Photo Story: Exploring Pilisurco Trails in Ecuador

Jul 17, 2020
by Mauro Cepeda  

Pilisurco hill is located near Ambato in Ecuador, with a maximum altitude of 4508 meters above sea level. To approach the summit from where all the trails start you have plenty of options from paved to gravel roads, by car shuttling from Ambato takes around 20 minutes and by bicycle around 1:30 to 2 hours because of the steepness of the climb. It offers a big variety of terrain from muddy and loose rock technical segments, fast and dry sections and big jumps at the bottom in the downhill track.

Approaching the summit(trail heads), awesome landscape views will emerge.

At first, Pilisurco will deliver an amazing grassland with fast, steep, muddy sections and of course breathtaking views.

A “rock river” will follow the grassland.
If you´re wondering why they call it "rock river".

Surely you’ll be riding above the clouds at 4508 meters above sea level.

Our host was José Carlos Espin Reyes known as "Doc" in Ecuador and Latin America.He has been a key part of the mountain bike scene due to his work promoting Mtb and tourism to preserve the natural habitat while building a mountain bike community in Ecuador. A clear example is Pilisurco where he´s constantly searching new trails for the community and also working on the existing ones.

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The riders enjoying the fast and loose terrain in the DH track.

Ambato is a must-visit if you are in Ecuador, because of the plenty variety of trails along with the proximity between them and to the city plus the beautiful landscape scenery that Ambato will not ever fail to deliver. Also due to the epic ride Pilisurco will be a highlight of any Andean MTB trip. Is highly recommended to hire a guide, to size your time and avoid any incidents like getting lost in the massive Ecuadorian Paramo.


  • 9 1
 Good job guys! Looking forward to ride those trails when comming visit Ecuador!
  • 3 0
 Did a guided mountain bike tour in Ecuador a couple years ago and it was amazing. It was insane to start riding at 17k feet on a volcano and then drop into a rainforest in the same day. Definitely want to go back there and ride these trails!
  • 2 0
 you are always welcome, to this true paradise of the mtb, the best trails, with adequate security!! Contact Hambatu Bike Trips to Know more about Ecuador bike Trails.
  • 1 0
 Great photos. Is that a derailleur guard on that cannondale? Anyone one have any info on it? It's not very clear in the photos, I can't tell if it's diy or what.
  • 2 0
 Yes, it's made by chicken parts.
  • 1 0
 El doc!! Try following him down the cangahua! That mountain is a must. 10km of varied terrain. Go visit! Good job oon thi!
  • 3 0
 our land has unique trails they have to know
  • 2 0
 Buena dog buen reportaje hermosos senderos vale la pena conocerlos
  • 2 0
 increíble, esperamos estar pronto por allá!! saludos muchachos
  • 1 0
 Lived in Ecua back in 2003 and always have wanted to go back with a badass bike. This next year?
  • 1 0
 Yeaaahhhh!!! Ecuador MTB!!
  • 1 0
 buena amigos exelente historia!! ke fotasas
  • 1 0
 Eso se ve buenazo

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