Winter is here

Winter has arrived, well, what we call winter in Barcelona.
Temperatures don't usually drop under 0ºC, but it is windy and humid and it doesn't get much higher than 10ºC.

Wind means that some of our favorite trails see some trees fall down, usually at the exit of a fast corner! Humid means that some already sketchy downhills get even scarier!
But it also means that when the sun shines, and it usually does, the trails grip much more that the sandy surface we are use to. Take a look at the brown color, far away from the summer white color of our local trails.

How do you wear for this kind of weather?
If you don't start very early the sun has already made things warmer. You can ride shorts, an underwear layer (short sleeve) and a winter jacket. If it is colder you can use a mid layer, better if it is short sleeved too. You will soon heat up as you start climbing, and the downhills are not fast and long enough to freeze you.


Castellbisbal Night Ride

300 riders showed up for the traditional Castellbisbal mountain bike night ride.
Nocturna Castellbisbal MTB

For those of you not familiar with Barcelona, Castellbisbal is a small town 20' away from downtown Barcelona on the way to Monserrat (East of BCN). It is surrounded by canyons not really pretty but crisscrossed with lots of beautiful singletracks.

Despite the horrible weather on Friday the trails were in really good condition.
The Night Ride is famous for the demanding singletrack many of which are given names of cookies brands (galletas) just because in spanish when you fall we said you have been given a "cookie".

We already knew the trails so we wanted to be up front for the first cookie, a very sketchy downhill singletrack. We passed it confidently thanks to powerful lights and brave riders in front of us.
Soon after we passed someone failed a the traffic jams started.

We found ourselves alone in the dark next to the river until we got to the tunnel.
What seemed to be a GPS mistake was actually an 800 mts abandoned tunnel that took us to the first climb.

Then back to the riverside for a long long time until the ups and downs started.
The trails were great, only problem was the cold and the many times times we crossed a riverbed where the water was freezing!

There were at least three places to refill with water and grab something to eat.
The track was perfectly marked, there were people in every crossroads showing the way, there were catadioptrics scattered in the narrow singletracks to reassure us, there were danger signs in the downhills and chicken ways for those not so sure.

40 kms of fun and pain, almost three hours of good riding in the dark and a good diner at the end.

You can see a some video of the first ans last downhill here. It sure looks easier with daylight!

Cookie Singletracks 1
Cookie Singletrack 2
Cookie Singletrack 3