Today, I’m sat in my office in Kings Cross looking out the window at the relentless rain and grey cloud rolling across London. What better way to escape and cheer myself up than a post about cycling in sunny Tenerife?
This week I’m featuring a guest post from Michael Lindsay. Some of you may remember him from previous posts, formerly under the name of The Boyfriend’s Dad. Michael recently spent a week cycling in Tenerife, and has blogged about his experience…
“So what do you do with a week off in February and the weather is cold in the UK”, I innocently asked in the office! One of my colleagues suggested a cycling holiday in Tenerife and after a quick search on Google I had booked a weeks cycling with Tenerife Bike Training.
I flew to Tenerife and arrived for the week thinking I wasn’t a bad cyclist and was in reasonable shape and thought that this would be a great “holiday”.
Having picked up my hire bike. A Pinarello Razha T2 with D12 electronic gear set (nice bike) I joined my eight fellow cyclists for the trial ride along the coast. I quickly realised that I was not here for a relaxing holiday but that I had joined a weeks long training camp and it certainly wasn’t going to be a leisurely cycle! We set off into 25 mph head winds and the elite squad soon left a couple of us in their wake!
Day Two started the climbing with a short ride to Vilaflor and I started to get accustomed to the fact that most of the week was going to be spent riding up a big hill and then coming down again. We did however find some excellent coffee stops which helped to fuel the journey.
Kings Day was an 80km ride to the top of Mount Teide and was my first experience of a continuos 18km steady climb at around 7 per cent gradient. It was a great achievement and the scenery was unbelievable. The journey back down again started to teach me how to deal with a 30km decent on switch backs and Tenerife tourists in cars that don’t know which side of the road is the right one!
Our next day was called “recovery day” – a 60km ride with a climb of 4,500ft and while it did give us an opportunity to have lunch in the sun at our now usual stop in Vilaflor it was still a good days cycling.
The highlight of the week was Queens day. A 140km ride ascending 10,000ft and a continuous 32km climb up to the top of Mount Teide again.
The ride gave some of the most challenging cycling Tenerife has to offer including the longest most continuous climb in Europe – I know know the reason why the professional teams go to Tenerife for their training camps. It also provided the opportunity to see the island at its best and the mixture between green forest and lunar landscape is amazing.
By this stage of the week my cycling buddy and I knew what we needed to to and we drove hard to get our well deserved break at the Parador Hotel at the top of the mountain. We enjoyed the break as we then watched all the other cyclists head up and down the volcano!
The last days ride gave the opportunity to cycle up the most beautiful road on the island and at 12km and a mere 6 per cent gradient was a very enjoyable morning out. The day was made all the better by a fantastic paella party at the bottom of the decent organized by the Mum of the tour organizer. It was a great end to a very enjoyable week.
So if you are ever looking for something to do with a week off and want to head to the sun and have a “holiday” riding some 250 miles and climbing over 30,000ft (Everest is 29,029ft) check out the Volcano Tour with Tenerife Bike Training.
It’s a family run business and Alberto and Marco Delgado will ensure you have a fantastic time. I’ve signed up for next year but think that I may do a bit more training before I head out!