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Spessart – 08/2018 – English version


Spessart


panorama
driving skills
endurance

One Saturday morning Daniel was about to go biking as one of his neighbors approached him. During the chat she told him about biking in the Hessian Spessart. Up to then Daniel was biking in the Taunus (northwest of Frankfurt) mostly. Based on the recommendation he decided to give the Spessart a try.

The trail-business WhatsApp group was reactivated and we invited some friends from the area around Frankfurt to join in. Besides Dustin, the Spessart-biking-group grew by Andi, Georg and another Daniel. We asked Alex from the Bike School Bikeflow if he could guide us on his hometrails. He agreed immediately and we were ready to go!

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Planning

In the planning phase, we had great support from Alex, who suggested trails and accommodation spots in the area of the Hessian Spessart. There was no complicated planning for us this time, as we were living in the area. The only thing we did is organize a campervan from roadsurfer for the long weekend, which turned out being a great decision.

As we were biking with many people our packing list came in handy. Moreover, the area in the Hessian Spessart has well infrastructure that we decided to take only the most important things and buy drinks and food on our way or even between our day trips.

Best travelling time

In general, you can biking in the Spessart all year round, if the conditions allow. The FlowTrail Bad Orb opens from April to October and is free to use for everybody. In wintertime or during bad weather conditions it gets cold, wet and muddy. It is appreciated to spare the trails to not ruin them.

The opening hours can be found here.

Getting there

By car:

The easiest way to get to the trails of the Hessian Spessart is by car.

Driving on the Autobahn A7 direction Fulda from the north or south simply change to the A66. Coming from Frankfurt enter the A66 directly. Depending on where you wanna start just use your car gps or maps.

By train / bus:

Reaching the Spessart trails by public transport is a bit more challenging. Search for a connection to Wächtersbach station with DeutscheBahn. From there you can take a bus to Bad Orb. The rest you have to go by bike following the signs to Flowtrail Haseltal.

By Plane:

If you are from outside of Germany take a connection Frankfurt am Main or Aschaffenburg. From there choose one of the above mentioned modes to get to the Hessian Spessart.

Accommodation

There are many options to spend the night in the Hessian Spessart. Campsites, guesthouses/airBnBs or hotels can be found in almost every town. Hence, it depends on your budget if you spend the night in a tent or in a 5-star hotel.

We chose a rental VW Bulli campervan from roadsurfer. This allowed us to explore multiple biking venues over the long weekend.

Spessart

A selection of many mountain bike friendly hosts in the region can be found here.

Language

Well, you are in Germany – even thought most Germans perceive the Hessian honor as a foreign language. 😉

Food

No matter by which village or town you visit, there will always be a tavern or supermarket with delicious food.
On the first evening we went to Jagdhaus Haselruhe, where we had regional dishes and fresh regional game!

In Rossbach there is a small hidden café called Café Koller. You have to know where to find it, to enjoy amazing handmade cakes and pies. Which piece of cake is the best you have to find out by yourself!

Spessart

Another good choice is the Gasthaus Wiesbuettsee located at the L2905 road. You can power up before the last uphill followed by the long trail into the valley.

After our tour in Roßbach we were planning to prepare some pasta on the camp stove. The only thing in our way was a delicious kebab retaurant? To our suprise it had very tasty dishes – more like a restaurant and not only kebab.

For our next visit, Alex recommended to have the best burger in Spessart at The Orbärs. We have not been there, but you can trust Alex! 😉

Trips

Day 1:

First track: The Horseshoe Trail. A section maintained by the local bike club “Schlappe Waden e.V.” – translating to weak calves. Starting at the parking lot it is only a short uphill to entry of the track. There is a second entry a bit higher up the hill leading you onto the same track in the end.

The Horseshoe Trail starts out as a singletrack with relatively steep sections and a few curves. During the course the trail it becomes more technical with hand crafted obstacles. After crossing a forest road the track leads you into a section with small and medium jumps, a few gaps and some small adjacent curves. In case you are a beginner it is better to not jump the gaps right away. But those who are more advanced will have a lot fun here. After crossing the forest path for the second time, the trail runs flatter. Riding with high speed you are going to love this part of the trail! Before you reach the end of the Horesehoe trail there is a wooden ramp you can drop.

Going uphill again on a forest road you can get back up and start over again!

Spessart

Day 2:

We woke up by two loud bangs that shook our bulli. The sound of a supersonic aircraft – or the beginning of the zombie apocalypse? Well, it turned out not being the second idea.

Unfortunately, during our breakfast it started to rain, so we extended the breakfast until noon. Around 12 o’clock it stopped raining and we jumped onto our bikes. But not our own bikes – Alex brought e-mountain bikes from NOX  for us. Our first time cycling with battery support. Hence, we started a one day test drive on the “FlowTrail Bad Orb“! With electrical support the way up the hill seemed not that steep any more !

As soon as we arrived at the top, it started to rain heavily again. After about half an hour of rain, we where finally able to start our short descend. The ground was still slightly damp, so you had to be very careful with the wet roots. Following the 500 m long beginners track down to the parking lot we enjoyed small obstacles and nice curves. Perfect for beginners to learn biking slowly and safely.

Spessart
After this warm up for our batteries we cycled up the same way again (MTB-Route 5/19 – Beilsteinschleife with a section on the Eselsweg). We followed a relaxed natural section to the entrance of the “DonBosco-Trail” going downhill about 4 km. This trail runs along the contour line of the mountain taking xou over smaller and larger ramps. Important rule: don´t loose speed! Perfect area for the e-mountain bikes!

At the end of the “DonBosco Trail” we crossed the road and turned straight into the “Winterberg Trail”, one of the tougher singletracks in Bad Orb. The ground changed to more rocky conditions, being towel-wide with almost constant slope. Through fast bends and a few steps, it went down in the direction of Bad Orb. Great biking!

On the “Route 19” we pedaled to the parking lot Haselruhe. Luckily, there were a few short downhills on the way to play with.

We had a great day and our first ride on e-mountain bikes. The bikes give an amazing support uphill. Still, going downhill you have great control. Due to the weight and the low center of gravity they literally stick to the ground. One thing we found really cool is that you can push through light uphill sections as if you were riding downhill. Hence, the DonBosco Trail felt like a downhill single track. Unfortunately, Daniel´s battery was empty after only 35 km, due to the extra weight of the filming equipm,ent he had to carry. Well, that is what he says! 😉

Day 3:

Back to natural muscle power we started the day with an ascend. Our destination: the “Haseltal Trail” – a built trail going 2.6 km down into the Haseltal. The singletrack starts relatively flat with many adjacent curves. Soon, it becomes straight-lined with several jumps in a row. In the course of the trail, the terrain becomes steeper and steeper, so you have to push less and the bike roll.

Parallel to the forest road, which we cranked up at the beginning, the track offers jumps, open curves and sometimes adjacent curves. After crossing the forest road we entered the last section of the track enjoying a biking-park feeling. There you find larger adjacent curves and natural jumps with good air time.

Spessart

Next stop: Roßbach!  This year Roßbach was the venue for the Enduro-One, a mountain bike racing series for everyone.

Currently, there is activity in Roßbach to release permits for an official enduro downhill track – maybe even this year.

Alex´ buddy Ralf joined our group. As a local mountain biker and organizer of the Enduro-One he knows every rock by name. He was the one who showed us the secret Café Koller you can read above in the “food section” of our article.

