Being a local from the Sierra de Madrid, it is sometimes easy to take for granted the beautiful landscapes, and great trails, that some unfortunate souls would give anything to have at their back door. Not many people know that Spain’s capital is bordered on the North by three mountain ranges, which include the Sierra de Guadarrama, Sierra Norte and the Sierra de Gredos. This chain of mountains has more than 3,500 Square kilometers full of rich history, diversity, and above all, lots of singletrack. In the Sierra de Madrid we can ride in the high mountains, deep forest, rocky hills, and everything in between. It´s a mountain biker’s dream with a perfect weather for riding. When you are a local, you get so used to it, that you can easily forget how unique it is to be able to ride year round through ancient trails, arrive at medieval castles, or to enjoy the best tapas in the world after a ride.
When friends from outside of Madrid come to ride with us, it helps us to realize what we really have available in our backyard. I love the moment when I am riding with them and they cannot stop smiling and saying: “I cannot believe we are only a 40 minute drive to Madrid downtown”. Those smiles seem to get bigger after the ride, when we enjoy wonderful tapas, and some post ride beverages, while reviewing the best moments of the day. To share this joy with others and see their smiles is definitely priceless!
With all that in mind, I started formulating an idea of how to share our trails, and riding philosophy with the rest of the world, in a purpose of delivering happiness. I decided to get together with some of my riding buddies and share my thoughts. Some of my friends have become professional racers, others became professional guides, and all of them ride because they love it. I knew their input would be essential in formulating a successful plan.
We all agreed that the best way to find inspiration would be to meet in a traditional chalet in the core of the Sierra de Madrid, where riding and creativity come together. It was here, where the notion of creating an enduro focused, Madrid based, mountain bike holidays company came to light. After some great riding, and a few cervezas, we started brainstorming about the best names for our new idea. Eventually, we all agreed that BlackTown was a good name. We received our inspiration from Los Pueblos Negros, which is one of those special areas of the Sierra. It is a group of tiny, ancient villages, constructed primarily out of black slate, giving them the look of real black houses. It is a magical spot where the riding is fantastic, and a special energy floats in the air. We also decided on a logo for our future project, the Iberian Wolf. The Iberian Wolf is an animal that has been persecuted for years, almost to the point of extinction, but is slowly making its way back to the Sierra from the north and south of Spain. Just like the wolf hunts for, and chases down its prey, we are constantly hunting for new trails to ride. Most of the time, we feel like the wolf chasing down his prey; however, our prey does not have the shape of a sheep, but the shape of a perfect, flowy singletrack in the middle of the mountain. The combination of the spirit of the Black Towns and the Wolf makes the perfect match for our philosophy of riding: full of energy, natural inspiration and constant hunger for new single tracks.
This is the story of BlackTown Trails. Our new mountain bike holidays company, created by local riders of La Sierra de Madrid, focused on enduro, and with the goal of putting a smile on our customer’s faces. We are committed to delivering the highest standard of quality, thanks to our local professional guides, all-inclusive concept, with accommodation in our exclusive Chalet, and the energy that only the Sierra de Madrid can deliver.
We deliver happiness, we are smile creators.
Come join us!
Words: Félix Torija.
Photography: Ale Cubino .
Riders: Emilio García, Iago Garay, Rafa Molina, Félix Torija.
Special thanks: Mariano Gon ( www.santacruzbicycles.com ), Pedro Gonzalez (www.ltmracing.com ) .