MONTAÑAS VACÍAS BIKEPACKING

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21-29 AUGUST 2021

TRIP OVERVIEW

There is a region of Spain so dramatic and striking, its lands could easily be mistaken for those of the iconic, majestic US National Parks. Yet unlike the natural American wonders, these Spanish landscapes, surrounded by the earth-tone hues of the Montes Universales all the way south to the source of the emerald-green Tajo River, can be easily reached without having to take an intercontinental flight. As a matter of fact, getting there only takes an hour and a half from Italy.

In addition to the medieval history, evident in the 12th century castles of Zafra (as seen in Game of Thrones) and Peracense, there’s the incomparably amazing Spanish cuisine—all overlooked by the village of Albarracín, considered a national monument, winner of a Gold Medal of Merit for Fine Arts and a candidate for UNESCO World Heritage status.

We discovered all this thanks to the genius of Ernesto Pastor, creator and founder of the Montañas Vacías bikepacking route. Anyone who meets Ernesto soon knows that his philosophy towards adventure is truly superlative, almost heroic, as he invites everyone to visit these lands and experience something great, in whatever form suits them best.

With Ernesto’s blessing, we want to propose an adventure along part of his 700 km route: an unbeatable bikepacking experience with a knowledgeable guide, good food and a fine roof over your head every night.

Of course, for this expedition to be truly successful, it is absolutely necessary to create a strong team spirit amongst all our travelers. No rider will ever be left alone or find themselves individually facing difficulty for any reason. It will be the responsibility not only of the guides, but also of the individual participants to help problem solve throughout the duration of the trip, working together to make the most of our adventure as a team. It will be an unforgettable experience and journey, but also a unique opportunity to educate ourselves on group consciousness and the ability to share—be it joy, fatigue, planning, organization, coordination, defeat or success.

And in this case, success will not be defined as arriving at the final destination but having set off and having done our best to arrive all together.

Refund and cancellation

Where, for whatever reason, one person is obliged to withdraw, the person must give written notice to Project Adventure Cycling.

Refund will be calculated with this penalty:

– Within 45 days from date of departure the penalty fare is 10% of the total cost of the trip.

– Within 30 days from departure the penalty fare is 30% of the total cost of the trip.

– Within 21 days from departure the penalty fare is 60% of the total cost of the trip.

– Within 14 days from departure the penalty fare is 75 % of the total cost of the trip.

– After this date no refund will be given.

No refunds for those who will not show at the start or withdraw during the course of the tour.
No refunds for those who could not make the tour due to lack or inaccuracy of the personal travel documents (i.e Visa or Passport). Traveler understands that some destinations pose more risk than other destinations due to weather conditions, political conditions and the geography of the region. Traveler acknowledges that factors such as, but not limited to, weather conditions, landslides, floods, flight cancelations or delays, strikes, labor troubles, failure of power, restrictive governmental laws or regulations, riots, insurrection, war or other reason of a like nature not the fault of Project Adventure Cycling (hereinafter “Force Majeure Event”) can hinder, delay or even prevent the Traveler’s ability to make or complete the trip.

Traveler acknowledges that the Project Adventure Cycling shall not be liable to Traveler for any delay or cancelation of the trip due to a Force Majeure Event. Traveler shall not be entitled to a refund or any other payment for damages from the Project Adventure Cycling in the event that the trip is cancelled or delayed due to a Force Majeure Event. Please note that we are never responsible for any airfare ticket expenses.

COVID 19

In the event that you are unable to fly due to COVID 19 restrictions because of a declared state of emergency, PA Cycling, SL, guarantees:

RETURN OF QUOTE* (Except for expenses incurred up to the time of cancellation of the trip)

QUOTA FREEZE UNTIL NEXT DEPARTURE*.

FEE FREEZE UNTIL THE DEPARTURE OF ANY OTHER TRIP ORGANISED BY PA-CYCLING, SL*.

* The above conditions ARE NOT VALID in the case of a positive individual.

