Trail School Pyrenees

The school is run by Austin's right-hand man - Dai Jones  

General Outline

  • This project is aimed at total beginners
  • You don’t need ANY off-road experience
  • Build trail-riding confidence in a world-class setting
  • I can provide a simple trail bike if you so desire
  • This project is ONLY for trail bikes

Austin's Endorsement…

Dai Jones is my associate on the Mini Mondo project and has proved himself a world class expedition leader. During our time in Spain, customers kept telling me how much they had learned whilst trail-riding in Dai’s squad. His patient, clear and knowledgeable approach is a gift that many instructors on the scene could do well to emulate. It is truly rare to find a coach who has such empathy with the ‘cautious beginner’. It is this kid glove and ‘still small voice of calm’ approach that makes Dai my first choice for anyone who needs to build skill in a testosterone-free environment. I trust him, so will you.

 

Welcome to the Trail School Pyrenees. This project is designed to be a golden opportunity to advance your riding skills massively, make great like-minded friends, enjoy some of Europe’s premier off-tarmac routes and enjoy great accommodation, food and company. You won’t ride the same trail twice!



This project was born out of the 2016 Mini Mondo Wilderness Project. It was clear that many riders needed some low pressure ‘quiet’ riding to build skill and confidence. For some people Mini Mondo was a little too intense. The Trail School aims to be a foundation course to help novices and starter adventure riders.



Where?

The novice week is based out of a charming 17th Century farmhouse called ‘Cal Xiu’ (pronounced Cal Choo). It has been converted into a self-contained holiday home. Although only 8 miles from the town of Berga (Catalunya), Cal Xiu is incredibly isolated. It sports an acre of gardens, a private river and its own spring for filling up those hydra-paks! Have a closer look here:

Cal Xiu Website



The 'Trail School Extra' is based out of Organya, Catalunya.

When?

We assemble at 4pm sharp on the first day, settle into the accommodation and cook supper together. We will then have 5 full days riding and 6 nights at Cal Xiu. dispersing on the morning of the last day.

15th - 21st June 2019 - Organya, Catalunya -

Trail School Extra - 4 places left (not for novices)

 

24th - 30th June 2019 - 6 places left - Cal Xiu, Berga - ideal for novices

What?

I have put together a structured program of different riding skills which are designed to help build confidence and deliver a real sense of fast improvement that can be used for the rest of the week or indeed the rest of your riding life. We will start very gently on easy open trails that will help get some basics nailed and by the end of the week you will be confident attacking some tough climbs and scary descents. The mornings will be structured learning with afternoons having a more relaxed feel with plenty of time to hone your new found skills. All the training will take part whilst trail riding so there will also be a massive sense of travel whilst improving. I’m looking forward to seeing some smaller bikes and this is definitely the right trip for you, remember I can organise a hire bike for you if you don’t own one. Your bike will need to be able to cover 100 miles between fill up’s or bring some extra vessels to carry fuel. I will have my van standing by to collect any break downs once we get your bike back to tarmac so make sure your bike is tip top with heavy-duty inner tubes..



The final day will be a monster day out with less time spent on skills and more time travelling, this is designed to ensure you leave feeling you are super confident to take on our Mini Mondo trip or enter one of Austin's Spanish Navigation events next year. We may even finish with an ascent of ‘heart attack hill’ a 2 mile long 2500 metre climb with plenty of loose pineapple size boulders to challenge you. 



How?

We will be self-catering at Cal Xiu and all chores will be on a rota. This means you need to be happy to pull your weight, this is no luxury relaxing break. We also need to be patient with each other on the trails and understand people learn at differing rates, we are a team and can only progress together, if this sounds a bit boring then it isn’t for you. I’m looking for a group of beginners/ improvers, if you are already proficient at riding off road then it will be very frustrating so please don’t come - you will hate it.

The accommodation comprises a triple and twin room and a double, so expect to share. I aim to keep to a sharp start time each morning with days being between 6 and 8 hours on the bikes, you will however have plenty of down time in the evening for socialising and admin. I aim for us to have a self-policing approach so I am spared the aggravation of chasing people to be ready to leave on time.

I will provide all food and drink, it will be fairly basic fayre and you guys will be cooking and cleaning yourselves. Coffee, toast and cereal breakfast. Mountain-top picnics for lunch (Restaurant lunch is always an option at your expense) and great home-cooked evening meals.

Beer and cheap wine all included, but seriously, if anyone gets drunk they will hold up the group the following day!! Your petrol costs are covered once you arrive.

The accommodation is also included.

£750 per person

£200 Non-refundable deposit secures a place.

New for 2019- Big bike Tarmac classics and graded Mountain trails.

Running TSP in 2017 it became apparent that the guys on bike bikes really struggled with the physical challenge of a week’s off road riding, I have taken the choice away by insisting on smaller trail bikes for 2018. Fear not if you want to get some tips on riding your bigger bikes then I’ve got an amazing package tailored especially for you. There are hundreds of miles of amazing high altitude gravel trails that offer direct access into the Pyrenees wilderness. The problem is that they don’t all string together, so I have handpicked some of the best twisty tarmac mountain roads which will be use to fill the gaps.

I will be on hand to guide you throughout the day, offer some hot tips and encouragement to ensure your riding progresses nicely as the week goes on. This is very much a taste of off road riding with some awesome road riding thrown in for good measure.

Absolutely no insurance of any kind is included in this project. Ensure you have your EHIC card and your own vehicle and holiday insurance to cover you in the eventuality of a serious drama.

Both trips are £750 per person

£200 Non-refundable deposit secures a place.

STOP PRESS - Trail School extra! 

 If you already have experience as a trail rider and want fast track to the next level then I have just what you are looking for. During this week we will cover more miles and include steeper more technical trails. The recipe remains the same, we progress together as a team and build skills through patient repetition of various drills in the morning session. The afternoon session will be a chance to reinforce all that you have learned whilst trail riding in the National parks of the high Pyrenees. This week is ideal for those who have already attended Trail School Pyrenees at Cal Xiu or those who already have a grounding in trail riding but want an intensive physical week of something more challenging. I have chosen to host this week in Organya as the area offers a fresh arena of challenges as well as a huge net work of gob smacking world class trails.

WARNING

Off Road Motorcycling is extremely dangerous, you could be killed or suffer a life changing injury!!!!!


To express an initial interest please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or to have a chat call 07854970601

 

 
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River ford crossings are a common feature of this rugged landscape.

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Be prepared to pick up the odd battle scar on your bike, it is inevitable that you will drop your bike from time to time, so get protected, hand guards and crash bars are a must.

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As you develop your skills we will progress onto more broken terrain, check these guys out, it's all about confidence!

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If you aspire to ride like these guys then TSP is the place to to start!

dai jones 2

Welcome to Cal Xiu!

dai jones 3

Make a big Splash in the plunge pool.

0263A mountain top briefing, not a bad place to learn your craft.

Dai Jones

Your trainer Dai says: "I've logged thousands of miles of trails in this area over the last 10 years, so rest assured the trails will be appropriate for beginners and grow in difficulty as your confidence and skill improve through out the week".