Viewing 26 posts - 1 through 26 (of 26 total)
  • Which warm, sunny, dusty winter riding spots?
  • sharkattack
    Full Member

    I say I’m going to do this every year but something always ruins it. I did get to Switchbacks in Malaga once but I just calculated that it was 11 years ago. I’m now suddenly 11 years fatter, slower and miserabler.

    I need something to look forward to in the end of Jan to middle of Feb period when I’m walking to work in sleet and we get 7 minutes of daylight per day.

    So, what’s open in the proper depths of winter? I’m quite happy to go to Malaga again but I’d prefer something new. Looking for companies with easy transfers, decent accommodation and uplifted DH or Enduro style trails.

    tomhoward
    Full Member

    I guess Aus/NZ are out of the question?

    thepurist
    Full Member

    South Africa? Long flight but no jetlag.

    RoterStern
    Free Member

    A friend of mine who is a DH/Enduro racer went to La Gomera and came back raving about the trails there.

    kilo
    Full Member

    Another vote for South Africa here.

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    sharkattack
    Full Member

    I guess Aus/NZ are out of the question?

    Yes.

    South Africa? Long flight but no jetlag.

    Not gonna happen.

    I’ve got one week in the northern hemisphere and can hopefully get there in a few hours from Newcastle or Manchester airport.

    thegeneralist
    Full Member

    Utah?
    Best biking on earth, why settle for anything else?
    .
    .
    .

    Well OK, there’s:
    Jetlag
    Long transfer
    Expensive flight
    US customs and immigration
    £1 = $1.03
    Hideous expense.
    High routes will be snowed in.

    But apart from that why settle for anything else? 😉

    Me and t’missus had the best ever holiday there 20 odd years ago and I’m absolutely gutted that ‘rona meant we couldn’t do a rematch with the kids in tow.

    Quick search shows 12 hour 25 flight time from Manc £571….

    Goan

    julians
    Free Member

    In Jan or Feb, with the restriction of being northern hemisphere a few hours from manc or Newcastle, then the only real option is going to be the Canary Islands. We did a few day on Tenerife with lava trax (no idea if they are still going), was good,but not as good as switchbacks in malaga/bubion.

    Madeira is really good (with free ride Madeira) but I suspect the chance of getting guaranteed dry sunny weather in Jan or Feb is significantly lower than the canaries,but maybe I’m wrong on that?

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    Well this thread didn’t deliver the goods that I was looking for! Sorry, I’m just not rich enough for solo trips to the USA. If I could I’d go to Virgin and check out the lower Rampage slopes and hit some baby booters and send some drops. That’s one for the nevernever imagination files.

    I had considered Tenerife and Lavatrax are still in business. Why do you say it’s not as good as Switchbacks?

    There’s a new company in Malaga called ‘Enduro Malaga’ who look like they ride in a different area and offer bigger days out. There’s some wild looking trails on Youtube- http://www.enduromalaga.com/

    frogstomp
    Full Member

    Finale? Maybe ‘not cold’ rather than warm..

    ocrider
    Full Member

    I reckon you’re probably on the right track looking towards southern Spain or the Canaries.
    I’m not at all sure that Utah gets much in the way of warmth in January either. Many ski resorts are a fairly short drive from SLC airport (a quick Google for average temps confirms my suspicions)

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    Finale is an option. I feel like it’s the kind of place I should have visited by now but I’ve never been there.

    Looks like MTB Beds and Justride are the top hits. I’m interested to hear anyone’s experience.

    TheBrick
    Free Member

    Anyone is Greece? Weather should be ok in Feb and they have plenty of good hills

    RoterStern
    Free Member

    Never been riding in Finale(my friend who went to La Gomera goes there at keast 4 times a year) but in January/February it can be wet.

    andos
    Full Member

    Oman

    ready
    Full Member

    There’s a new company in Malaga called ‘Enduro Malaga’

    I went with them in Jan 2019, but I think they’ve just bought/rented that rather nice looking villa. Nathan is an exceptionally good rider, knows the trails really well, and good at judging abilities – would recommend.
    Also look at Earthmtb.com – We had Alex as a guide for a few days last year. Would also recommend!

    andrewh
    Free Member

    Morocco?

    tabletop2
    Full Member

    Finale is covered in snow in Jan/Feb,

    Unsure whether the lower down stuff would still be open but certainly not the higher up stuff

    Sandwich
    Full Member

    Tenerife is usually a dusty place in the South.

    littlerob
    Full Member

    Have just returned from a holiday in Morocco that included 5 days of riding. Flight was 3.5 hours from Stansted-Marrakesh (give or take) and the time is currently the same as UK (though that will change at the end of the month).