The price includes

– Bike guides from PA Cycling (specific number of guides depends on the number of participants)

– 3 nights’ stay in a Hotel in Teruel (breakfast and welcome/reception dinner included)

– All hotels/hostels during all 6 stages

– All dinners and breakfasts during the 6 stages

– All lunches/snacks during all stages

– Travel insurance coverage

The price does not include

– Return airfare and baggage fees, bike equipment

– Lunches in Teruel or where not expressly specified

– Excursions, extra activities

– Additional costs in case of logistical changes (extra transfers etc.)

– Anything not included in “The price includes” section.

  • Dates
    21-29 August 2021
  • Duration
    9 days
  • Stages
    6
  • Length
    412 km
  • Elevation
    9130 m
  • Difficulty
    Medium
  • Price
    1.650 €

THE TRACK

THE STAGES

STAGE 01 – Teruel – Albarracín – 54 km | 1200 m  

Our journey begins in Teruel and our first destination is the village of Albarracín, considered one of the most beautiful villages in Spain and a National Monument. The Montes Universales surround us with their well-maintained forest tracks.

STAGE 02 – Albarracín – Griegos – 67 km | 1900 m

From Albarracín, we start the day with a very demanding climb, despite being only two kilometers long. But don’t worry, the view will be worth the effort. Today we cross some of the densest pine forests in Europe in a continuous up and down until we reach Griegos, where we will spend the night.

STAGE 03 – Griegos – Peralejos de las Truchas (Bruce Springsteen’s hometown) – 79,5 km | 1960 m

We start the day cycling through the Dehesas de Griegos to the source of the Tajo River, a quiet start that will take us through lonely forests and beautiful villages to our destination.

Editor’s note: Peralejo de las Truchas has an adopted son by the name of Bruce Springsteen. We will tell you the story.

STAGE 04 – Peralejos de las Truchas – Molina de Aragon – 79,8 km | 2.350 m

We leave Peralejos de las Truchas through its jagged mountains under the watchful eye of local vultures. We continue along the emerald-green Tajo River, which on more than one occasion allows us to take a refreshing dip. This whole stage is extraordinarily beautiful. In the late afternoon, we reach Molina de Aragón, where our hotel and a fresh cervecita await us.

ETAPA 05 – Molina de Aragón – Zafra Castle and Peracense Castle – 66,1 km | 1070 m

We begin the penultimate stage and leave the Tajo to throw ourselves into medieval history, linking two important castles: Zafra and Perasence. Then, our route will wind through the typical Castilian landscape, warmed by the summer sun. After visiting the second stronghold at Perasence, a beautiful descent will take us back to our hotel.

STAGE 06 – Peracense Castle – Teruel – 65 km | 650 m

One last quiet day between ruins, plateaus and a few villages links Peracense with Teruel—a stage dedicated to savoring the last treasures of the rich and welcoming region of Aragon. We will do everything we can to inspire your love and appreciation of the amazing Montañas Vacías, born of the brilliant mind and pure spirit of our dear Ernesto Pastor; this stage was specifically designed by him for us.

Once we arrive at the hotel in Teruel:

We will pack up our bikes and enjoy a free day, followed by a goodbye dinner and night at the hotel. The next day, after breakfast, our services end. Transfers to the various airports are not included but we are happy to help arrange them.

YOUR GUIDE

Willy Mulonia

Willy Mulonia

Founder & President

Willy Mulonia, expert lonely traveler and cyclist for more than 30 years. He made several solo expeditions, but the most important is without a doubt the 28,640 bike trip from Ushuaia (Patagonia) to Prudhoe Bay (Alaska). He raced in the Crocodile Trophy (Australia) in ’98 and the famous IditaBike (Alaska) in 1999, 2000, 2018, 2019 & 2020 as well as many other mountain bike stage races all over the world. In 2003 he founded the bike travel agency Progetto Avventura, now renamed Project Adventure Cycling. In 2010, with the help of all the team of PA-Cycling he created the Mongolia Bike Challenge, one of the most important MTB stage race in the world. Today you can find him guiding most the tour offered by Project Adventure Cycling.

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