget, discover new things and leave our comfort zone a little”

This material remains to be found. And organize so that the total expenses do not exceed €1000 per person. “We absolutely wanted the stay to cost no more than the price of a high-end phone, symbolically we put that limit”, explains Louna Ladevant. Hunting in private resale sites or in second-hand shops, the group manages to find bikes for between €50 and €150 per unit. Some technical problems are solved in participatory workshops so that the machines are ready to chain the kilometers. Only the standardized climbing safety equipment belongs to the brothers and is not included in the total cost.

After a short train journey to Verona (included in the €1,000), the athletes launched their adventure arriving in the Dolomites massif, where the “Bellavista” multi-course, rated 8b+, was the first stage of the your trip . “We didn’t know the Dolomites at all, says Louna Ladevant. Unfortunately, we arrived very tired from our first few days of cycling (120 kilometers per day and up to 1,750 m of elevation gain), and our pack forced us to limit ourselves on food and water. In the end, we didn’t achieve the planned sequence, but we gave it our all on this wall.”

The adventurers then got back on the pedals, heading to Innsbruck, Austria. Then transition to Berchtesgaden, in the southern tip of Germany, where the Wall of Fire route (8b, Feuerhorn) awaits them, the last stage before arriving in Salzburg and catching the train to conclude the journey on 31 july

“It gives me great pleasure to pedal, I didn’t imagine so much, Louna Ladevant rejoices. It is more accessible than you think, even if it is the weight of our burdens (45kg) it slows us down We had some technical issues that we had to deal with. One of our connecting rods broke and we had to ask the neighbors for help, who managed to weld the piece that had fallen off so we could return to the track without problems.”.

The brothers Ladevant and Symon Welfringer discovered the Dolomites, in Italy, after several days of cycling. (D. Largeron)

In order to close the loop on this low-carbon project, the Ladevant brothers and their friends will organize a call for projects in a few months to donate their bikes and the equipment used during the trip. “We will select the most motivating challenge, with a great story, and we will provide logistical support and our network to have real continuity”explains Louna Ladevant.

And even if not all the climbs are finished, the goal is not there. “For us, beyond the sports project, it was important to show that it is possible to have an adventure with a limited budget, discover new things and leave our comfort zone a little! », concludes Louna Ladevant. inspiring

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