During our ascend Ralf told us about the river Schwarzbach running in parallel to our path.  We learned that the area had a lot of mining activity in history. Therefore, the name Schwarzbach (black brook) derives from the fact it used to spoiled and poisonous by all the waste material from the metal mining. The path we were cycling up the hill used to be an old railway line of the mining companies, which explained the continuous and quite pleasant slope uphill. If you want to learn more about the hsitory of the area you can stop by the information boards all over the area. Hence, this day trip was not only for the body, but also for the mind 😉

Spessart

At that point of time we did not know there was a mean uphill section waiting for us. The last meters up to the Wiesbütt was a damn steep ramp. Hence, we rested a bit at the Wiesbüttsee before we tackled the last meters on altitude. Finally, we entered a forest road going down the hill. It slowly changed into small singletrack following the contour line of the mountain, slowly becoming steeper. The natural track is has a few small obstacles like old tree stumps leading you to the mini Bike Park Rosengarten in Roßbach.

What we learned

E-Mountain bikes – an experience worth riding on. You can cover more distance  with less effort, allowing you to focus on the downhill sections rather than waisting your power uphill.

We only managed to cycle about 35km with electrical support, due to the fact we stopped a lot for filming and taking pictures. In addition we had to carry a lot of weight on camera equipment up the hill resulting in a much faster discharge of the batteries. Going downhill the NOX bikes behave almost like a normal bike. You can easily explore your limits on the singletrack!

Moreover, we learned that the hessian Spessart offers way more great biking than expected. The area has a lot of different tracks to offer. For beginners as well as for experienced riders.

E-mountain bikes are a great option for riders, who like to explore many spots in one region during a day. You do not waste your energy on the uphills and with good riding skills you can master almost every obstacle you can ride on a normal bike.

Besides the mountain biking, we learned that staying in a campervan is a cool way to explore different spots in short period of time. The VW California was equipped with everything we needed, from a stove to a shower. You can make the most out of your biking day, starting at dawn and coming back “home” at sunset.

Costs

Costs for one person:

For our long weekend with 4 people in the roadsurfer campervan:

~ 150 € / p.P.

including food, drinks and campsite costs.

Our conclusion

We were surprised by the variety of different trails in the Hessian Spessart. For sure, the difficulty of the tracks are not comparable to those on the Azores or in the Alps. Anyways, we had a lot of fun and did not even grasp the full potential of the Spessart in only four days.

If you come from the Frankfurt area, the Spessart is a great bike region. In our opinion the Spessart is a perfect spot to start the season. If the weather in the Alps is not yet suitable for biking, you can have great start for mountain biking in the Spessart.

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Spessart – German Version https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/spessart-german-version/ https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/spessart-german-version/#respond Sat, 15 Sep 2018 16:41:00 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?post_type=portfolio&p=6340


Spessart – 08/2018 – German Version


Spessart


panorama
driving skills
endurance

Als Daniel sich eines Samstagsmorgen in voller Mountainbike-Ausrüstung auf den Weg zum Biken machen wollte, traf er im Treppenhaus auf seine Nachbarin. Während der Unterhaltung kamen sie auf den Spessart, der ja quasi vor Daniels Haustür liegt. Zu dieser Zeit war Daniel meistens im Taunus (Nordwestlich von Frankfurt) unterwegs. Daniels Nachbarin empfahl ihm mal den Spessart zu testen.

Also wurde die alte WhatsApp-Gruppe von unserem Norwegen Trip aus dem letzten Jahr reaktiviert und durch ein paar Freunde von Daniel aus dem Frankfurter Raum erweitert.

So begleiteten uns diesmal Andi, Georg und noch ein Daniel, sowie Alex von der Bikeschule Bikeflow, der sich im Spessart auskennt, wie in der eigenen Westentasche.

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Planung

Bei der Planung hatten wir Unterstützung von Alex, der sich um die Tourenplanung gekümmert hat und uns durch seine Heimat, den Spessart, geguidet hat.

Wir mussten demnach nur unsere Anreise planen und zum vereinbarten Treffpunkt kommen.

Aber etwas Neues wollten wir dieses Mal schon noch ausprobieren. Also haben wir kurzerhand einen VW California Bulli von roadsurfer bekommen, um das Bike-Wochenende in einem Campervan zu verbringen. Dabei geholfen hat uns die Spessart-Tourismus, Alex und natürlich die Jungs und Mädels von roadsurfer. Wir haben noch all unsere Logos auf den Van geklebt und los ging es mit der “Promo-Tour” in den Spessart!

Abgesehen davon hatten wir diesmal nicht so viel Aufwand bei der Planung. Wir haben inzwischen unsere Packliste so optimiert, dass wir nicht alles zwei Mal mitnehmen müssen. Aufgrund der guten Infrastruktur haben wir die meisten Einkäufe vor Ort gemacht. So konnten wir auch noch immer Essen und Getränke holen, wenn die Vorräte zur Neige gingen, was doch erstaunlich schnell gehen kann!

Beste Reisezeit

Generell kann man im Spessart das ganze Jahr über biken, wenn die Bedingungen es zulassen. Den Link zum Wetterbericht ersparen wir euch an dieser Stelle.

Der FlowTrail Bad Orb ist von April bis Oktober geöffnet, es gibt aber keinen Eingang, an dem man ein Ticket ziehen muss. Gewünscht ist, dass die Trails im Winter geschont werden, ebenso bei schlechter Witterung im Sommer. Die Öffnungszeiten findet ihr hier.

Wie kommt man hin

Mit dem Auto:

Am besten geht es tatsächlich mit dem Auto. Zum Beispiel aus Richtung Norden oder Süden über die A7 bis Fulda und dann auf die A66. Von Frankfurt kommend geht es ebenso auf die A66. Je nachdem welches Ziel ihr als erstes anfahren wollt geht es dann noch etwas über die Landstraße. So erreicht am schnellsten alle Orte im Spessart.

Mit Bus und Bahn:

Mit den öffentlichen Verkehrsmitteln gestaltet sich dies schon etwas aufwändiger. Mit der Bahn kommt man bis zum Bahnhof Wächtersbach. Dann gilt es in den Bus nach Bad Orb zu steigen und von dort mit dem Bike der Ausschilderung zum Flowtrail ins Haseltal zu folgen.

Unterkünfte

Im hessischen Spessart habt ihr eine Vielzahl an Möglichkeiten unterzukommen. Je nach Urlaubskasse geht es auf den Campingplatz, eine Pension/AirBnB oder halt ein Hotel. In fast jedem Städtchen findet ein Option für Iso-Matte und Zelt bis hin zum 5-Sterne Hotel.

Uns hat die Campervan-Variante von roadsurfer am besten gefallen. So konnten wir nach Belieben den Standort wechseln und verschiedene Spots im Spessart anfahren.

Spessart

Eine Auswahl an mountainbike-freundlichen Gastgebern in der Region findet ihr hier.

Sprache

Natürlich Deutsch, auch wann man als Norddeutscher das Hessische eher als Fremdsprache wahrnimmt. 😉

Verpflegung

Egal durch welches Dörfchen oder Städtchen ihr kommt, ihr findet immer ein Wirtshaus oder Supermarkt wo es etwas Leckeres zu essen gibt.

Wir sind am ersten Abend ins Jagdhaus Haselruhe eingekehrt. Hier bekommt ihr viele regionale Gerichte und vor allem Wild aus der Region, in sämtlichen Varianten!

In Roßbach gibt es ein kleines Café Namens Café Koller, welches man nicht gleich als solches erkennt. Aber was man dort an Kuchen und Torten bekommt ist echt gut. Eine Empfehlung welches das beste Stück Kuchen ist, können wir euch nicht geben, es hat allen geschmeckt, also selber hinfahren und ausprobieren!

Spessart

Das Gasthaus Wiesbuettsee liegt oben an der L2905. Hier kann man sich vor den letzten Höhenmetern und dem anschließenden Downhill stärken.

