Last winter we were lucky enough to catch up with Edwige and Jérémy Cousseau, founders of Mountain E-Park in Les Gets. The first venture of its kind in France, Edwige and Jérémy probably have one of the best jobs in the world; they teach kids to ride electric snowmobiles and trials bikes, so they’re doing their bit for the environment and helping kids have fun at the same time! Here, Edwige tells us all about the benefits of going electric.
“Before we started Mountain E-Park, I worked in social services and my husband Jérémy worked in civil engineering. We’re passionate motor sports fans but we also love the mountains and working with kids. We wanted to combine these passions and to make a sustainable, environmentally focused business from them.
At Mountain E-Park we offer four main activities. Firstly, there are introductory sessions on our electric snowmobiles for children aged five to 12 years, in addition to electric trials bike lessons for little ones aged between six and 14. We also rent electric drift trikes to adults and children aged 10 and over at events across France, while at the same time selling electric snowmobiles and drift trikes. Our aim is to change the image of motor sports in the mountains by making all equipment 100% electric!
Our electric snowmobiles and drift trikes are totally unique. We worked in partnership with Quantya, a Swiss manufacturer of leisure-based, adult-sized electric snowmobiles, to develop a prototype for the first electric snowmobile for children. In January 2017 we launched our first electric snowmobile park in Les Gets. Now we offer 15-minute introduction sessions, supervised by Jérémy on a clearly marked snowy circuit away from the pistes.
Watching our business develop in the mountains is very rewarding. And of course this is not just a winter business. Last summer we were able to run our park on the Chavannes side of Les Gets, offering electric trails bikes to children aged between six and 14. Again, this is an entirely new activity in the mountains and we’ve been delighted by the feedback. In fact, resorts in the mountains across France have contacted us – they want a Mountain E-Park too!
People often ask us ‘why electric?’ We believe we have a responsibility to teach children that fuel engines are not the future. Fuel engines take time to maintain, they’re expensive, noisy and very bad for the environment. Electric engines are the future. Plus, electric trails bikes and snowmobiles are easier to drive than their fuel-powered alternatives and Jérémy can continue to teach children while their engines are running.
Motor sports also have quite a dangerous reputation, one that we’re trying hard to change! Of course it’s important to learn the basics – equipment, safety and respect for the environment. Each of our classes includes close supervision to ensure maximum safety at all times.
We really hope to welcome you to Mountain E Park in Les Gets this winter!”
Mountain E Park is located next to the Lac d’Ecoles sector of Les Chavannes and it’s easily accessible by bus from the resort centre or on your skis! This winter electric snowmobile sessions for kids will also take place in Avoriaz, head to mountainepark.com for further details or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Check availability by calling +33 (0) 6 76 96 88 98.