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Cycling in Andalucia

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Offline BikerBoy

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« on: April 03, 2008, 19:53 PM »
Well what a great week. I think I've ridden every main road, quiet country lane and mountain this week around Grazalema. Cycling some 800km and climbing over 14,000 metres in height. :dancing:

At times I have questioned my sanity for doing so, but then all I have to do is look at all the wild flowers coming out on the side of the roads and listen to the bird song along the way and it all seems worth the effort.

Now I know, Clive and Sue, would say 'You could see much more by car and safe yourself a whole load of pain' but I beg to differ. There is not a day go by whilst I'm out on my bike that I don't spot something new. Now unfortunately I can't remember the name of a flower or bird to safe my bacon, I can just about point out olive and cork trees but I do usually have my camera.

So over the next few months I'll be posting some pics for ID purposes and would like to ask you all to educate me in such matters, Claire my lovely wife has stopped trying due to my inability to retain such information. Your help is required!!!
« Last Edit: August 03, 2008, 09:26 AM by BikerBoy »
BikerBoy

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www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2008, 20:04 PM »
Greetings BikerBoy,
Long may your endorfinas keep you in yer saddle!
Impressed-and-envious-ex-biker regs.,
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline Clive

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« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2008, 20:09 PM »
Hey there, glad to see you are still fit and well and still have enough energy to post here on the forum...

To explain to others that don't know. Biker boy runs excellent cycling holidays and every know and then our paths cross as we are fumbling along the road looking for orchids or something and he trundles past wind whistling in his ears. This guy can hold a conversation whilst pedalling up a hill that makes me want to sit down and take a breather..(The boy is obviously mad)... Damned fit though. This past week he has had a group of triathletes out for a spring training camp riding up the mountains and I believe a long haul down to the coast and back...Coming back up from the coast is hard enough in a car but on a bike ???... There was talk about whether or not his legs would survive the ordeal but all seems well.........

Look forward to seeing more post from biker boy and hopefully see you sometime over the forum summit weekend....

Clive
Explore the nature of Iberia at www.wildsideholidays.com

The beautiful town of Ronda, the City of Dreams?

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Offline judith

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« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2008, 20:56 PM »
Bikerboy, I would have thought you were much safer on foot/bike....no chance of being driven into ravines by mad Spanish drivers etc., well at least you can avoid being driven off the road by stopping!
Also, we notice far more on foot/bike than we ever do in a car! How can you see that rare orchid by car unless someone on foot has told you exactly where it is! Also no carbon footprint!
Keep yer muscles fit ....but don't do tooo many hills, it's bad for your heart!!!!

Offline lisa

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« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2008, 07:15 AM »
To start the ID ball rolling, to the left in the photo is a beer bottle (Cervisia campera). Hope Bikerboy picked it (up).
(Def. not bringing my bike next week  :))
www.picos-accommodation.co.uk
Accommodation, ski touring, snowshoeing, walking and info on the flora and fauna of the Picos de Europa.
SAVE SPANISH BEARS!
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2008, 07:22 AM »
Oh, oh! These early birds (Pajaritus tempranus) aren't 'alf sharp! Hope they let us sleep in at Grazalema - might just be bringing me trusty rusty 12-bore ...
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
http://www.iberianatureforum.com/index.php/topic,266

Offline tonyninfas

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« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2008, 09:36 AM »
HI BikerBoy
Welcome to this great forum where I am sure that someone will be able to ID your pics for you.
Looking forward to reading your postings.

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2008, 17:32 PM »
Well the Birmingham Running and Triathlon Clubs spring training camp is over and the biker boy has survived. No, in fact more than survived ready and raring to do it all again v. soon. The ride down to San Pedro was grrrrrrrrreat and the return journey...... well lets just say it takes your breath away. My favourite part of the week was descending into Gaucin with views of Gibraltar and the med.

Lisa thankyou for the beer bottle picture it's almost enough to make you T total.........almost!!!!

Claire and I are hoping to catch up with everyone over the forum summit weekend either on the Sunday or Monday evening.

Next week we have a Leisure and Family cycling holiday week which Claire will be guiding whilst I stay at home with Sophie our 6 month old daughter.