Nach unserer Tour in Roßbach waren wir zu fertig um den Campingkocher noch anzufeuern. Zufällig lief uns ein Dönerladen über den Weg www.döneriapizzeria.de/. Zu unserer Überraschung war es mehr als ein Dönerimbiss so wie wir ihn aus Hamburg oder Frankfurt kennen. Es hatte mehr von einem Restaurant und es gab nicht nur Döner und verschiedenste orientalische Variationen sondern auch Pizza.

Für den nächsten Besuch hat uns Alex noch die besten Burger im Spessart empfohlen: The Orbärs. Wir waren nicht dort, aber Alex kann man trauen 😉

Touren

Tag 1:

Begonnen haben wir mit dem Horseshoe Trail, der Vereinsstrecke des “Schlappe Waden e.V.” Vom Parkplatz ging es ein kurzes Stück bergauf bis zum ersten Trail-Einstieg. Wer will kann noch etwas weiter hochfahren, denn der Trail hat zwei Einstiege, deren Strecken später wieder aufeinander treffen. Der Horseshoe Trail beginnt als Singletrail und ist relativ steil mit ein paar gebauten Kurven. Im Verlauf der Strecke ist der Trail mit gebauten Hindernissen gespickt. Spaßig wurde es nachdem man den Waldweg gekreuzt hat. Hier verläuft der Trail immer noch auf Waldboden, aber es reihen sich kleinere und mittlere Sprünge und Kicker mit Gaps hintereinander. Das Ganze wird abgerundet von einigen kleineren Anliegerkurven. Anfänger sollten vielleicht nicht unbedingt alles auf Anhieb springen. Aber wer schon fortgeschrittener ist wird hier seinen Spaß haben.

Nachdem man das zweite Mal einen Waldweg gekreuzt hat, läuft der Trail etwas flacher aus. Aber hier kommt man mit ausreichender Geschwindigkeit auch auf seine Kosten. Kurz vor dem Ende gibt es noch eine Rampe aus Holz von der man droppen kann.

Auf einem Waldweg, der später immer schmaler wird geht es dann bergauf und zurück zum Startpunkt. Das kann man dann so lange machen bis die Sonne untergeht.

Wir haben noch einen kleinen Schlenker eingebaut und sind einen kurzen Trail gefahren, der sich wie ein langgezogener Pumptrack anfühlt. Mit ordentlich pushen kann man schnell Geschwindigkeit aufbauen auch ohne zu treten.

Spessart

Tag 2:

Geweckt von zwei lauten Knalls, die unseren Bulli ordentlich durchgeschüttelt haben starteten wir in den Tag. Wir wissen bis heute nicht genau, was es war, tippen auf Überschallflieger oder den Start der Zombie-Apokalypse. Einige Tage später stellte sich heraus, dass es Zweiteres wohl doch nicht gewesen sein konnte.

Während unseres Frühstücks hat es dann leider angefangen stark zu regnen, so dass wir das Frühstück bis in den späten morgen ausdehnten. Gegen Mittag hörte es endlich auf zu regnen und wir starteten erstmalig mit E-MTBs von NOX, die Alex für uns zum Testen organisiert hatte.

Mit elektrischer Unterstützung ging es vom Parkplatz Haselruhe los. Die Steigungen am Berg sind plötzlich nicht mehr so steil, wie man angenommen hätte. Oben angekommen fing es noch einmal kräftig an zu regnen. Also kurze Pause!

Spessart

Nach etwa einer halben Stunde Regen ging es nun endlich los in die Trails! Der Boden war noch leicht feucht, sodass man bei den nassen Wurzeln sehr aufpassen musste. Ansonsten war es ein perfekter Einstieg in den Biketag. Der Trail war ein klassischer Singletrail auf Waldboden, natürlich ganz ohne gebaute Elemente.

Nach dem ersten Trail ging dann es über den “Übungsparcours” zurück zum Parkplatz. Der Übungsparcours ist ein ca. 500 m langer Trail, der mit vielen kleinen Hindernissen gespickt ist, um sich als Anfänger langsam und sicher an das Thema Mountainbike heran zu tasten.

Danach ging es auf gleichen Wege erst einmal wieder hoch. Über die MTB-Route 5/19 (Beilsteinschleife mit einen Abschnitt auf dem Eselsweg) ging es auf einem entspannten Teilabschnitt zum Einstieg des “DonBosco-Trails”. Auf diesem circa 4 km langen Trail vernichtet man nicht sehr viele Höhenmeter. Er verläuft entlang der Höhenlinie und man rollt immer wieder kleinere und größere Rampen runter und rauf und pusht das Bike durch Kurven. Es heißt also keinen Speed verlieren!

Nach dem “DonBosco-Trail” kreuzen wir die Landstraße und es ging direkt hinein in den “Winterbergs-Trail”, einer der schwereren Trails in Bad Orb.

Der Waldboden war nicht mehr so weich wie wir ihn bis jetzt kannten. Die Geologie der Hangseite ist eine ganz andere und so fuhren wir nun über steinigen Boden. Der Trail ist etwa Handtuch-breit und hat ein ständiges Gefälle. Durch schnelle Kurven und einigen Stufen ging es immer weiter runter in Richtung Bad Orb.

Auf der “Route 19” pedalierten wir überwiegend bergauf zurück in Richtung Parkplatz Haselruhe. Zwischendurch gab es noch ein paar kurze Downhills, die waren jedoch so kurz, dass man sie nicht wirklich als Trail zählen kann 😉

Unser erster Ritt auf den E-Bikes war eine super Erfahrung: Die elektrische Unterstützung schiebt einen fast mühelos bergauf. Bergab hat man dank des niedrigen Schwerpunkts der Bikes sehr gute Kontrolle und zirkelt sie perfekt auch durch enge Kurven. Bei leicht ansteigenden Trail-Passagen bekommt man ausreichend Schub zustande um sie wie bergab zu fahren – ein Vorteil, den wir auf dem “DonBosco Trail” nutzen konnten. Der Akku hält je nach Fahrergewicht und Steigung länger oder kürzer. Daniels Bike hat nach knapp 35 km schlapp gemacht. Er behauptet es läge nur an dem Gewicht des Foto- und Videoequipments…. Naja wir lassen ihn mal in dem Glauben.

Tag 3:

Da wir am Vortag doch einige Zeit mit Filmen und Fotografieren verbracht hatten, mussten wir leider den “Haseltal-Trail” auslassen und einen Tag später nachholen. Diesmal hieß es aber wieder mit eigener Muskelkraft den Berg hinauf zu pedalieren. (So ein E-Bike macht den Aufstieg doch irgendwie entspannter ;))

Der “Haseltal-Trail” ist ein gebauter Trail, der sich über 2,6 km hinunter ins Haseltal zieht. Er beginnt recht flach mit vielen Anliegerkurven. Danach wird er geradliniger und es reihen sich mehrere Sprünge hintereinander. Im Verlauf des Trails wird das Gelände auch immer steiler, so dass man weniger pushen muss und das Bike laufen lassen kann.

Parallel zur Forststraße, die wir am Anfang hinauf gekurbelt sind, geht der Trail mal flacher, mal steiler bergab. Abwechselnd fährt man Sprünge, offene Kurven und Anlieger. Vor dem letzten Abschnitt kreuzen wir ein letztes Mal die Forststraße. Hier kommt, durch die relativ großen Anliegerkurven und den natürlichen Sprüngen, bei denen man ordentlich an Höhe gewinnen kann, dann sogar etwas Bike-Park-Feeling auf. Am Ausgang des Trails kann man gemütlich die letzten Meter zum Jagdhaus Haselruhe rollen und seinen Kalorienhaushalt wieder auffüllen.

Das fiel für uns leider aus, da für den Tag noch Roßbach auf dem Plan stand.

