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ADV EventsBike RallysHISS Rally 2014 - Aragon - June 16-20, 2014

HISS Rally 2014 – Aragon – June 16-20, 2014

 Five days of fun and frolics in the mountains of Teruel, Spain.

Published on 03.28.2014
HISS Rally 2014 - Aragon

Overview

H.I.S.S. – High Intensity Sojourns in Spain

The HISS Rally 2014 – Aragon is five days of fun and frolics in the mountains of Teruel, one of Spain’s least populated regions in the South of Aragón. HISS rallies are informal with no fixed groups, no competitions and no pressure to perform. Rather riders help each other have a great time.


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The Spanish Biker’s guides to over 600 kms of wild trails are legendary, with up to five ‘sections’ each with different characteristics, e.g. dense forest, wild mountains, summit romps . . . all accessible to all riders and bikes.

About the Venue 

The ‘Sistema Iberico’ is the range on mountains that runs roughly north-south  right across Spain between Madrid and Zaragossa. Unlike the Pyrenees, these mountains are very ancient so they tend to be well eroded.  Like the highlands of Scotland, there are no ‘Alpine’ landscapes.  Furthermore, the Sistema Iberica is much larger than the highlands, being some 500 kms (310 miles) in length and having six peaks of over 2,000 metres, the highest being Moncayo 2,313 metres (7,588 feet). This ‘gentle’ profile makes these high mountains much more accessible to trail riding than the Pyrenees, indeed the summit of Javalambre, (2,020 metres) the fourth highest mountain in the system has four distinct trails to the top* – all of which are in the HISS itinerary, naturally. (* OK, there’s a ski resort and various observatories up here too, so road bikers can get there as well with a bit of effort over the last few hundred metres ! )

Trails have been selected that form itineraries around distinct mountain ranges, in this case four: the Sierra de Albarracín, the Montes Universales, the Sierra de Javalambre and the Maestrazgo ranges. The first two ranges are adjacent to the base camp whiles the latter are on the eastern section; separated from the center by the city of Teruel and the valley of its river, the Turia, which exits to the sea at Valencia. But it is possible to cross this ‘barrier’ almost exclusively on trails while the main and secondary roads in the whole region are among the best there are in Spain!

Similar to the Pyrenees, HISS is possible to ride as a ‘circumnavigation’ on roads as opposed to trails. Both roads and trails radiate out from the base camp at Albarracín. The Teruel HISS covers a much more extensive range than the Pyrenees and the event was planned with bigger bikes in mind. Be assured that these trails and roads are ideal for any Adventure Bike Rider!

The base in Albarracín is a real gem – one of numerous towns, technically a city but it’s hardly more than a village, that claims to be the most beautiful in Spain. There’s a significant amount of tourism, but it’s in no way a tourist trap; rather there is plenty of infrastructure, bars, restaurants, etc.

The campsite is considered to be one of the best in Spain. An entire section of the campsite has been secured for HISS,  including a private toilet/shower bloc. There is a good bar/restaurant that does fixed price menus in the evenings as well as the usual pizzas, grills, etc. Furthermore, there is an enclosed barbecue which is built inside a little stone building. This is shared with other campers, but it’s a valuable resource in case of bad weather.

The site is about five to six hours ride from the Pyrenean border crossing at the Portalet pass – which compares well with two hours to the Pyrenees HISS from the French border at the Val d’Aran. It’s also closer to the coastal resort areas in Valencia and Alicante and very close to routes to and from Morocco, which some HISS veterans did along the way!

Event Organizer: H.I.S.S.

To see the full event details click here.
Also, see the rally topic on Adventure Bike Rider Forum (which also has links to earlier rally trip reports)

Author: Ken Pozak
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