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  • Chris O'Connor

VVX Volvic Volcanic Experience 2019

Cojo Films recently visited the Massif Central region of France to preview this year's VVX Trail Race which takes place from May 30th - June 1st.

Arriving at Clermont Ferrand airport we were greeted by Jean-Michel Chopin, the enthusiastic organiser of the Volvic Volcanic Experience, who wasted no time in briefing us on the unique nature of the event. The concept is simple, to allow runners to experience the stunning volcanic landscape during the race and then to return the following day to revisit the course's many points of interest in a more relaxed environment.

As we were to find out during our visit, there's a lot to see and experience in the Auvergne region.

Over the course of a packed two days we were taken out to run some of the trails that will form part of the race route, including ascents of Puy de Dôme and Puy des Jumes, two of the many volcanoes which make up the Chaîne des Puys region of Massif Central. During the course of the trail runs we were told of the measures being taken to protect the region's environment and preserve the local eco-system.

We visited Vulcania, a volcanoes theme park which combines fun, spectacle and education in equal measure. A must for families.

We met with renowned sculptor Thierry Courtadon who fashions incredible designs from volcanic rock, and were privileged to watch him at work on his latest project.

On the second day of our visit we were shown the processes involved in producing locally sourced Volvic Water and, later that day, we were treated to a fascinating lecture by Professor Grégory Doucende who is researching into the mechanics, technique and psychology of trail running. The Volvic Volcanic Experience is a unique event in the trail running calendar. Being more than just a race it’s also a chance to experience the culture, landscape and heritage of the Auvergne region.

The message from the race organisers is simple..

“..follow in the footsteps of the men and women you’ll meet who are passionate about their local area and want to share a timeless experience with you, helping you discover a remarkable land shaped by volcanoes, stone and water. You can visit artisan workshops and some truly symbolic attractions, such as the Volvic Impluvium, as you uncover the region’s rich heritage.”

With five race options, ranging from 15km to 220km, the event caters for all abilities including a new VVX Kids Trail Race making it ideal for those with families.


The “XGTV®” Great Volcanic Crossing Experience 220 km for duos - 7,500-m climb Limited to 30 teams of two

The Chaîne des Puys - Limagne Fault Trail Experience 110 km solo or for duos or trios - 3,500-m climb Limited to 400 participants

The Volvic Impluvium Trail Experience 43 km - 1,670-m climb Limited to 600 participants

The Volcanic Trail Experience 25 km - 900-m climb Limited to 500 participants

The Lava Trail Experience 15 km - 550-m climb Limited to 500 participants

For more information visit:

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