Spessart

Roßbach war dieses Jahr ein Austragungsort der Enduro-One, einer Mountainbike Rennserie für Jedermann. Zudem wird in Roßbach gerade an neuen Genehmigungen für weitere Endurostrecken gearbeitet, wir sind gespannt was da in nächster Zeit so Offizielles entsteht. In Roßbach hat sich Ralf, ein Kumpel von Alex angeschlossen, der auch das Rennen der Enduro-One in Roßbach mit organisiert hat. Also ein Local, der hier jeden Stein und Ast kennt.

Vor dem Start auf die Tour, haben wir uns noch im Café Koller mit Kuchen gestärkt. Von dort aus ging es durch den Ort Bieber immer neben dem Schwarzbach bergauf.

Nebenbei erzählte uns Ralf woher der Schwarzbach seinen Namen hat und auf was für einen Weg wir gerade nach oben radeln: So haben wir erfahren, dass in der Gegend früher viel Bergbau betrieben wurde und dass der Schwarzbach seinen Namen davon hat, dass der Bach früher von dem Metallen die aus dem Berg geholt wurden schwarz und giftig wurde. Wir radelten auf den alten Bahnstrecke der Bergwerksbetriebe was auch die gleichmäßige und relativ angenehme Steigung bergauf erklärte. Für jeden, der mehr über die Historie der Gegend erfahren möchte, stehen an allen wichtigen Stellen Infotafeln. Demnach war die Tour nicht nur etwas für den Körper, sondern auch den Geist 😉

Spessart

Bevor wir aber nun in den Downhill starten konnten, mussten wir uns noch eine verdammt steile Rampe bis zur Wiesbütt hinauf quälen. Am Wiesbüttsee wurde kurz gerastet und dann die letzten Höhenmeter in Angriff genommen.

Von da an ging es nur noch den Berg hinunter, anfangs auf einem Waldweg, auf dem aber wohl so wenig Verkehr ist, dass sich hier langsam ein kleiner Singletrail bildet. Danach ging es dann in einen echten Singletrail, der anfangs entlang der Höhenlinie ging, dann aber steiler wurde. Der Trail ist naturbelassen, sodass man das Gelände genutzt hat um kleine Hindernisse wie z.B. einen Sprung über einen alten Baumstumpf zu bauen.

In Roßbach gibt es zudem noch einen Mini Bike Park, der Bike Park Rosengarten. Auf dem kleinen Pumptrack und einen Dual-Cross kann man gut seine Bike-Technik verbessern.

Was war Besonders

E-Bikes – eine Erfahrung war es wert, einmal im Gelände darauf zu fahren. Die Anstrengung ist deutlich geringer und die Distanz, die man zurücklegt, ist entsprechend größer. Wir haben zwar nur 35km geschafft, aber ohne Filmausrüstung und ständiges Mehrfach-Fahren von Passagen für schöne Videosequenzen sollte man um einiges mehr ansammeln können. Man muss sich trotzdem die ganze Zeit bewegen, denn alleine fahren sie bekanntlich nicht! Im Downhill verhalten sich die NOX-Bikes fast wie normale, nur etwas schwerere Bikes. Man kommt also gut an die Grenzen jedes Downhill-Tracks heran.

Nicht zu vergessen, wenn man viel im Boost-Modus fährt, reicht der Akku nicht so wirklich lang, dann heißt es: selber in die Pedale treten damit das schwere Bike vorankommt (wie sich das anfühlt, wird euch Daniel vielleicht eines Tages erzählen.)

Außerdem war das “Wohnen” im VW Camper von roadsurfer eine echt coole Erfahrung. Der Bulli war mit allem ausgestattet was man so auf der Tour benötigt, vom Kocher bis hin zu einer Dusche. Somit konnten wir die Biketage von morgens bis abends ausnutzen und dann nach Belieben den Standort wechseln.

Kosten

Kosten pro Person:

Für unser langes Wochenende mit 4 Personen im Campervan:

ca. 150 € / p.P.

inklusive Essen, Trinken und Übernachten auf dem Campingplatz.

Fazit

Wir waren überrascht über die Vielfalt der unterschiedlichen Trails im hessischen Spessart. Von der Schwierigkeit sind die Trails natürlich lange nicht so anspruchsvoll wie die auf den Azoren oder in Alpen –  das ist klar. Aber das heißt nicht, dass sie nicht genauso viel Spaß machen. In den paar Tagen, in denen wir unterwegs waren, konnten wir nichtmal ansatzweise das volle Potenzial des Spessarts erfassen, aber es hat Lust auf mehr gemacht.

Wenn man dazu noch aus dem Frankfurter Raum kommt, ist der Spessart eine super Bike-Region, die auch nicht so weit entfernt ist. Innerhalb eines Tages kann man hin und zurück fahren und die Gegend Schritt für Schritt erkunden.

Wir finden der Spessart ist ein perfekter Spot um in die Saison zu starten. Wenn das Wetter in den Alpen noch nicht biketauglich ist oder gar noch Schnee liegt, kann man hier wunderbar seine Fahrtechnik aus dem Winterschlaf holen. Auch zum Saisonabschluss kann man hier noch ordentlich Spaß haben und das Jahr auf schönen Trails ausklingen lassen.

E-Bikes sind eine sehr gute Option für Alle, die an einem Tag viel erleben möchten und ihre Kräfte nicht bereits an die Uphills verlieren wollen. Mit guter Fahrtechnik geht fast alles, was für auch auf einem leichteren Bike bodennah machbar ist.

Biken und Campen im VW Bulli ist außerdem eine klasse Alternative um sein Budget zu schonen und möglichst viele verschiedene Orte kennen zu lernen.

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Norway again https://www.trail-business.com/norway-again/ https://www.trail-business.com/norway-again/#respond Sun, 15 Jul 2018 08:34:51 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=6220

Shortly after our trip to Romania Dustin biked with some friends in Hamburg. During their jump sessions in the south of Hamburg they decided to visit the Rollercoaster trail at Hafjell in Norway. The Rollercoaster is a 1,6 km long trail with a lot of airtime and much higher kickers than in Hamburg! A perfect place for training the skills.

The plan was set: It´s gonna be Norway again! Going there over a weekend was not worth the effort. Hence, they decided to go on a secound road trip across Norway for finding new spots for biking and catch up with old friends!

Stay tuned for an update on our Norway report and enjoy the report from Dustin on our facebook and instagram channels.

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Transylvania https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/transylvania/ https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/transylvania/#respond Sun, 27 May 2018 09:32:34 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?post_type=portfolio&p=6175


Transylvania – 05/2018



panorama
driving skills
endurance

In 2017 Marius a Romanian guide from ShredMind invited us for Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania near Brasov (Romania). By that time all we knew about Transylvania was:

  • it is located in Eastern Europe
  • it has a lot of mountains and forest
  • there was a strong German influence in Transylvania´s history
  • and of course the Dracula (Vlad the Impaler) stories.

During our trip we learned a lot about this country and its possibilities for mountain bikers. Enjoy our destination report about Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania – translated from Latin: “across the forest”!

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Planning

Planning yout own trip of Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania is not too hard. However, the logistics inside the country can be a bit tricky. Especially bringing your own bike. But you will find more about that in the “Getting there” section.

The best option for planning is getting help from locals. Everybody we met in Romania was extremely helpful and friendly. In our case Marius from ShredMind assisted us organizing the trip to Brasov in Transylvania. Subsequently, booking the flight to Bucharest was the easy part. In contrast, finding a proper rental Enduro mountain bike was quite hard, even for Marius.

We recommend bringing your own enduro bike. Make sure you consider this early in the planning phase, as it makes transport a bit harder!

