Is it true you have one of the hardest climbs in europe on the island?

Hi,

I’m thinking of getting away from the Irish wind and rain in February and going training somewhere warm for 10 days or so. Its possible i will be on my own and also possible a small group from my club might join me.

I’ve been told Tenerife could be the place to go. Is it true you have one of the hardest climbs in europe on the island?

Can you tell me if the weather is suitable for training in the Tenerife mountains in february? Also how much is your bike hire and guided training spins?

All the best,

Hello,

Firstly, sorry for the delay, I was inundated with bike rental queries this last week. I’m normally not that slow with email.

Great to see you’re interested in cycle-training here during the winter!

Difficulty is a subjective thing. The main differences are the cumulative ascent and the gradient. Obviously none of the climbs in the Alps start at sealevel, so the climbs in Tenerife and Gran Canaria can be much longer. European climbs often start at anywhere between 500 and 1500 m altitude and go up to 2000 or 2500 m or so.

In Tenerife, there are two places which reach 2350 m altitude (Izaña and the Teleférico), so if you start on the coast they’re instant 2350 metre climbs -greater height difference than some of the biggest European cols!

There are four or 5 different onroad ascents to Mt Teide as well as many offroad routes. Each one is hard in its own way. The Southern approaches are hot during Summer months and are psychologically difficult at the top especially when you can see a long straight road ahead with no shade (dry, harsh volcanic terrain above 2000m altitude). The North approach from La Orotava is steeper and you will see the same “3km winding road” signs about 7 times.

Puerto de la Cruz to Izaña via Aguamansa, 0 to 2360m in 41.5km = 5.7% average.
Candelaria to Izaña via Arafo, 0 to 2360m in 41.2km = 5.7% average (steeper in places because it is not a constant climb).
Bajamar to Izaña via La Esperanza, 0 to 2360m in 54.2 = 4.4% average.
Los Cristianos РLas Ca̱adas, 0 to 2356m in 48.2km (4.9% average)
Los Gigantes РLas Ca̱adas 0 to 2356m in 50.9km (4.6%)
Almáciga / Taganana to Anaga, 0 to 620m in 5.8km (10.7% average)
Afur to Anaga, 225 to 765m in 6.7km (8.1% average)

Of course those are actual roads, but you can easily find much steeper streets approaching 15-25% average gradient!

For comparison:

Mon Ventoux starts at 300 m and peaks at 1912 m (7.4% average gradient)
Alpe d’Huez starts at 700 or 750 m and finishes at 1815 m (4.9 to 8.1% gradient depending on the route you take)

Col de la Madeleine starts at 500 m and peaks at 1990 m (5.5 to 8.0% gradient depending on the route)
Col du Galibier goes from 1400m to 2640 m (6.9% average slope)
Col du Tourmalet (Pyrenees) begins at 1260-1400 m and climbs to 2,115 m (7.4% average gradient) [Read more →]

Moped rental in Tenerife | Hire a motor scooter in Tenerife

Having looked at a map of Tenerife (for almost the first time) its larger that I thought, also you appear to be about 45km away (I’m down in Golf Del Sur). I don’t think everyone else I’ll be with would be very happy if I pinched the car for a whole day, so I’ll probably hire a moped and shoot over – I assume I can hire one near where I’m staying ?

If I bring my camelbak and gloves, will you supply everything else ie helmet, inner tubes, etc ?

Hello,

That sounds like fun… be aware that by spanish law, mopeds smaller than 125cc [I think] aren’t allowed on TF1, TF2 and TF5, so you’ll have to come up over Teide via TF21, or else around the other way instead (via Santiago del Teide & Icod) -this might be better- ’cause then you’ll see more of the island!

Yes it’s quite a hike, that’s why I have to charge 18€ for the delivery service, but as you can see, it ain’t worth delivering a bike for just 1 day. (18€ for 3 to 4 hours’ driving!)

It isn’t like Italy which is inundated with scooters, but you should be able to locate something in the South easily enough. The overwhelming majority of rental vehicles are cars, and the rates are very, very cheap. Motorbikes & scooters are another kettle of fish. After a pretty extensive google search in English, Spanish and German, I managed to find several places that rent mopeds, scooters as well as motorbikes.

I haven’t been there before, but keep in mind that Golf del Sur is a pretty isolated resort complex, so you might find it more difficult than you think to rent a scooter. I’d ring up the place where you are staying and ask them about moped
availability — in spain mopeds/scooters are called “ciclomotores”.

