MTB Ainsa! XC & Enduro Riding at "Zona Zero" in the Spanish Pyrenees.

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MTB Ainsa! XC & Enduro Riding at "Zona Zero" in the Spanish Pyrenees.
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Posted: Jul 31, 2019 at 14:14 Quote
After weeks of very hot temps, looking north towards France and some pretty heavy weather!

Some rain to settle the dust would be nice :-)

Looking North . . . .

Posted: Aug 6, 2019 at 11:16 Quote
Riding along the bank of the Rio Ara towards Ainsa . . . .

I'm riding between 8pm and sundown to avoid the heat!

Heading towards Ainsa . . . .

Posted: Aug 7, 2019 at 22:38 Quote
Evening training ride from Boltaña up to Guaso and back on singletrack.

I have some guiding coming up and I need to stay in shape!

Posted: Aug 9, 2019 at 22:41 Quote
The track that runs alongside the Rio Ara between Boltaña and Ainsa.

I rarely see more than the odd jogger or occasionally some older people walking along here. More often than not I see no one.

Ainsa old town is up on he hill and behind it the Pyrenees. . . . .

Posted: Aug 23, 2019 at 9:13 Quote
Climbing up the singletrack on Zona Zero Route 18 between the villages of Margurgued and Guaso you come across this skull …

Posted: Aug 26, 2019 at 22:31 Quote
Guiding this week with Grant & Carol from New Zealand.

Yesterday we did one of my Techy XC routes, today Zona Zero Route 7…
Grant is on a beautiful Bronson …

They did the “Jo'burg to Sea” this year and enjoyed it…

Posted: Sep 9, 2019 at 22:37 Quote
Grant & Carol climbing to the top of the Partara.... another nice afternoon of guiding :-)

Posted: Sep 11, 2019 at 23:32 Quote
Guided Brandy from the US for a day last week.

Beautiful hot day when we started. Over the first hill and we heard thunder in the distance. Up on the plateau we just caught the edge of the rain and took refuge in one of the many old stone shelters we have here. Towards the end of the ride as we headed back towards the car the weather cleared again and we finished in sunshine.

The car meanwhile, despite never being more than a few km's away from us, saw no rain at all.

Such is the weather in the mountains!

Posted: Sep 16, 2019 at 8:31 Quote
Met up with a visiting fellow Brit at the weekend and guided him around some of our Zona Zero Singletracks.

Leo lived in Cape Town for a few years as a teenager, and I visited there several times when I lived in Jo'burg - so we had lots to talk about!

We also had some interesting chats regarding ideas for advertising & promoting ourselves here in Spain and we're going to keep in touch now and help each other out a bit.

Always good to share ideas and offer help if you can. It's one of the things that makes the world go around :-)

Posted: Sep 26, 2019 at 8:45 Quote
Had some visitors from the UK earlier this week.

Simon has been following our progress on-line pretty much since we started and wanted to catch up with us while he and some friends were riding the trails here at Zona Zero.

We did a ride XC from Ainsa up to Guaso so that they could see our "Build Project". Mrs Bonus met us up there and we showed them around.

It's always reassuring when people tell us how much they love our location and our plans for the place. They've promised to come back and support us when we're done . . . great stuff.

Posted: Oct 3, 2019 at 11:12 Quote
About 6 months ago I started helping Dale, who lives in the Philippines, to plan a visit to Ainsa to ride the Zona Zero trails.

I helped him arrange car hire & accommodation, we became friends on FB and finally last Friday, after reading and commenting on my MTB posts for months, he and his two friends Anthony & Tweed arrived and I guided them for 5 days.

The Philippines only has two seasons - a dry season and a wet season (Monsoon) and averages 90% humidity every day - so the hot and dry weather we have here was very different for them.

They are used to riding on dirt (or in mud during the wet season) so the rocks here took some getting used to, but they all handled everything here very well.

Some pics from day one - we did a warm up on the singletrack through the Badlands and then rode XC over to Guaso, via Boltana, to see our Build Project. . . . .

Posted: Oct 4, 2019 at 23:59 Quote
On Day 1 we did Ainsa, Boltana, Margudued and Guaso.

On Day 2 Dale, Ants, Tweed & I did Ainsa, El Pueyo de Araguas, El Soto & Usana . . . .

It was another beautiful day with a picnic break up at the highest point of the ride :-)

Posted: Oct 7, 2019 at 1:16 Quote
Day 3 with the guys from the Philippines and we drove out to Santa Maria de Buil to ride a variation of Zona Zero route 19. I start the route, which is circular, at the halfway point - so I do the second half first and then the first half last..... I think it rides better that way around!

The first part of the ride is mostly nice flowy singletrack, then there's some climbing - fire road and technical singletrack. Stop for a quick sandwich at the Ermita de Santa Barbara and then through the trees and out onto "The Balcony" from where you get to see some amazing views of the Pyrenees.....

It was a great day out, as always. . . . .

Posted: Oct 10, 2019 at 9:38 Quote
Day 4 was e-bike day!

A couple of my visitors from the Philippines wanted to try out e-bikes while they were here. Dale and Ant were going to hire e-bikes while Tweed and I rode normal bikes . . . but then they talked Tweed into giving it a go, so they hired an e-bike each and one for me too! How cool is that!?

My first time on an e-bike and also my first time on an Enduro style bike. I ride a Specialized Epic 29'er - which is more of a Cross Country Racing Mountain Bike - it handles pretty much everything I want to ride here, but I was interested to give the Enduro frame a go.

We went out for 4 hrs and rode every steep technical climb I could find.... and we had a blast. All the climbs we did I've done before on my own bike - the two differences I found with the e-bike were that you climb much faster, naturally, but also - with it being an Enduro bike rather than a Cross Country bike, you don't have to watch where you're going. When I climb on my bike I have to "pick my line", on the Enduro bike you just hit every rock, step or root head-on and you can get over it.

On the downside, the e-bike only helps you up to a certain speed - on these bikes the sweet spot was 26.4km/h. So on the flat I rode more slowly than I normally would. Anything above 26.4km/h and the motor stops helping you - then it gets real hard real quick!

One of us ran out of battery towards the end, but thankfully within a couple of km's from the end of the ride. Again, with a dead battery the bike becomes a really heavy piece of kit to keep moving....

Overall it was a great experience and I can see why people like them and if you want to, you can still get a good workout!

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