Marius recommended to stay in the Bike House in Brasov (here on: AirBnB). It turned out being the best decision, as Ioana and Emil were the perfect hosts!

After all, our planning was pretty simple. Certainly the following report and the GPS tracks will help you organizing your own experience of Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania.

Best travelling time

The best time for Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania is from mid of May until beginning of October.

In May there is still a high chance of finding snow in the mountains.

Getting there

By plane:

You can reach Bucharest from many places in Europe by plane quickly. Airlines like Tarom, BlueAir and Lufthansa are the most popular ones. The flights are not too expensive – but check the prices for bike transport before booking! Ask  for transfer fees directly at the airlines (BlueAir was the cheapest when we traveled, but you have to call them).

By car from Europe mainland:

Depending on where you live you can also get there by car. Bear in mind that the roads do not always have the best level of maintenance in Romania. At night be aware of carriages without lights!

Logistics inside Romania:

Getting from Bucharest to Brasov was a bit more tricky. If you have a shuttle picking you up it is probably the best option. Other possibilities are:

Coaches or minibuses:

There are also coach and minibus services operating between Brasov and Bucharest (airport and city):

Book a couple of days in advance and confirm prices and luggage conditions (especially bike transport) via email or phone (they usually speak English).

Train:

Another option is the train service operating between Bucharest and Brasov. We did not use it because it was the most time consuming connection between Bucharest airport and Brasov. If you have time or you need a connection between Bucharest downtown and Brasov give it a try 😉

Accommodation

Based on our guides recommendation we stayed in very nice 400 years saxonian house with 3 apartments for rent. Ioana and Emil of the Bike House (here on: AirBnB) were definitely the best hosts we could imagine. The house is about 20 minutes walking distance from Brasov downtown. After a hard day of biking you also get an Uber for a few Lei. Highly recommended is the breakfast option with freshly prepared juice, local specialities and pretty much everything you can image (+ 7,- € per person). Moreover the breakfast is served in the historiv vaulted cellar of the house. As Emil is a mountain biker as well (he joined us one of the days) there is everything you need to clean your bikes or wash and dry your clothes.

As Brasov is a tourist hotspot of Romania you also find many other accommodation on the internet. For Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania we definitely recommend the Bike House in Brasov.

Language

As Transylvania also known as Siebenbürgen is the region in the center of Romania people speak Romanian (what a coincidence).

Anyhow, you get along with English quite well, especially talking to young Romanian people. Based on the history of Romania you also meet a lot of people who speak German.

Food

Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania can be tough, but you are not going to starve in Romania.

Unfortunately there is sad news for vegetarians: Romanian cuisine has a focus on meat. Our friend Jost, a part-time vegetarian who traveled with us, had a hard time finding a main dish without meat – beyond vegetable soup.

However, almost every food we had was very tasty and compared to the rest of Europe cheap. The soups you get in almost every hut in the mountains are excellent. Often there are starter dishes coming with potato bread and a Romanian tomato, beans and vegetablecream. More typical Romanian dishes are goulash, meat pie and polenta.

However, if you prefer to buy your own food, you will find small local supermarkets everywhere in Brasov. – Prepare to communicate with gestures and hand signs if you don´t speak Romanian.

The tap water is drinkable in most of the areas (Brasov was no problem) and in the mountains you find fresh water springs helping you out.

Here you find a few restaurant recommendations in Brasov´s historic center from us:

Sub Tampa – fusion of modern and traditional food – a more fancy place with a nice view over Brasov
Simones – known as the biker friendly place with great dessert
Le Ceaun – traditional Romanian dishes in the historic center of Brasov
Bistro de l’arte – cute restaurant also located in Brasov´s historic center

In fact, if you stay in the Bike House (see accommodation section) you can have a barbeque with your hosts in the front yard. They will most likely assist you in getting local delicacies for the grill.

Trips

On our day of arrival Marius from ShredMind picked us up at the airport. As we arrived in the evening all we did was strolling a bit through the historic city center of Brasov and had dinner.

Day 1:

Marius picked us up and we checked out our rental bikes for the week.

Our first Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania was planned for Prapastii about 25 km west of Brasov. We got there by car and started our steep uphill to the Cabana Curmătura hut at 1470 meters. The hut has a fresh water spring where you can refill your water supplies and gain power from a soup and delicious apple cake.

Right after our break at the hut we entered the forest for our first downhill. On the first flowing trail section there were only a few roots and rocks. After a while it got more rocky and technical resulting in a first snakebite flat. Only a few hundred meters after the first flat we climbed an uphill and cycled a wide green meadow with scattered rocks: second snakebite flat.

Back in the forest we had to deal with jagged serpentines and some tricky off-camber sections. Finally, the last segment was flowing and winding down to a fresh water spring.

For a second trail we cycled up to the town Mâgura.

Right next to a little farm Marius showed us the entry to a short and straight single track leading downhill into the valley. So then we biked down a narrow track between a few farm houses into the forest. Due to a small creek the ground got very slippery eypecially in the last rocky sections.

In the evening we reviewed the experience of our first day in Simone‘s Bar having a Sandwich and a German fritz-kola.

Day 2:

The second day Emil, the host from our accommodation, joined in. We drove up the mountains near Brasov by car. Soon we were ascending the rest hundred meters of elevation on our bikes. Even though it was raining most of the day, the ground in the forest had good grip. Only the sections with plenty of roots were slippery. Nevertheless, we descended the downhill sections safely and fast.

The second trip that day we went by shuttle bus up tro another spot in the mountains near Brasov. Contrary to the downhill tracks of the first trip the trails were less technical. Yet, Dustin crashed on slippery roots riding a pretty fast and steep segment. He had to take a day to recover.

Day 3:

Dustin explored the hiking trail in a narrow canyon with ladders and bridges.

The rest of us was prepared for classic Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania in the Piatra Mare mountains: uphill equals downhill. That day we had our first encounter with the Romanian sheepdogs starting on a field. Luckily, Marius and his friend Liviu, who joined us that day, knew how to handle the situation: Stop and get off the bikes. After a short conversation with the shepherds we started the ascend of Piatra Mare mountains.

Overall, the uphill through the forest was long and exhausting. However, the view sitting on the edge of the deep canyon during a short break was rewarding.

On the last bit up to the summit we crossed a wide green meadow full of rhabarb-like plants (careful: inedible!). Somewhere during the uphill we saw the footprint of a bear, but luckily not the bear itself – not sure whether stopping and getting off the bikes would have helped in such a case…

As we finally reached the Cabana Piatra Mare hut it was raining and we took our time to relax at a warm tea, some cookies and chocolate.

Unfortunately the dropper post on Daniel´s bike got stuck in the pulled out position. Therefore, we had to remove the post and Daniel biked downhill without a saddle.

Starting as a long and very flowing downhill it soon changed to tough root sections and some short rock gardens. Then, in the lower segment of the downhill Daniel followed Liviu at high pace and crashed in a curve ( documented in our video ;)).

Next day Dustin got back on the bike and Daniel took a day off to recover…

Day 4:

Again we started our day trip by car. Other than the days before we now headed towards Ciucas, southeast of Brasov. First, the ascend started on a forest path, followed by a segment we had to push and carry our bikes. After a short downhill we had to climb again. Then the next downhill started at a mountain flank leading us back into the forest. A perfect spot for a drone video!

Riding into the forest, it got a bit steeper and the ground was covered in loose debris. In fact, a nice flowing trail was the reward.

Before we reached the downhill of the Ciucas Enduro Series, we had to accomplish another uphill. The trails down the official race track was winding through the forest down a steep hill. In brief, another great day Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania.

On our way back we stopped at a nice Pizza place called Don Corleone.

