Maintain your old Siemens Hipath system

Tips for Mountain Bikers in Spain

As any keen mountain biker will know, there are some important rules to follow and bike handling skills to master before subjecting yourself and your bike to the thrills and spills of off-road riding. Although most of us ride within our capabilities most of the time, riding on different trails in hot weather conditions can present a new set of challenges requiring some new biking skills and knowledge.

Here in Southern Spain, I spend most of my time riding in warm and dry conditions, on shale/gravel trails in relatively remote areas, at medium to high altitude (1000 ? 4000 ft). I say relatively remote, in that I seldom meet other bikers, hikers or other like-minded individuals. In other words, you must be prepared to patch yourself up and get yourself off the mountainside in the event of an accident.

Here are some points to consider before embarking on your Spanish MTB adventure.

Planning routes:

Map it out - When planning routes for yourself and other bikers to ride, get hold of a map first. I use the 1:25,000 topographical maps published by the Centro Nacional De Informacion Geografica (CNIG). They show most off-road vehicle tracks, forestry access roads and some single track/footpaths.

Note: I am not sure how often they are updated. Some trails marked on these maps can suddenly disappear. On the other hand, I have ridden trails, which are not indicated, on the maps.

Terrain and time of year -Taking into account the distance, terrain, altitude, gradients and vegetation you can plan a suitable route for the time of year.

Mid-summer (early morning and evening riding advisable) look for shaded trails, low gradients with less altitude gain and think about places to refill water bottles.

Mid-winter This time of year it can be lovely and warm (15-20 deg C ) at sea level and pretty chilly (0-5) at 1000+ metres. When ascending you are generating a lot of heat, coming down the other side at 40Kph + you are subjecting your body to a wind chill factor which can drop temperatures a further 10 degrees. - carry extra layers of clothing.

Preparation :

Rider - You of course, must be fit for the ride and this cannot be achieved the night before.?? although it can be enhanced by laying off the San Miguel. Eat a decent breakfast, mainly carbohydrates, Cereal, toast and fruit for example. Stretch before you leave and spin in a low gear for about 1 km when you first set off (especially in winter). Know some first-aid that you can administer to yourself as well as to others. E.g dealing with Bleeding and serious grazes.

Bike & bits - Bike set-up and Maintenance is much the same everywhere so I won't bore you with details of what you already know, however pay attention to the following.

-Check for any play in wheel, steering and bottom bracket bearings. With a lot of fast descents and rocky ground it is worth a quick adjustment before any loose bits get worse.

-Chain needs regular attention in these dry, dusty conditions (every 2-3 rides). Run it through a cleaner, apply fine oil and then remove any excess lubricant, which only acts as a magnet to any dirt. Clean shocks and apply thin film of silicone-based lubricant

-Tyres, nice 'n' knobbly if you're intending to be off-road 90 % of the time. With a lot of climbing on loose surfaces and descents on rocky stuff I get more traction and comfort with wider tyres at a lower pressure.

-2 spare tubes ( at least) - There are some vicious plants in the campo, especially prominent in the summer months, with thorns like you wouldn't believe. Check inside surface of tyre thoroughly before fitting new tube ? where there is one thorn there could be many.

- Helmet and gloves - This should go without saying.

Water - I usually allow for 1L of water per hour of riding. In the winter on a leisurely low level ride you may drink less than this, during the summer months it can be double. When the weather is hot, I carry 2 bottles on the bike and 2 in my rucksack. Most villages and towns have a natural spring or potable water available somewhere, on longer routes it is worth knowing where the nearest habitations are.

Food - Unlike thirst, hunger pangs will pass. On a short ride in warm conditions you may not even feel like eating ? the wet stuff is far more important. However it is not advisable to deplete energy reserves so always have some driedfruit/muesli bar with you ? Newsagents are not a common feature of Spanish villages and café/bars may not be open all day.

First-aid kit ? This doesn't need to be bulky. A small well-packed container, including the following; Bandage, gauze pads, safety pins, plasters, antiseptic cream.

Clothing ? for comfort and protection from exposure to the sun and cold.

-2 or more thin layers especially on upper body for better temperature regulation, increased insulation ( more air layers) and protection against grazing if you fall off.

- Bandanas one folded and tied around the forehead keeps sweat out of your eyes.

Another folded diagonally and tied loosely to keep sun off back of neck. - Sunglasses - High protection sun-cream on any exposed skin.

Safety on the trail:

Hazards such as loose surfaces, ditches, eroded gullies and the like will always be present ? it's something that appeals to us MTBers. Accidents occur when we are unfamiliar with these conditions, over confident in our ability or meet with something unexpected in our path. Good bike handling skills can prevent or help get you out of a sticky moment, however when taking on steep descents and tricky technical sections be prepared for the unexpected.

Dogs - Some people are put off from biking and walking in Spain because of the dogs they may encounter. More often than not this will be when passing by/through a farmyard. In my experiences (which doesn't include any nasty ones yet ? touch wood) Spanish mutts come under the following categories;

1. Bark and run away

2. Bark and chase

3. Total disinterest in your presence.

In most cases it isn't always clear whether the dog is of type 1 or 2 until you have committed yourself to entering its territory. If you are starting a long descent when they give chase, you can give a two-finger salute and go for it. If however you are grinding uphill in 1st gear and the blighter is loping at your side with plenty in reserve it can be a bit intimidating ? and you probably won't care much for my categorising.