For €30/day I can supply everything (helmet, shoes, pedals, tools, innertubes, bottles, etc.)

I don’t supply cycling clothing yet, but I will eventually sell stuff like lycra shorts, arm warmers, etc when I have a dedicated shopfront. Be aware that it is already quite chilly up there above 1000m. *Definitely* bring a windproof jacket, arm + leg warmers and gloves, if only for the descents.

Thanks very much & hope to see you soon in Tenerife!
-Les.

Do you rent freeride MTBs | DH bikes for hire?

I may also want to do some mountain biking – perhaps exchange last 2 or 3 days of the road bike for a full sus MTB? Let me know

Hello,

For now I don’t rent DH/Freeride bikes out without a guided ride because there is more tendancy for stupid riding behaviour when I’m not around. I realise that they’re built to have fun and everything, but I think a high probablility of component failures is associated with that style of riding. When they do get broken, it just isn’t very economical for a business to charge 30€ per day and then have to fork out more than that for repairs 50% of the time. I’ve seen broken derailleurs, broken frames, not to mention the fork rebuilds required, etc.

The other possibility is to do a guided 2000m+ downhill MTB ride with me, in which case you could get to use the dualie the entire time. It has DH-specific rims, 8″ hydraulic brakes + sintered pads, 130mm of front travel & 100mm in the rear. In that case, you’d have to get yourself over to this side of the island (El Puerto) by 8:00am.

Hope you understand, Les.

Are car drivers friendly towards cyclists in the Canary Islands, Spain?

Im really starting to admire this place [Tenerife] compared to Northern Ireland where im from in terms how cyclists are treated on the road. Ive give a few examples of what is regular at home.

Being passed by articulated lorries with less than 60 cms of room, on a corner because they cannot be bothered to slow down and wait 20 seconds till the road opens up a bit. I was that annoyed i rang the haulage company and got a lecture about how long it takes for lorries to accelerate again after slowing down for cyclists that should not be on road… and the multitude of gear changes and breaking required for a lorry to wait.. behind.

Ive been passed by mad drivers in very small cars with very loud exhausts at speeds of excess of 100kph on single lane roads.

Ive had drivers in white vans throw bottles at me, shouting tosser.
Many times ive had drivers ahead of me at busy junctions without their indicators on.

Many drivers will also wait for ages getting onto a junction while im behind breathing their lovely disel fumes while they are fixing their hair or playing with their phone.

We do have cycle lanes in some towns, and as a rule i dont use em, because pedestians walking their dogs and children are playing there (they just divide the pavement into 2) and then you have to use a pedestrian crossing to cross a road.

and yet, for 3 months solid before the weather just got totally appauling i cycled the 11km to work and back 5 days a week. I picked one day in the week were id go all out and max my speed treating it like a time trial. Then a longer club run of 50-60km on sunday. I started with a hybrid bike and switched to my ridley one in sept.

cya later

Hey mate glad to hear from ya!

I must say that I really look forward to your latest ride reports… I’ve been pretty busy organising all the bookings lately.

Yes, I’m glad you notice that drivers are extremely patient here in the Canary Islands. In 3 years of riding in Tenerife I’ve never had a problem. Amazing! But I do always try to get out of other vehicle’s paths wherever possible.

You might be interested in reading this article about why car drivers treat cyclists with a lot of respect here (it’s quite long, but it explains a lot).

They’re even nicer in Holland and other places I’m told… and probably any European country like Denmark, France, etc with a strong cycling culture. I have a had a few Germans and Finnish tell me that the car drivers are nicer here than where they live.

Back in Australia where I used to live, I’ve even had firecrackers thrown at me! [Read more →]

Specialist tour operators for mtb trips to Tenerife?

Hi,

I hope you can help with some info and links. I want to know how possible it is to make a trip to Tenerife for a mountain bike trip in February.

I have never been to the Canary islands before so am a bit ignorant. Are there any specialist tour operators for mtb trips?
Any help would be cool.

Regards

Hello,

Yes of course… Tenerife is a fantastic place for mountainbiking; the best place for MTB is probably in the North. Generally the mountainbike trails are wide, rocky and hilly. We can arrange guided MTB tours from Puerto de la Cruz for you… mostly descending through the La Orotova valley (because riding offroad inside Mt. Teide national park is prohibited).

We can also arrange mountainbike hire… we have some great quality bikes in many sizes & they can be delivered anywhere in Tenerife (there is a minimum of 3 days’ rental for delivery to the South). Delivery to Puerto de la Cruz area is free…

If you are interested, please get back to me with the following information:
-your accommodation details
-will you bring your own bike & equipment or do need to rent a MTB from us?