But before that a days rest before joining the Ronda Boys on our weekly ride, I think we are off to the lakes at Ardales and back :clapping:

BikerBoy

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www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline Sue

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« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2008, 23:52 PM »
Well done BikerBoy,

now you can enjoy your Birthday resting on your laurels!!    :clapping:


                                          HAVE A GREAT DAY
Thinking of visiting the beautiful Sierra de Grazalema in Andalucia?
www.grazalemaguide.com

Offline tonyninfas

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« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2008, 08:53 AM »
Happy Birthday from Catalonia, Biker Boy
  :dancing:

Offline Dave

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« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2008, 10:08 AM »
Hi Bikerboy
Happy Birthday from Leon
Regards
Dave

Offline judith

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« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2008, 11:32 AM »
.......and Happy Birthday Bikerboy, from Extremadura
Hope you enjoy it!

Offline lisa

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« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2008, 22:28 PM »
Hope you're having a good one BikerBoy, not too many beers  :)
www.picos-accommodation.co.uk
Accommodation, ski touring, snowshoeing, walking and info on the flora and fauna of the Picos de Europa.
SAVE SPANISH BEARS!
And now,
The Picos de Europa
Your complete English guide to these beautiful mountains of Northern Spain.

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2008, 17:31 PM »
Last Thursday George, Alistair, Brian & Bill arrived from Glasgow for a week of road cycling in and around the Grazalema Natural Park.
Day 1 we rode around the lake to Zahara and then upto Grazalema, the lake still looks like it could do with 4 years of rainfall to refill it and unfortunately due to some recent rainfall the locals seem to think that the whole area is saved for another year.....NOT!!!! :banghead:
Day 2 Olvera, Setenil and El Gastor were visited one of my favourite rides as we stop in Setenil for tapa's yum yum before we return home.
Day 3 Los Palomas and Bill & Brian have a rest day whilst George and Alistair do their first ever Catorgorised climb in around 1hr 30mins. :clapping:
Day 4 We all head off to Ronda, then down the Genal valley across to Jimera before climbing up to the Cueva Piletas and onto Montejaque. Close to the Cueva Brian saw a Egyptian Mongoose (and before any of you ask Clive ID the Mongoose from Brian's description ....nothing to do with me) Thanks Clive!!
Day 5 A few hangovers (thanks Clive & Sue) were quickly blown away as we rode to Ubrique and then over Puerto El Boyar
Tomorrow the boys have given me the day off as they are going to ride Los Palomas again.....some people like punishment.

Another great weeks road cycling in the Grazalema Natural Park. Well done lads!

By the way on recent trips I've seen an insect about an inch and a half long, black with red stripes and cornetto shaped...What is it??
« Last Edit: May 20, 2008, 17:34 PM by BikerBoy »
BikerBoy

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www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline Sue

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« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2008, 11:48 AM »
Hi Bikerboy,

another trip over the Puerto de Las Palomas!!  :o
It is cloudy over the pass, so they may get a bit damp - current weather report from Clive's office window. Warm the kettle rather than chill the beer today  :biggrin:

Could your beetle be Berberomeloe majalis aka Red-striped oil beetle
Curilla or Aceitera in Spanish

regards,
Sue
« Last Edit: July 31, 2008, 12:57 PM by Clive »
Thinking of visiting the beautiful Sierra de Grazalema in Andalucia?
www.grazalemaguide.com

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2008, 14:41 PM »
Thanks Sue for the beetle ID it was indeed the red striped oil beetle.

TVM

BB
BikerBoy

Passionate about Pedalling, Bonkers about Bikes, Mad about Mountains


www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2008, 12:09 PM »
So what does BikerBoy and his family do on a day off? We go riding on the Via Verde.... why? Becasuse it was our daughter, Sophie, first ever bike ride. Well actual she sat in her chair admiring the view as Dad aka Biker Boy pedalled and Mum aka Biker Girl rode along side taking pictures.

The Via Verde 'Greenway' joins the municipalities of Puerto Serrano and Olvera and is 36km long with 30 tunnels and 4 Viaducts. The railway line was originally build in the late 1920's and ran from Jerez to Almargen but was never actually used. During the Spanish Civil War the tracks were removed and melted down to build military weapons. Nowadays it is used for recreational purposes for walking, bike and horse riding. Along the 36km there are 5 old railway stations, 3 of which (those at Puerto Serrano, Coripe and Olvera) have been refurbished and are now B&B's with cafe/restaurants downstairs, another at the Peñon Zaframagon is an information centre for the Giffon Vulture and the last a Navagruilla is yet to be renovated.