When passing farm buildings, I always assume that dogs are present. If they do appear but remain at a distance and bark, I stand on my pedals to make myself taller and ride slowly but confidently past. If a dog/dogs begins to advance I shout "FUERA" the term often used to send a dog out or away. This will usually work and also bring your presence to the attention of the household. You can advance and repeat this procedure if the animal is reluctant to give way. Stooping as if to pick up a rock can also intimidate Spanish dogs.

If you feel at this stage that it is still too risky then trust your instinct and retreat to find an alternative route.

In my experience, dogs will not attack if you retreat in a calm but confident manner ? DON' T RUN.

In general

Plan your ride

Don't ride alone on unfamiliar trails

Carry spares and sufficient water

Protect your body from falls and extreme weather conditions.

Then get out there and enjoy yourself!

Steve Murray lives in Spain and runs an Adventure Sports Company Abdal Adventures.

In The News:

Canary Islands volcano eruption could last for three months, experts say
Wed, 22 Sep 2021 09:36:00 +0100
A volcanic eruption in Spain's Canary Islands could last three months, experts have said.

How bad is the damage in La Palma - and why is lava meeting the ocean so dangerous?
Wed, 22 Sep 2021 06:50:00 +0100
Authorities have warned people on the island of La Palma of fresh dangers after a new volcanic vent blew open and rivers of unstoppable lava flowed towards more densely populated areas and the sea.

Mystery woman found in Croatia with memory loss identified by police
Wed, 22 Sep 2021 16:36:00 +0100
A woman found with memory loss in a remote area of Croatia has now been identified by police.

US to donate 500m extra vaccine shots - as Biden tells rich nations to share 'with no strings attached'
Wed, 22 Sep 2021 17:57:00 +0100
The US is buying a further 500 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to donate to other countries, bringing its total commitment to over a billion jabs, President Joe Biden has announced.

Throw away your Chinese phones, Lithuanian defence ministry tells citizens after software discovery
Wed, 22 Sep 2021 11:10:00 +0100
The Lithuanian Ministry of Defence has urged people to stop buying Chinese phones and throw away the ones they already possess after discovering censorship software.



tikatoshop.it

Erfahrungen mit Pallhuber Wein
Agen Bola SBOBET Terpercaya

Travel in comfort and at your leisure with CT Airlink Limousine & Car Service for top quality private transportation and exceptional customer service. We operate Sedans, SUVs & Vans for CT Car Services to covering all Connecticut airports including Car Service from CT to Newark Airport , Mohegan Casino Uncasville CT, Foxwoods Casino Mashantucket CT, Manhattan Cruise Terminal NYC, Brooklyn Cruise Terminal NYC and Bayonne Cruise Terminal NJ. CT Airlink hire licensed and friendly chauffeurs who have in-depth knowledge of the Areas.

Hiking Safely on the Hills

SAFE WALKING TREKKING OUTDOORSIf you are contemplating a long distance... Read More

Navigating on the Mountain, in Water, or in Woods there is an eTrex Unit For You

Truly a small wonder, the eTrex takes the best features... Read More

Hiking Trails Mt. Washington Valley NH - Trekking trails USA

Mt. Washington Valley Trails & Mt Washington - NHThe highest... Read More

Calculate Food Quantities for Camping and Outdoor Recreation

As the warmer weather approaches, we look forward to another... Read More

Canoe Trip with Nature

A canoe trip is a great way to appreciate Nature!A... Read More

Scotland - The New White Water Rafting Capital of Europe

Scotland has taken its place as the new Mecca for... Read More

Review: Russell Shortos The Island At The Center Of The World

Up to now the preponderant view held by many historians... Read More

Camping - Get Those Tents Up!

Have you ever thought you might like to try a... Read More

Find a Camping Gear Outlet Near You

When you search online for a camping gear outlet you... Read More

Edible Wild Plants For Backpackers

Knowing a few edible wild plants can make your next... Read More

Great Family Camping Trips Make Excellent Traditions

A wonderful way to invest in your families' treasure trove... Read More

Find Outdoor Camping Gear Online at Great Discount Prices

Before you take off on that great outdoor adventure, be... Read More

Boston Vacations: Four Ways To Experience Beantown

Boston is a great destination city for a vacation. There's... Read More

Visiting Croatia

Croatia has quickly become Europe's hottest destination, and for good... Read More

Inflatable Boat Trailers

An inflatable boat trailer is needed if the user has... Read More

Tamil Nadu ? A potpourri of culture and festivity

Tamil Nadu is a delightful anachronism. With a rich culture... Read More

Shark Pictures Not The Real Thing

Pictures of a massive dead Great White shark on the... Read More

How to Save Money AND help the planet

Don't all of us love to have the money to... Read More

A Thumb Sketch Outline of Tanzania?s Attractions and National Parks

The Northern Circuit is probably Africa's most dramatic wildlife area.... Read More

Bird Watching Journals ? Preserve Your Bird Watching Experiences

Bird Watching is a great way to escape the rat... Read More

Mount Chimborazo: Climbing Glaciers Near The Equator

The climb up the glaciers to the summit of Mount... Read More

River Rafting in Washington State

The great state of Washington offers some of the best... Read More

Protection from Lightning - Smart Strategies for Hikers and All Outdoor Enthusiasts

Prevention is your best protection against lightning. Be sure to... Read More

Penguin Parade

Phillip Island is a small island and nature reserve off... Read More

How To Buy a Used RV - Part 1

If you are on a tight budget and can't afford... Read More