Ponderosa, Mountian biking Bansko

 Mountain biking Bansko

Ponderosa trail map, Mountian biking Bansko
Ponderosa, Mountian biking Bansko

For the first day of The Road to Nowhere MTB rally I decided to use a totally different part of our region. Traditionally for events concerning Mountain biking Bansko I have worked variations of established trails on the north side of Pirin. Some sort of mix between Perfect day  and Dead Dog  on day one and then laps sprinting around Foxy Lady  for day two.

This year I decided to go into the Rila and use one of our less used tracks, Ponderosa. Normally Ponderosa starts from Predel. The border between our little valley and the outside world. The trail is a long slow climb up into the Rila followed by a  fast and furious descent back to the valley floor. For the race we started at Bansko Royal Towers hotel and followed some of Perfect day out to the golf course and then on and up to Predel I love this route past the golf course, the views both north and south are fantastic.The youthful alpine peaks of Pirin rise up almost vertically above you while the more gentle, venerable curves of  Rila roll off into the north.

The Profile of the trail looks intimidating with it’s great big hump, in reality it is not too bad. It is a long slow climb, I get off and walk a couple of the steeper sections and have the odd rest but all in all it is worth it as once you get to the top the trail rolls along nicely for a few miles and then plunges down towards the valley for 10 miles on a wide well maintained forest road.  Pay back time, all the slow sweaty work getting to the top now becomes and heart thumping blood boiling charge!

Mountain biking Bansko doesn’t have to be all about Bansko! I’d suggest stopping in the centre of Razlog on your way back to sip a cold one in the park! Razlog town hall has done a great job making the centre a little haven of green tranquillity.

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