One last thing, February is one of the busiest months for bike rentals, so you will need to book early…
Looking forward to hearing from you!

Thanks very much
-Leslie

Bike hire terms and conditions:

We provide these rental bicycles in order for cyclists to explore & train on the many roads & tracks in Tenerife. We take pride in the high quality of all our bikes – please take care of them and they will take care of you! Above all else we hope you enjoy cycling in Tenerife! We endeavour to provide the best possible service. We’re proud to say that 99% of our exisiting clients are extremely happy. Nevertheless, we recognise that sometimes things can go wrong (accidents), hence the following terms and conditions:

GENERAL CONDITIONS:
Our bicycles are not to be thrown around, purposely skidded, jumped or otherwise abused. No silly stunts, etc. Our bicycles are always cleaned, prepared & checked before they are rented out. It’s common courtesy to return them in the same state (I.e. clean and functioning, especially after prolonged use in the rain). You must endeavour to return each bicycle in the same condition in which it was lent to you. If it is not returned in the same state, with all tools and equipment, you are likely to be charged. Upon their return, bicycle(s) will be inspected & any damage assessed. If the bicycle does not meet our expectations, you will be held liable for cleaning and/or any repairs necessary (see table below).

OPTIONAL INSURANCE:
At the time of rental, you may select from one of three insurance options: “no insurance”, where you will held liable for all potential damage incurred to the bicycle; “€100 excess option”, where you will only be held liable up to the value of the deposit (€1 per day surcharge); and “zero excess” where you are covered for all possible bicycle damage (available for an additional €2/day). Note that this insurance coverage is limited to bicycle damage only. Unfortunately we cannot insure bicycles for theft (see the section on theft prevention below). Personal injury, death and third persons are also exluded from our optional insurance policy.

-UNINSURED BIKES

WHAT WE COVER:
Damage caused by normal wear and tear. This is limited to the following components:

  • spokes broken due to metal fatigue
  • normal tyre, chain and cassette wear
  • replacement brake pads, gear and brake cables

WHAT WE DO NOT COVER:
Replacement innertubes, tyres worn out by skidding on tarmac, missing tools, any other damage caused that is obviously your fault (for example stripped bolt threads, breakages caused by faulty/attempted repairs). You will be charged a cleaning fee of €2 if a bike is returned soaked in sweat and/or energy drink mixtures. Minor or major scratches (even if they are unintentional), metal fatigue (if it breaks, you are the one to pay). Broken shiftlevers caused by hamfisted operation. Cracked or broken frames. Bent rims or wheels that cannot be trued on the spot. Bicycle theft or loss. Here is a list of components and their associated replacement costs:

  • Entire bike lost or stolen: €700 for rigid MTBs and €1200 for road or full suspension bikes
  • Replacement frame: €400
  • Road shiftlevers: €150
  • MTB shiftlevers: €50
  • Carbon fork: €100
  • Suspension fork: €200
  • Wheel: €100
  • Tyre: €20
  • Seatpost: €20
  • Saddle: €30
  • Pump: €15
  • Inner tube: €5
  • Multitool misplaced or dropped €5
  • Cleaning fee: €2
  • additional parts not listed here will be charged at current retail prices

ROAD BIKE CLEANING SURCHARGE:
Whenever you go to a gymnasium (for example) you bring a towel & wipe the machine down after use. Same goes for our bikes! Sweat and other electrolytes are a direct cause of premature corrosion. Apart from that, there’s the issue of hygene. It’s also jut plain nice to ride a clean bike. We always supply clean bikes.

However we reserve the right to charge a €2 cleaning fee per bike (for road bikes; MTBs will remain exempt as getting dirty is and integral part of mountainbiking). The best & cheapest method to clean a bike is using mild soapy water applied to a cotton cloth, sponge or else a soft paper towel. If you deem yourself above cleaning your own sweat (i.e. you’re at a conference, meeting, don’t want to get dirty, can’t be bothered, etc) that’s fine, but you must pay us for the privilege.

MECHANICAL SUPPORT:
Tenerife is a fairly large island, so we don’t offer an “emergency pickup” service. Should something go wrong with one of our rental bikes, it is up to YOU to find your own way back to your hotel. Just like your local bike shop or bicycle manufacturer, no we don’t reimburse you for this journey! However, we recognise that mechanical failure is an inconvenience, not some kind of opportunity for profit that some businesses seem to think it is. If you believe a bike is unfit to ride for obvious safety reasons, the best course of action is to stop riding the bike and inform us as soon as possible (preferably by telephone not email).

