A bike ride around the European Appalachians

At last I had time to dust off my mountain bike and took a ride around the Global Unesco Geopark Villuercas Ibores Jara. I was looking forward to trying one stage of the “Ruta de Los Apalaches” -the Appalachian trail” in English.

That is the name of the annual Mountain Bike Race that takes place in Alía in september, organized by Alía Extrema Cycling Group. This sporting event goes through some of the Geopoark’s highest summits from where to admire the so called appalachian relief.

Although the Appalachian mountain range is in America, there is a link with this area of Spain.

It turns out that the Geopark mountains are aking to the Appalachian of America; that is the reason why the Geopark Villuercas belongs to the well-known International Appalachian Trail organization-IAT

To my view, what makes this cycling route appealing is that you can get to stunning sites hidden from the tourists eyes.

On this occasion, one of Alía Extrema members, Fermín, joined me in this adventure.

We started the route from Alía early in the morning. Immediately, we went up -better said “climbing” – a two kilometres steeped hill which trail ended in the picturesque Peña Amarilla geosite – Yellow rock in English-. After a brief momment to take a breath and some photos, we took a well marked trail that drove us to the Guadarranque River. Once crossed, I saw myself “climbing” again a tough slope that drove us to Puerto de San Vicente, just in the Castilla La Mancha’s border.

Right there is located, without a doubt, one of the best Geopark’s sights: the Altamira viewpoint, from which to admire the outstanding appalachian relief I mentioned at the begining of this post. After taking some photos, we rode down through out a rugged path to get to the Guadarranque River again and get back to Alía.

Finally, we had completed 45 km! Superb morning! Though, it was too much for me. I was exhausted, but at the same time, eager to do another route around the Geopark and tell you all about it.