Day 5:

On day 5 Max, a local mountain bike hero was guiding us. We met him in the city of Brasov and started a long uphill to the Postavaru funicular. After reaching the top of the cableway, we found us riding a short segment with switchback curves down to the Cabana Postavaru hut. Energised by a delicious soup and the so called cookie-salami (more cookie that salami) we entered the first trail down to the water reservoir. Locals call this track the “cookie-salami trail”.

From the water reservoir we speeded into the forest where the trail got more technical and narrow. Later on, both landscape and the single tracks created a great mountain biking experience for us. Thank you Max!

Afterwards, we pedaled a short uphill and got onto the “rotten trail” – only known by a few locals. This track turned out being a lot of fun despite some pretty technical sections. Moreover, the trail appeared to be never used by hikers.

Finally, the track of our last day of Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania led us right down over a green meadow into the historic Romanian part of Brasov.

Day 6:

Eventually, time to say goodbye to our new friends in Romania. We took the coach back to Bucharest and spent a full day exploring the city of Bucharest. If you plan a bike trip to Romania make sure you allow for at least one full day to visit the amazing city of Bucharest.

What we learned

During Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania we learned many new things, mostly related to the country Romania.

  1. Bring your own bikes to Romania! Even if it is a bit more expensive you will have way more fun. Even if you spent 200 € more for bringing your enduro bike – do it!! Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania does not have the same infastructure as e.g. the alps where you get well maintenanced rental bikes.
  2. The mountain biker scene in Brasov is bigger than we expected, mostly consisting of locals and only little tourists. Try to get in contact with local riders, otherwise it can be quite hard finding the best trails for Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania.
  3. The Romanian people are very open, kind and helpful.
  4. Street dogs are not dangerous, whereas sheep dogs can be a threat. If they approach you, stop immediately and get off the bike. Be confident and talk to them.
  5. It is likely to encounter brown bears (we only saw a footprint of a bear). Try to bike in groups and make noise when you enter less frequented areas (a friend from Romania had a whistle he used from time to time). Do not follow the bear´s tracks, cross its way or approach them on purpose.

Costs

Costs for 6 nights / 7 days Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania:

Flight: about 200,- € (+ 100 – 200,- € if you transport a bike bag) per person

Coach one-way Brasov to Bukarest: 10,- €

Accommodation: ~400,-€ 6 nights for 3 persons (45,- € per night for 3 persons + 7,-€ each for breakfast)

Food: ~110,-€ for 6 days per person

Local transport (Uber, shuttle, cable way, …): ~25,- € per person

Total per person (travelling in a group of 3): ~490,- € (excluding bike transport by plane)

Our conclusion

Transylvania seems to be a rather unknown destination for mainstream mountain bike tourism. Therefore, it is totally different to regions like the Alps or Mallorca.

There are a lot of trails around Brasov we did not even have time to explore (Sinaia, Azuga, …). You can easily stay more than a week in the Carpathian mountains.

Even in the most remote places you find huts serving soup, drinks and cake. If not you find many freshwater springs in the mountains.

Our final conclusion:

Overall, it was a great cultural experience. Enduro Mountain Biking in Transylvania is great for people who want to explore new destinations off the beaten track of bike tourism. Bring your own bike!

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Next stop – Romania mountains https://www.trail-business.com/next-stop-romania-mountains/ https://www.trail-business.com/next-stop-romania-mountains/#respond Thu, 29 Mar 2018 10:08:00 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=6018
Next stop – Romania mountains

Right after our trip to the Azores last summer  Marius from Carpathian Enduro Experience asked us if we like to visit him in the Romanian mountains. He organizes ski tours in winter and mountain bike tours in summer and offered to show us the best mountainbike tracks around Brașov.

At that time we had already started planning for visiting Madeira in 2018, but we changed our mind pretty quickly. The landscape seems to be rather untouched in the Carpathians. A great place to explore new trails in alpine area and meet the friendly romanian people.

The Carpathian mountains are stretching from Austria, Poland and Slovakia via Ukraine down south into Romania and Serbia. Our basecamp Brasov is located in the region of Siebenbürgen also known as TRANSYLVANIA!! A place full of myths and legends. Our chance for biking in Dracula´s backyard!

This time a friend of Daniel will join us. Jost is a bike addict, who even cycled 800 kilometers from Stuttgart to Hamburg for Daniels wedding last year.

Stay tuned to read what we experience in eastern Europe – Romania mountains!

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365 days of trails beside business https://www.trail-business.com/365-days-trail-business/ https://www.trail-business.com/365-days-trail-business/#respond Sun, 25 Feb 2018 08:08:16 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=5975

We have been online for 365 days now. It all started out as a quick idea. Our intentions were a mix of sharing our experience and inspiring other mountain bikers.

Sure, we are no bike magazine, journalists or professional riders. But that is the whole point of this blog: We are working full time and try to integrate our hobby in everyday´s life: trail and business!

Looking back at the last year of trail-business.com we are very proud that our intentions were recognized and you seem to like our stories.

Now it is time to thank you and all the people who supported us over the last 365 days!

Thank you…

  • …Marcel for guiding us in Davos
  • …Jan from DirtLej, Andre from Droneking and Bjørn from trailguide.net for your support on our Norway trip
  • …Carlos from Bike Safari Tours for the great experience on the Azores
  • …to all of our friends on our hometrails in Germany (destination reports coming soon!)
  • …feedspot for adding us to your TOP 100 Mountain Bike Blogs 
  • …to all the people on facebook and instagram who like our blog and help us to grow step by step

We are looking forward to the next 365 days with you: More pictures, videos, gps tracks and travel reports – all for free!

And our next destination will be: …..announced soon  ;p

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How to get rid of bike shoe odor https://www.trail-business.com/bike-shoe-odor/ https://www.trail-business.com/bike-shoe-odor/#respond Wed, 03 Jan 2018 16:32:31 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=5952

The first post in 2018 starts with an amazing topic: smelly shoes… 😛

But honestly: this time a year it is almost impossible to get around muddy tracks and puddles. Moreover, I don´t know many mountain bikers who really care about getting dirty. I cycle to work everyday and can´t avoid getting soaking wet.

Every mountain biker knows the feeling of coming home covered in mud, stuffing the dirty clothes into the washing machine and then leap into the shower. What´s left? The wet and dirty shoes. Most of us rinse the dirt off and put them on the radiator, stuffed with old newspapers and take out the soles. So far so good, but they will start smelling after a couple of dirty experiences. The reason for the odor is bacteria that like the wet environment in the bike shoes and start growing there. Yuk!

After having tried different options of getting rid of the smell the first finding was: forget all the sprays and gadgets you can buy. The solution is much easier and healthy as well! No, it is not buying new shoes…

How to get rid of bike shoe odor:

Always start with washing and drying the shoes properly. The best way to remove bike shoe odor afterwards is:

  • Peel and eat 2-3 tangerines or 1 orange (also try different citrus fruits)
  • Put the peels inside your shoes overnight
  • Remove the peels in the morning and take a smell (I know you would do that anyways! 🙂 )

The most ugly smell is removed already after one first night. As a side effect you probably won´t suffer from vitamin deficiency that easy!

How does it work?

I really have no clue! In case there are any chemists or biologists in our audience please leave a comment with the explanation for us.

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Davos https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/davos/ https://www.trail-business.com/destinations/davos/#comments Sun, 26 Nov 2017 10:28:28 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?post_type=portfolio&p=5839


Davos – 09/2016

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1

Tschuggen trail

2

Brämabüel – Clavadeler Alp and Jakobshorn Flowtrail

3

1st section Alps Epic Trail

4

Gotschnagrat

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Höhenweg – Klosters

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Weissfluhgipfel Trail



panorama
driving skills
endurance

What did I think as Daniel and his wife were on honeymoon and a friend asked me to go mountain biking in Davos, Switzerland? – I thought: mountains, great views and nice trails – YES I´m in!

