Sanne Hitipeuw: Cyclist first, lawyer second

Sanne is an adventurous soul excited by the places her bike can (and does) take her – be they physical places on a map, or explorations of her own thoughts and feelings. She loves beautiful winding roads and empty gravel tracks and is lucky to have enjoyed plenty of both over the last few years. A lawyer by profession, Sanne prioritzes her cycling and as a result has been on some amazing trips which have challenged her to the extreme. 

Her love for two wheels and her passion for exploration make her a great ambassador for komoot! 

Read more from her in the short Q&A below:

Describe yourself in three words

Small. Very small.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve eaten on a ride?

Durian. When I was bike touring in Indonesia, I regularly ate it on our breaks. The fruit is widely sold in small street stalls, and tastes like a mix of vanilla custard, garlic, onion and blue cheese – all at the same time… with an ammonia-like undertone. In Asia it’s illegal to bring durian into hotels, restaurants or other public places because the smell is so strong that the “stench” lingers in the room for hours. It’s not called the “stink fruit” for nothing. In any case I like it, but it does take getting used to.

What’s the weirdest wardrobe malfunction you’ve seen or experienced?

The version of myself the first time on the bike. A mismatched look of trainers, sports shorts, a vest, and a skewed helmet.

What motivates you to get outside and explore?

Getting to know the unknown.

Disc or rim brakes?

From a sentimental point of view, rim brakes. Classic, and aesthetically my preference. Functionality? Absolutely disc! They work much better for my riding style – I love the mountains and I also like riding in bad weather.

Tell us about your most epic ride yet?

A recent trip was a 4-day MTB route through the Alps and Tyrol from refuge to refuge. Photographer Vincent Engel had mapped out the route and we went out together. Despite the fact that they were MTB trails (including Gold See trail), we rode gravel bikes with bike bags (Vincent thought it was possible). This was my first experience with Alpine MTB trails and my first ride with my new Diverge so I was quite nervous. I also have a slight fear of heights. I think 50% of the trip was hike-a-bike, with the bike on my back on narrow snow-covered paths, along super steep ravines. The entire trip was a great adventure and everything I did was constantly out of my comfort zone. It was a big challenge on paths that were barely accessible and actually not suitable for a gravel bike. Yet we did it and the views were to die for. It was epic.

Looking forward, what plans do you have for the year?

I planned to visit Norway – a 3-week gravel adventure bikepacking, camping with a rooftop tent, and a 4-wheel drive. But that was canceled. Instead we’re going to Austria. Next year? Hopefully Norway and Malaysia after all.

What is the most unusual item in your toolkit?

I am 1.56m “tall”. My bike is so small that with size 44 I don’t even have room to take the “usual” items, let alone the “unusual” ones.

What has been the biggest cycling game-changer for you?

Too many to mention. But the multi-day bikepacking trips have increased my urge for adventure even more.

Why do you recommend komoot?

Because it is simply the best route planner out there! Gravel routes, road, mtb, hiking? Komoot offers it all! It offers me so much inspiration for beautiful routes (the Highlight feature is my absolute favorite) that my rides are getting better and more beautiful.

In the current climate with limitations on getting outside, how are you using komoot to keep your adventure-fire stoked?

I can spend hours planning the “perfect” route, and trips that aren’t even concrete yet. I plan from Highlight to Highlight so that I can see all the cool places. Komoot makes me dream about many beautiful things.