Looking for a friendly, warm, beautiful place to ride your bike this winter? Let me suggest Guatemala, land of volcanoes and jungles, and a ton of amazing single track. Justin Olsen and I recently travelled down here for a week to ride, camp, swim, and take in the Guatemalan culture. We put together this quick video which captures the feel of the trip pretty well, and definitely makes me want to return as soon as possible. I'll let the photos and video do the rest of the talking, it's an amazing place. Thanks to Diamondback Bikes
for helping make it happen, I rode my Release 3 on this trip with my own build kit.
Video and photos by Justin Olsen @justinolsen
, riding by Eric Porter
There's only one way to make sure a bike has been properly built up, and that's riding wheelies around town!
Waiting for the bike shop to open to finish up a couple things on the bike!
Riding into our camp spot on Volcán Acatenango, in the clouds.
One of the coolest places I've ever camped. We were woken up every couple hours by Volcán de Fuego blasting off, we were able to watch lava roll down it's sides, although never quick enough to get the camera set up in time. Every time it blasted our Guatemalan friend Welber would shout "Laaaaaaavvvvaaaaaaa Aaaaammiiiiiiiiigggoooooosssss!" which soon became our favorite thing to yell to each other.
Our friend Welber. Laaaavvvvvaaaa Aaaammmiiiggooosss!!!!
We woke up at 4am to hike to the summit in 33 degree F temps with clouds and rain/snow, hoping it would clear for an amazing sunrise.
Spoiler alert, it never cleared, and we were nearly hypothermic by the time we returned to camp, shivering uncontrollably!
Cruising through Antigua on the way to our next riding spot.
El Zur bike park is deep in the jungle on the side of a volcano. Also staying with protocol, the only safe way to cross a bridge is on one wheel.
Welcome to the jungle!
The trails here were not made for riding bikes, that's just an added benefit! The locals were all excited to see us, and were very welcoming. I think mountain biking will be a nice boost to the economy of the more remote parts of Guatemala in the future, as more people come here to ride bikes.
Heading into Lake Atitlán to wrap up our trip.
Our accommodations at Lake Atitlán, possibly the coolest place I've ever stayed.
Hey everyone, I have a very important announcement. CANNONBALL!!!!!
Check out the rest of the pictures from the trip at Justin's gallery below!https://www.pinkbike.com/u/justinolsen/album/Guatemala-2017/