Saturday, April 7, 2012

Time is ticking away here in tenerife and i have been spending a rather large amount of it doing what i came here to do, ride my bicycle. In the past 3 days my trusty training partner and i have knocked out 18hrs of riding and climed the equivalent of 2 accents of mt everest. So basically if we have not been going up we have been going down with not a lot of flat groung in between, its enough to make you feel sea sick at times but on the whole its been a very enjoyable 3 days. For me the hrs in the mountains are required simply to wake up my climbing pins again which have been put to sleep in the past 6 weeks since I left aus. Unfortunately feeling comfortable in the mountains take a very large amount of time gaining altitude and conversely if don't do it for a short time you feel like you are starting from scratch all over again. So inlight of that my objective has just been scaleing as many m of altitude as I can and I am fortunate that ivan has the same thing in mind at the moment making us a pretty good training combo.

The island of tenerife is pretty spectacular. I have no idea of the exact statistics but will endevour to find out before I leave on tuesday. At a guess however I assume its no more than between 80-100km in length and goes mountainous directly from the seaside so all the towns as a result as water views, great town planning by the spaniards! So the rds go upwards from every corner of the island with all rds leading to where we are staying at the islands major tourist attraction, the volcano el teide. So 2500 of climbing awaits once you end up by the seaside on the bike and no matter which of the endless routes you choose its a 45-55km climb back to the hotel. As you can imagine you go through quite the climate changes on the way up. Down low you have the bannana plantations, next up come the barron dry land, rain forest follows this then once within 10km of the base of the volcano you reach the rocky lava type fields which also means the start of bumby broken rds which is perhaps the only negative of the training up high in tenerife. The fact the rd are so cracked is a subtle reminder that the is a live volcano in the region and that everything in the vercinity is moving a little, hopfully it does not decide to really wake up and move a lot! Down below 1500m altitude the rds are mostly good so can't complain about that at all. It is certainly like no place I have trained before so can't draw any comparisons at all but one thing is certain that I will be back in a flash should the opportunity arrise in the future.

Once off the bike the hotel is magic. At the moment there are many of the worlds top cyclists staying the same hotel so Its a great opportunity to be around riders like brad wiggens, vincenzo nibali and of course basso. But even better still is that my good mate tassie and one of the worlds best ritchie porte is also here and has been my daily sauna comadre where have a good old fashioned aussie chin wag and catch up on who's who in the zoo. You certainly are reminded that it is a jolly small world when you go to a tiny island somwhere between europe and africa, check into a hotel at the foot of a volcano and run into one of your good mates from tassie. If you planning a trip here then let offer you the best advice I can which I also gave ritchie. He ask what he should pack and I said don't forget your blue bonds singlet as it could be freezing and you will need it to keep you warm at night or could be balmy so you will need to maximize tanning opportunities aswell as looking exceptionally stylish in the process!!

So that's a little from the island of tenerife, tomorrow is easter so we are for a special lunch at the local italian restaurante which will no doubt be a unique experience and I will be certain to publish a full report following the festive occasion.

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