We do our best to fix things promptly, either the same day or else overnight if that is not possible. Note that practically all bikeshops in Tenerife are closed Sundays and only open half day Saturday. These are our official hours: 9:00am – 1:00pm; 3:00pm – 8:00pm, GMT. (Monday – Saturday). Sms text messages are welcome between 8:00am and 10:00pm, 7 days a week.

We believe that bikes should run silently. However, some noises are extremely difficult to isolate or duplicate and then rectify quickly (eg: noises caused by cranksets, bottom brackets headsets and disc brakes). If the bike is rideable and you can live with it, the best option is to let us know before the end of the rental period so we can address the issue for the next customer.

Faulty rental bikes will be either repaired or replaced at our discretion. 90% of the time we have spare bikes in all sizes ready to go but during peak periods it’s impossible to have a backup bike available for every rider.

THEFT PREVENTION:
Bikes should be stored either in the room of your hotel/apartment or in a secure luggage room using the lock provided- under no circumstances are the bikes to be left un-locked outside when unattended!! A lock never offers 100% theft protection. The best deterrrent is to stay close to the bike at all times when you go out. We request that you do not leave bikes in cars overnight. Never leave a bicycle (locked or unlocked) in a public place, especially if it is visible from the street & definitely never at night time. That means bikes are not to be left on exposed balconies, for example. These simple measures drastically reduce the risk of opportunistic theft.

We ask for a security deposit to increase awareness & prevent theft, it’s not intended to rip you off. However, should a bicycle be lost or stolen, you will be liable for the current value of the bike written in the Tenerife-Training rental contract (not the replacement value, which is much more). Your security deposit will not be refunded and you will need to pay the difference. Therefore it’s up to YOU to ensure the bike doesn’t get stolen!

SPECIAL/OTHER CONDITIONS:
All bookings are subject to availability. We will only use your personal details in connection with your Booking arrangements. Some people ask the impossible of us, hence the following statement: if a rental bike is unavailable due to unforeseen damage or theft, we will not be held liable for all or part of your holiday expenses; the most we can offer is a full or partial refund of the original deposit! We go out of our way to offer polite & friendly service; however we also reserve the right to refuse service to any individual who shows rude, obnoxious or agressive behaviour.

REFUND POLICY:
Refunds are possible if a bike does not meet your expectations, minus any delivery charges. However, we do not offer refunds if it is a case of you simply “change your mind” at the last minute. Nor do we offer refunds for unused days during the rental period, for example due to bad weather.

ACCIDENTS:
Bicycle riders are inherently vulnerable road users; riding in a foreign country in extreme terrain is a risky activity. We do advise you to take out a comprehensive medical travel insurance policy that are available from any travel agent in your home country. Spain does has a reciprocal health agreement with most EU countries, including the UK. However, if you are found to be the cause of an accident, remember that you could potentially be liable for all resulting accident damage. At the time of writing, third party insurance for cyclists is not compulsory (not even for Spanish citizens), so just remember to take it easy! If you’re still reading this, know that most accidents we do see are the due to the rider’s own fault and no other vehicles are involved. It is often people misjudging corner speed and freaking out with the front and/or rear brake.

What are the best / biggest resort hotels in Puerto de la Cruz?

Hi, Leslie thanks for the initial feedback.

We were thinking of renting a car (big enough) to get the bikes in so we can easily get to the sites to do some mountain biking, although my partner had a severe skiing accident and hence should really just bike on forest rough track, volcano trails etc but not really “pure and dure” off road with all the shocks that come with it (the injury – the knee ligaments (cross ligament torn) and the rest (knee) in good stable rehabilitation building up muscle and strengthening the side ligaments. – hence I was almost contemplating for a triathlon bike ! although we just want to have some exercise to see the “paysage”. Anyway, that is were we are currently with our thoughts.

We are thinking to check in to : Gran Melia Palacio de Isora en Alcala so we can have all the exercise and possibly some comfort as well. First time in Tenerife, so we are just taking our bearings………..Possibly you can recommend a good hotel accommodation close to the mountain biking areas…………..on the web site I did see your indicated routes.

We are both about 1.72 cm tall and would need a medium frame.

Also, we were thinking possibly to make outing to Gomera and take the bikes with us !