The only thing I had to do was to find more friends to join, in order to occupy the empty seats in the car. That´s is how a very spontaneous bike & road trip to Davos began! And really sorry there is no cool video today 😉

Planning

This time my friend Sebastian did “the planning” before asking me. He has some friends in Switzerland: one who rents apartments and another one (Marcel) who works at bike-academy as a mechanic and bike instructor. Fortunately Marcel had the weekend off and offered to show us the trails around Davos! My job was to find more bikers to join for the trip to Davos, buy drinks and supply for the weekend. Easy!

Even though we didn´t do too much planning you will find everything you need in this article.

Ok, I had some more planning to do: Two week before the trip a branch ruined my rear derailleur, rear wheel and broke the derailleur hanger out of the frame. It was a hassle trying to get all the parts replaced, especially the rear swing arm of the frame. But Bernd from Nobelhobel helped me getting all the parts and fixing it before we drove off to Davos – thank you Bernd! 😉

Best travelling time

Best travel time for mountain biking in the swiss canton Graubünden is between May and the middle of September. Hence the end of September was a bit of a gamble. But I was lucky and the weather was really nice! After September you usually get snow on the top of the mountains and the weather can change rapidly!

Getting there

Getting there by plane is pretty difficult. The nearest airports are Zürich (CH), Stuttgart (D) and Munich (D). From there you have to take the train or a car to reach Davos. Depending on where you start you may have to change train quite often. Going by car is definitely the easiest way.

Remember you have to get a motorway sticker (highway toll) in Switzerland BEFORE entering. Don´t forget – otherwise it takes way more time and money until you ever reach Davos.

Accommodation

You can find a lot of accommodation on airbnb or hotels on other platforms. The price ranges from budget accommodation (about 25€/p.P. per night) to more luxurious places (100€/p.P. per night). It is up to you whether you need a fully equipped gym and spa or a comfortable bed is all you need.

As mentioned we rented an apartment near down town from a friend. The interior was coming with a fully equipped kitchen and the design was held in the styles of the 70s. Everything was clean and there was even a pool. We should have brought our swimming trunks. For four people over two nights the size of the apartment was good. For a longer stay maybe a bigger apartment is better.

If you need a contact feel free to give us a shout.

Language

Yeah, well – that is a thing in Switzerland. If you speak German, French or English you should be fine in Davos. When they speak German theay tend to put an “i” at the end of every second word, what makes it sound really cute (I know German and cute is a contradiction in itself).

The language Swiss German is spoken in all parts of Switzerland and developed in the 1960s to distinguish from the Germans. In the 1980s together with the radio and TV the Swiss German become more and more popular in Switzerland. Swiss German is has influences from French and Italian, depending on the canton you go in Switzerland.

Food

Similar to Norway everything in Switzerland is far more expensive than in the rest of Europe. Hence, we brought most of our supply for breakfast and dinner from Germany. If you don´t import your own food there are plenty of supermarkets. Usually the open from 9 AM -10 PM seven days a week. You are not going to starve in Davos 😉

We recommend taking a rest at the restaurants on the top of the mountains or in the valley during your bike trips. You will enjoy great meals combined with stunning views over the mountains. But remember to bring enough cash (it is expensive)!

Trips

During two amazing days biking in Davos, we enjoyed beautiful landscape, alpine regions, forest and wide open areas. The range of tracks from flowy to technical was extraordinary and we hope to inspire you with our description below:

Day 1:

Track 1: We took a bus from “Davos Dorf” up the “Flüelapassstrasse”. From there we had to follow the road until we reached the river “Inn” in the next valley. After a few kilometers we arrived at the first trail head. This track was perfect for starting the day – not being too difficult, with a very nice rythm and escorted by the creek “Flüelbach”. As the track is a famous hiking trail we had to bike carefully. After a few wider track sections we finally arrived at “Chalet Velo”. We purchased snacks and thought about improving our technical skills on the pump track or the small bike park, but decided to save our energy for the next tracks.

Track 2: After going up to the Jakobshorn by cableway and a few meters cycling on gravel road we turned onto the next track. It started with very challenging short and steep turns – eyes on the track! Luckily, the last section rewarded us with a beautiful view on the wide open landscape and much easier biking.

Track 3: Again we went up the Jakobshorn by cableway. Our goal: biking the first part of the “Alps Epic Trail“. The whole Alps Epic Trail is about 35km long with almost 80% singletracks! It all started with pedaling to the trail head on gravel road. After entering the Alps Epic we found ourselves on an uphill that changed quickly into an incredibly flowy downhill. Fast curves and almost no pedaling staying on the same contour line made this track really awesome to ride. We left the Alps Epic at the “Sertigerstrasse” and rolled down the road very happy. A perfect first day in Davos!

Day 2:

Track 1: Early in the morning we took the “Parsennbahn 1” half way up. As we exited the gondola we found ourselves in dense fog with visibility below 20 meters. Despite the bad conditions we decided to give it a go. We managed biking down the slippery track and tough switchbacks with fogged up googles. After many turns mixed with flowy sections the poor conditions got a bit better and we enjoyed the ride through the forest down to “Davos See”. We crossed the road and made our way down to “Klosters” on hiking trails and narrow paths.

Davos

Track 2: From “Klosters” we realxed on our way up with the “Gotschnabahn” to the peak at 2,250 m. Right after a quick lunch we got onto a natural single track down to Davos. The first part of the ride was slippery and extremely muddy. It was hard to control the bike and stay on track. After only a few meters the ground filled with gravel and rocks and got much easier to bike. For mountain bike beginners we recommend to be careful and get off the bike at some spots that we would declare as no fall zones. But don´t worry you can also enjoy the stunning view carrying your bike!

Following the track into a forest it lead us directly to the “Davos See” the perfect place for a refresh in the lake – if it was only summer!

Next time we hope for better weather conditions and may even check out the bike park in “Klosters” as well 😉

Davos

Track 3: Our last ride of day 2 started at the top of the “Parsennbahn 2” at the Weisflujoch at 2,600 m. Going down the ski-slope we crossed over to the other side of the Weisflujoch and the Schiahorn for the Strelapass. From here the trail went up and down (but mostly uphill) passing a small mountain lake. We reached the “Chörbschhornhütte” for a first rest. Luckily we brought our own lunch as the cabin is not serviced. It was a good idea taking a long break before we started for the 6 km downhill track. The trails begins rocky and technical with steep sections interrupted by amazingly  flowy parts. Approximately half-way down we got into the rythm of a smooth track joined by a few rocks and natural jumps. Thereafter, the track gets pretty curvy and fast so both our hands and brakes had to work hard. Before we arrived in the valley we slowly biked through a forest looking for a tooth one of our buddies lost a while ago. Send us a message when you find it 😉

Day 3:

Before we headed back to Hamburg, Sebastian took us up the”Flüelapassstrasse”. Three of us biked the first track of day 1 again. Still remembering the tricky sections we had a lot of fun speeding down the track. A superb conclusion for the weekend in Davos.

And now stop reading and get take your bike on the tracks in Davos!

What we learned

Cheese fondue tastes amazing after a long day on the bike!

Bring a good Enduro bike to Davos and the tracks are thrilling. As most of the paths are natural hiking trails, cycling can be very exhausting, especially climbs up to 2,500 m – you would die with a Downhill bike 😉

Trail-tolerance works great in Davos. Hikers and mountain bikers get along pretty well – please respect and help supporting it stays that way.

Don’t crash your bike at home before going on a mountain bike trip! Well maybe crashing is always a bad thing, but it really sucks right before bike holidays.