Today we rode from Coripe to the Peñoñ Zaframagon information centre and back, some 12km. The Via Verde is one of our favourite places to ride bring family and leisure riders on their holidays as there is no traffic and you get to see a part of this beautiful region that you could not experience if travelling by car.

Sophie had a great time squealing all the way with a huge gummy smile :)
« Last Edit: June 20, 2008, 12:11 PM by BikerBoy »
BikerBoy

Passionate about Pedalling, Bonkers about Bikes, Mad about Mountains


www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2008, 09:45 AM »
Last week saw our good friends Sarah & Bhavesh come over for their 3rd andalucian cycling experience.

The rides were completed at a relaxing pace with a mid morning stop for second breakfast, which usually consisted of coffee and toasted topped with garlic, olive oil and fresh tomatoes. We rode on average 35km a day and set off early to ensure we missed the mid afternoon heat and were back in time for a wee siesta. The rides took us to Benoacaz, Cueva de Piletas and Cueva de Gatos, to Prado del Rey, Olvera and down the Genal Valley. The temperature was in the early 30's and the skies were cloudless as we meandered through the beautiful Andalucian countryside through forests of holm oak, passing olive groves and vineyards and field upon field of brilliant yellow sun flowers.

This year we broke the riding up with a walk half way through the week. I took Sarah & Bhavesh on one of Claire's favourite walks Mr Henderson's Railway. The route takes us along a single track down the valley from Benoajan to Jimera where we all saw loads of butterflies including a white one with black vein type markings, a yellow one (all yellow) and a dark browny coloured one with orange on it. We arrive in Jimera in time for a few tapas and an ice cream before catching the train back to Benoajan.

The week wasn't all about the bike, it was about relaxing, having a laugh, enjoying the countryside and being able to completely switch off and de-stress from work back in the UK. There was also a little bit of romance as Bhavesh popped the question.....and Sarah said Yes. So will the honeymoon be another week of leisure riding here in Andalucia???

Congratulations Sarah & Bhavesh!!

BikerBoy

Passionate about Pedalling, Bonkers about Bikes, Mad about Mountains


www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #18 on: July 09, 2008, 09:51 AM »
There is a vicious rumour going round the Grazalema Natural park that an unusual creature with a bright red sweaty face was seen riding/pushing a bike up Puerto Las Palomas at dawn on Tuesday 8th July.

Help is needed in identification.

Any suggestions........Clive!!!! :technodevil:
BikerBoy

Passionate about Pedalling, Bonkers about Bikes, Mad about Mountains


www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com

Offline BikerBoy

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« Reply #19 on: July 31, 2008, 11:35 AM »
Mountain biking, off road cycling call it what you like.......it's grrrrrrrrrrreat!! :clapping:

Recently Julian came over for a weeks mountain biking and we rode a mixture of epic cross country routes and technical single track rides. As most of my clients know I spend an incredible amount of time out on my mountain bike looking for quality singletrack, exhillerating downhill and fast flowing jeep tracks. This area of Spain is becoming more popular for mountain bikers and road cyclists alike and rightly so. Most riders automatically think of the Sierra Nevadas when contemplating a mountain biking holiday in Andalucia, well think again!

We rode between 40 & 55km per day taking the van to the start of each ride we were soon up and out into the beautiful and unspoilt countryside of the Sierra de Libar, Sierra de Lijar, Lagarin, Sierra de Grazalema and the valleys between Ronda and Setenil. Julain's desire for singletrack was insatiable, but we forfilled that desire, most days we climbed steadily on vehicle width tracks and then picked up some hard to find singletracks and descended at an incredible rate taking the drop offs and switchbacks at speed the adrenalin pumped through our veins like electricity. The singletrack trails started off steep and technical with many a twist and turn at the top of the mountain and shallowed out as we neared the bottom which enabled us to duck and dive under branches and around rocks as the trail ebbed and flowed along the contour of the mountainside. In truth the climbs left us feeling rather exhausted and sweety but the descents........ where, challenging in places, but left us with ridiculously large grins on our faces. :dancing:

In all an excellent week riding our mountain bikes with Julian an MTB demon :technodevil:
« Last Edit: July 31, 2008, 12:56 PM by Clive »
BikerBoy

Passionate about Pedalling, Bonkers about Bikes, Mad about Mountains


www.andaluciancyclingexperience.com