There are only 4 weeks to go before Mike and Pete set off on their mountain bike adventure across Spain. 1,000 km of back roads and tracks on plains and mountains lie ahead of them along the Via de la Plata, a lesser known pilgrim route between Seville and Santiago de la Compostela.
Graham (Carningli Bike Hire) is one of the group of friends supporting Mike’s pre-trip fitness drive, so on their recent visit to the Beara in South West Ireland a few bike outings were a must.
The peninsula is hilly: the Caha Mountains form its spine, with little flat ground between mountain and sea. Magnificent views across to the ring of Kerry to the North, Bantry Bay, South and the Atlantic, West are breathtaking on a fine day – that is if the Atlantic gales have not already taken your breath away.
One route started at sea level in the fishing port of Castletownbere. After a stiff climb over the ridge, the West wind nearly blew them off their bikes on the track down past the abandoned copper mines to Allihies, in the far West. A German tourist took pity on them at the local shop, plying them with almond slices, which put the strength in their legs to take them along roads to ‘Town.’