    No idea what the weather is like in Jan, but it was bloomin’ hot last week, and we appear to have returned to Siberia.

    Can offer more details if interested (+ links to some strava stuff)

    LR

    sharkattack
    Full Member

    Yes please, who did you stay with? What were the trails like? Pedalling or uplifted?

    johnx2
    Free Member

    I’ve ridden in Gran Canaria in late Feb, hiring from Freemotion and including a day outing on mtb.
    Temps mid 20s lower down, less 1500m up at the start of the ride. Plenty of dust. Here’s a link:

    https://www.free-motion.com/gran-canaria/tours/tour-list/tours/mountainbike/winter/?no_cache=1#content

    militantmandy
    Free Member

    Maderia surely. Not guaranteed to be dry, but we’ve been a few times in December and it’s been mostly warm and dry.

    littlerob
    Full Member

    @sharkattack it was arranged through https://www.mountainbikeworldwide.com/ and was intended to be a short break for the wife and I after our youngest went away to Uni. For reasons that should be only too obvious she’s now in year 3 and we finally went last week 😉

    We’re not very technical, but did do some local skills training (Hadleigh Park) and a guided day in Les Gets to get a bit better, so was mostly non-technical trails (well main roads really!) and some single-track. Some of it was up-lifted, as we had access to a van (it was a private week with a guide + driver/cook in a van). There was also a lot of climbing e.g. https://www.strava.com/activities/7848697591 which included about an hour of hot, dusty, uphill. The single-track was this sort of stuff https://www.strava.com/activities/7854241327

    Overall we did:

    2 days non-riding in Marrakesh.
    2 days in a Berber homestay, though really more of a hostel. This was “basic” (to say the least). The riding was in and around Amizmiz.
    1 night in a tent in the Agafay desert. This was awesome.
    3 nights in a hotel in Imlil.

    The guiding/bike hire was through a local Imlil based company and we were on Scott Genesis 750 bikes which seemed fine to me. They can tailor to pretty much anything, and the guide certainly talked about mounting the bikes 2 to a donkey for some assisted hike-a-bike with other (more adventurous) groups.

    The hinterlands of Morocco are dirt-poor, and facilities can be basic, but everyone we met was super-friendly, and riding through small villages saying Hi (“As-Salame Alaykum – bonjour” seems to be the greeting of choice) and high-fiving school kids was great fun.

    A small word of caution, depending on your proclivities, in 8 days we managed to get 2 beers. Its a “moderate Muslim country” and whilst alcohol exists, its not that easy to find. For instance I saw no hint of it in Imlil, and Google suggested the closest bar was 35 miles away 😉

    HTH, any more details needed – fire away.

    LR

    doris1
    Full Member

    La Palma in the Canaries is well set up for mountain biking. Been in December for the last 4 years (before Covid) and every time it was perfect riding weather, sunshine, blue skies and around 22 degrees. About a 4 hour flight from Manchester. Not sure how the trails have been affected by the recent volcano but there are still quite a few companies operating out there. It’s very popular with German and Swiss mountain bikers…hardly any Brits.

    Just to add, the best riding in Morocco is in the Atlas mountains and it will be cold up there in Jan/Feb.

    stwhannah
    Full Member

    @sharkattack it won’t be particularly warm at the time of year you’re looking at, but don’t discount southern Utah for the future on the basis of cost. It is possible to pick up cheapish flights to Vegas from Manchester if you’re flexible and want to see Virgin. Phoenix would be an option too if you fancied Arizona. Maybe set up some price alerts on flights and see what comes up? Once you’re there it’s fairly easy to keep costs down if you don’t mind roughing it a bit sleeping in a car/tent. It’s not like in the uk where you need an actual waterproof quality option – cheapo/thrift shop option will cut it.

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