Some thoughts appreciate your input as to where would be the best location to find accommodation to be close to the mountain biking actions. If we have the car to transport the bikes, perhaps that is not so much an issue. What do you think ?

Yes we would need two bikes from March 22 to 26 – 5 days.

Unusual, Dr. Leslie renting bikes………………are you working on your next book ?

keep smiling –

Hello Carmen,

Nice to hear from you again…

Gran Melia Palacio de Isora is certainly a grand hotel, but I don’t think it is in the best location for cycling trips. It is an isolated hotel away from all the resorts. It is similar to the Abama hotel in that respect, so have a look at that one too if that is what you are looking for: http://www.abamahotelresort.com/ (it has less cement outside and is greener than the Palacio de Isora). What’s the difference between the two hotels? It’s like the people who own Abama said “Let’s create a nice 5 star hotel” whereas the people who own the Palacio de Isora said “Let’s show people what we can do with all our money”. That’s just my opinion…

Personally I think the best mountainbiking is in the North of Tenerife. It’s more scenic & there are more tracks to explore.

For instance, there are about 5 flat roads that cross the La Orotava valley & it is mostly sheltered by the trees so it doesn’t get too hot. These are simple tracks with just a few small rocks and they won’t present any problems for your partner. Of course there are also other roads which have a greater difficulty level…

The only problem with taking the car is that you need to do a loop to go back to the starting point where the car is … this sometimes means lots of climbing is involved if you don’t plan it well (unless you are lucky enough to have someone drop you off and pick you up again). [Read more →]

Can you tell me more about the guided MTB rides?

I will be in Tenerife north between 20 to 30 July and would like to hire a mountain bike during this time. What cycling trips will you have available during this time and how much would they be? What locations would they be in, what grade and for how long?

The offorad cycling trips depend on the fitness of the other riders, but I can say that normally they are about 40km long and mostly “downhill”. We almost always start from 2000m altitude and head back down to sealevel over that sort of distance. The routes are mainly firetrails, with some rocks. Maximum ascent is usually 300 metres or so. We usually complete the rides in 2 to 3 hours.

Where we go is not set in concrete, and really depends on the day. For example if some riders find some parts too steep, too rocky, too easy, or the weather changes, we will alter the route right there and then. None of the rides are what I’d call “freeride” (so there are no big jumps or dropoffs).

To do the guided MTB rides, we request that you stay in either La Orotava or the Puerto de la Cruz resort area. We also have numerous MTBs available to rent, no problem.

Thanks very much,

Leslie.

Guided mountain bike tours?

Is it possible to arrange a guided mountain bike tour for 1 or 2 days? Road biking is pretty easy to do on our own, but we have found that with mountain biking it is nice to have some time with people that know the terrain.

Yes I offer guided MTB rides also, provided that you are staying in Puerto de la Cruz; these will cost an additional ~€35 each day per person.

Normally we catch the bus up to 2000m altitude, and start the MTB rides from there so the majority is going down… it is a special bus capable of taking a lot of bikes, but on public holidays & weekends, it is packed with downhillers!! If we don’t take the bus, someone has to go back up to the top to collect the vehicle, or I need to get another driver, and it isn’t so good for the environment either.

Metting point: Puerto de la Cruz bus station.
Departure time: usually 8:30am weekdays, 8:15am weekends.

If you are staying in one of the resorts in the south (Las Americas / Los Cristianos / Golf del Sur / Los Gigantes etc), then I can contact another MTB guide for you. It is more convenient for us if you can stay somewhere in the North of Tenerife, because otherwise we have to charge a small delivery fee to cover the cost of taking bikes to the South of Tenerife.

Anyway, I’m happy to advise you on different routes you can take on the other days you have the rental bikes… I also have some good maps to show you the MTB routes, but like you said it is preferable to do the rides with someone that knows the trails.

Thanks,
-Leslie.

Bike Shops in Tenerife?

Do you know of any good cycling shops out there, I couldn’t find any last time I was there, I really like exteondo clothing I think it’s spanish but its really hard to find over here, so was hoping to pick some up in tenerife.

Yes there are several decent bike shops on the island. The most noteworthy are:

– Gofis bici in La Longuera / El Toscal (road & MTBs). This is the one I go to most often!
– Bicistar in Puerto de la Cruz (road & MTBs)
– Bicicletas Gil in La Laguna (road & MTBs)
– Vadabici in La Laguna (mainly mountainbikes)
– Bicisport in Los Cristianos (mainly road bikes)
– Bike Point in El Medano (focus is on MTBs)

Have a look here for the exact street addresses & contact details.