‘Not Far From Home’: Iago Garay and Friends in Basque Country

We go North! Two months of lockdown gave us plenty of time to plan for our next adventure. We were eager to jump on our bikes again and ride some trails, and if there is a place that has plenty of trails to ride is the Basque Country!

We got in touch with the guys at Basque MTB and asked them if they would be able to give us a small tour. Luckily for us, the coronavirus had cleared their schedules, so the first week travel was allowed between provinces in Spain we loaded the vans and headed their way!

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Basque MTB has to be one of the first MTB-Enduro guiding companies ever created in Spain and you can tell they have a lot of experience organizing awesome trips!

Doug and Igor welcomed us into their backyard with open arms and we had an awesome time riding a great mix of trails around Hondarribia, right on the border with France.

The first day delivered a classic Basque vibe, we were taken to a one of the tallest mountains around there. These mountains have a lot of history and we used a mix of hiking trails and old mountain railroads to make our way down the mountain. The rain and the fog had left the trails with a good moisture, just what you would expect to find up north during the spring, making for a pretty good time sliding around the wet roots and shiny rocks. All the way down you can find remains of other times, when the mountain was booming with the mine. Old beautiful stone houses and tunnels dug through the rock connecting the top to the city and the port.

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Any good trip where Sergio Layos comes along will have a stop at a skatepark. Since I know Sergio I have been riding more and more skatepark, but my progression is pretty slow because I spend most of the time just mesmerized with Sergio’s riding.

After the skatepark sesh we tried to find a spot where it wasn’t raining so we could shoot. We have heard about this cool trail near Zarautz so we had to check it out. It ended up being some of the most perfect and fun corners we had hit in a while, it was like they were made for synchronized biking!

The end of the day was spent riding the iconic Jaizkibel mountain, between Hondarribia and San Sebastian. Full of hiking trails that turn out to be really fun on a bike!

The trip continued on some magical woods near Oiartzun and a big day on the bike. The beech forest offered some beautiful views and flowy trails covered in leaves where thanks to our guide Igor we found the best spots to play around!

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Any trip to the Basque country needs to have Pintxos and Txakoli. That turned out to be the perfect end to our trip, reminiscing on the good times had and already planning the next trip back to ride with the Basque MTB guys!

We would like to say a huge thanks to Basque MTB for all the help guiding and with the logistics.

And thanks to our sponsors SMITH optics, DYEDbro, Santa Cruz Bicycles and questionmarkMTB.

All photos by Kike Abelleira
Video by Nacho Trueba
Words by Iago Garay

Catch the first episode of ‘Not Far From Home’ HERE.

This article originally appeared on Bikemag.com and was republished with permission.

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