Costs

All costs per person:

Fuel (Hamburg to Davos): 35,- €

Accommodation incl. Davos-card and tourist tax: 63,80,- €

Bus-ticket in Davos: 8,80,- €/tour

Lift pass for the bike: 8,80,- €/day/bike

Food: ~20,- €/day

Total: ~165,- €

Our conclusion

It was a great and spontaneous short trip to Davos we can highly recommend. Let´s try to sum up some advices and highlight for you:

  • The area gives you the chance to choose from bike parks with tables, jumps or drops and almost natural trails for both hikers and bikers.
  • Davos offers a perfect range from easy to hard and short to long tracks gives you the opportunity to tailor your own bike experience. The “Alps Epic Trail” is about 35 km with almost every meter going on singletracks.
  • You can chosse from biking up every mountain or going by bus and lift.
  • An Enduro or All-mountain bike is the best choice. Bringing a Downhill bike will eat up all your energy pedalling the uphills inbetween and during the tracks.
  • Many locals bike around Davos. Therefore, feel free to ask the friendly people for advice and the best tracks.

Special thanks to Marcel (a friend of Sebastian) from bike-academy for guiding us in Davos!

Please leave a comment for us and feel free to ask us for assistance planning your own trip to Davos.

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Mountain biking green – carbon offset https://www.trail-business.com/mountain-biking-green/ https://www.trail-business.com/mountain-biking-green/#respond Mon, 28 Aug 2017 16:42:17 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=5812

For sure biking is much more environmental friendly than driving a car – not a big secret 😉

But mountain biking and especially taking your bike on holidays probably isn´t that environmental friendly? Together with the Ekos Group, a social enterprise charity, we had a closer look at the carbon emission we produce with our environmental friendly passion.

The basics

Firstly it is very hard to find good and reliable information about this topic when it comes to mountain biking. Especially the production of a mountain bike varies heavily, depending on the material, the parts and the sustainability effort of the manufacturer. Moreover it is not possible to calculate an exact carbon equivalent for everything like spare parts, crop damage riding trails or individual equipment. As offsetting a ton of carbon costs only about 23 € it is fair to over-estimate the emitted carbon slightly for offsetting. We stick to rough values in this article based on multiple resources, studies and correspondence with EKOS from New Zealand.

But now let´s try to give you hand with mountain biking green(er) by carbon offsetting.

The bike

According to many bike companies the customers still care mostly about the price. That makes environmental friendly production pretty hard for them. One step towards mountain biking green is to have a closer look at the brand you buy. The following numbers can be taken as a guideline to carbon offset a brand new fully equipped mountain bike:

  • Mountain bike with aluminum frame (can be recycled): 350 kg CO2 eq.
  • Mountain bike with carbon fibre frame (very hard to recycle): 200 kg CO2 eq.

Also bear in mind the CO2 emissions for shipping when you order online.

The spare parts

Calculating the CO2 equivalent for spare parts almost makes no sense. Unless you burn down your tyres every week 🙂 We think smaller spare parts can be covered by the over-estimation when you offset your mountain bike holidays. Anyways we try to give you an idea for some parts:

  • front wheel (Al): 10 kg CO2 eq.
  • rear wheel (Al): 20 kg CO2 eq.
  • chain: 10 kg CO2 eq.
  • tyre: 5 kg CO2 eq.
Mountain bike holidays

Again totally depending on where, how and for how long you are going your emissions have to be calculated. We always try to offset our holidays and the calculations are not too hard. In our bike holiday planner we already included the calculations of CO2 eq. based on your mode of transport. Here is what´s behind the calculations:

  • 1 liter of gas for a car: 2.64 kg CO2 eq.
  • 1 kilometer/person in a train: 0.041 kg CO2 eq.
  • 1 kilometer/person in a bus: 0.032 kg CO2 eq.
  • 1 kilometer/person in a plane: 0.211 kg CO2 eq.
  • 1 kilometer/person on a ferry: 0.1 kg CO2 eq.

If you take your car and/or bike on the ferry add 0,002 kg CO2 eq. for each kilogram per kilometer on top.

For using the bike you can roughly calculate:

  • 1 kilometer/person on a bike: 0.01 kg CO2 eq.

During mountain bike holidays you also consume food, water and electricity. Probably some a bit more (food) than on an average work day and some a little less (electricity). A typical and average split in everyday energy consumption looks like this:

  • Cleaning the dishes 7%
  • Light 9%
  • Cooking 11%
  • Washing/Drying 13%
  • Fridge 17%
  • Electronics 27%
  • Else 16%

The easiest way to calculate your consumption with an averge CO2 eq. on a daily basis using 3 kg CO2 eq. per person.

Example

For our last mountain bike holidays in Norway we calculated the following carbon emissions:

  • Car – appr. 175 liters of Diesel – 462 kg CO2 eq.
  • Ferry – 330 km (3 persons): 99 kg CO2 eq.
  • Car, bikes and supplies (~2 tons) on the ferry – 330 km: 1188 kg CO2 eq.
  • Food, water, electricity (8 days/3 persons): 72 kg CO2 eq.
  • 100 km on mountain bike (3 biker): 3 kg CO2 eq.

Total: ~1750 kg CO2 eq.

Summary

In order to be on the safe side we offset 2 t CO2 eq. for less than 50 € with our new partner EKOS! We are aware that carbon offsetting is a modern selling of indulgences. But not doing this is far worse. As mountain bikers we have a natural interest in maintaining nature – we hope you support us and offset at least your mountain biking together with us for mountain biking green. 🙂

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Holiday planner for mountain bikers https://www.trail-business.com/holiday-planner/ https://www.trail-business.com/holiday-planner/#respond Sun, 16 Jul 2017 13:33:27 +0000 https://www.trail-business.com/?p=5131
Mountain bike holiday planner and the theory of organizing mountain bike travels

Planning mountain bike travels can get very sophisticated and confusing quickly. During planning you will come across many options asking yourself whether to go by ferry or plane, sleep at a campground or in a cabin, stay 6 or 7 days or even take a guide? Which combination is now the best in regards of your budget and travel time?

Imagine yourself planning mountain bike holidays for you and five of your friends. Now you try to find the best combination out of hundreds of solutions with respect to cost, time and environmental impact. Not an easy task! But we have been through this a few times by now and want to share something with you:

The trail-business holiday planner!

How does the holiday planner work?

It is an excel spreadsheet that can easily be used by everybody (who has Microsoft Excel running on the computer…). Download a blank version and an example file. After opening one of the files simply follow the steps in the 8 tabs along the bottom of the sheet:

  • Starting Tab: Start with entering your basic travel data (dates and people joining the tour)
  • Tab 1: Enter daily costs (assumption for food and maybe bike rental)
  • Tab 2: Enter transportation options (car, train, bus, ferry,…)
  • Tab 3: Enter accommodation (hotel, campground, cabin,…)
  • Tab 4: Enter services you want to use (guides, tour packages,…)
  • Tab 5: optionally you can enter equipment you need to purchase for this travel
  • Tab 6: Build 3 combinations based on the tabs 2-4 using the dropdown menus
  • Final Tab: In this final calculation you get an overview. Based on travel time, costs and environmental impact you can then choose you best option

The holiday planner is totally flexible and you can edit every cell colored in blue. Every tab comes with an important notice colored in red at the top of the sheet.  Don´t worry, even without substantial knowledge in excel it can easily be mastered. We are currently thinking about recording a tutorial video for you, let us know if you need it.

How much does the holiday planner cost?

It is 100 % free! Trail-business.com is a private project so far without any monetarisation in mind. The only thing that is not free is the improvement of the holiday planner. This is where we need your input! You found mistakes, typos or have a question? Let us know and we can make the holiday planner better together.

Please download, use, like and don´t forget to leave a comment below!


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