Last month, Joel popped up and offered me a place on his holiday down to Malaga, Spain with Roost. A holiday to sunny Spain in wet and windy December? Oh, go on then. We instantly started scheming ideas for a video and looked into possible spots.. ie. watching Not2Bad, as all the local Malaga trails were used and shot (very well) for that film. We settled into Spanish life for a week and eyed up the best corners, gaps, natural whoop sections and gas2flats, as well as fully taking advantage of the brilliantly cheap economy every lunchtime. I even got to ride my bike every day. Belting.
First of all we checked out La Zubia, a stone's throw from Granada and not too far from Sierra Nevada, Europe's most southern Ski Resort. Also know as Minnaar's test track, its a fast and marble-y track dropping into river bed gullies such as this one, with hips and lips galore. Joel took full advantage!
If you've seen the Not2Bad film, then you'll see a lot of that movie is shot in an old housing/leisure complex that is completely abandoned. And it's not exactly hard to gain access to. Once we got in, it was a complete playground with jumps and transfers everywhere. The lips needed a bit of work beforehand, but nothing the Spanish sun couldn't handle. An old guy walking his 6 goats along the ridge stood and watched the riding for a good hour. We thought he'd call the rozzers, but turns out he just wanted to see what was going on. Thanks, Spain, for being so chill.
I think the locals should make this place into a legit Bike Park. It's phenomenal. Here Joel drops a leg over the big quarter pipe whilst tanning his left side.
About 20ft out, 30ft down at a guess? Well, either way, it's nuts. Step onto the roof, completely blind and hope like hell you're in line with the landing. Joel was scared for this one.. it took a good few run-ins before he committed. He hit the Loosefest jumps first run down to give a bit of perspective. We have massive respect for Semenuks flip nac off this roof.
This is probably the most Spanish image I've ever taken. And I'm not used to so much blue sky either. You could easily move into these properties.. they can't be more than 8,9,10 years old? Great condition.. just left to sit and rot. If I were on the streets, I know where I'd go.
Joel sends some style from the blind roof through the Spanish sky. “If it were in a bike park you'd do it any day, but because it's off someone's house, it's kinda sketchy”.
The man himself, ready to take your order from his poolside bar (yes, that's what this is), along with his steed – the Banshee Legend.
The features just keep on appearing, and they're all amazingly photogenic. We need more riding spots in abandoned leisure estates! Here Joel hits one of the smaller features, the blind drop out of the house.
We then moved onto the hip lines, that nestle beside the property in the valley. Unfortunately, the largest hip had a pond in the run in (I don't think drainage was a top priority for the builders) so we shot the other line, a 40ft step down into a similarly sized hip. Fair play Casey Brown for sending it and R-Dog for 450'ing it. It's great to see features from other films, it definitely ups the respect.
Clicking the table and floating over the hip. I know there doesn't look like there's much on the hill behind, but there's a run into two step downs and then into this hip. Only took an hour or so to get running.. so if you're local, go ride them!
The most clicked table of the day. Granted, the fisheye is helping but that is an awesome shape from the Somerset lad. I already want to go back to this spot!
Big thanks to Stans No Tubes for making it all happen, to Roost MTB for the swish hospitality, Archie and Sanders for showing us the spots, and to Joel for once again risking his life.
Video/Photo/Words – Caldwell Visuals