Cycling Sant Pere Màrtir, Barcelona

Start / Finish: Sant Just Desvern, Barcelona, Spain
Distance: 15km
Ascent: 400m
Duration: 1 hour 28 minutes
Other Routes Touched: PRC-164, PRC-171, Carretera de les Aigües

This was the first of 2 unexpected micro-adventures on a business trip to Barcelona. Timi was there for a conference and I tagged along on a combo of working-from-hotel and a Friday off. While we were there we caught up with an old friend from work who now lives in the city. I didn't think twice when he offered to take me on a evening's ride in the nearby mountains.

I've been to Barcelona a few times and always loved it. Its has the right mix of culture, coast, city and access to mountains. It's always been a potential future place to live and this trip only reconfirmed that.

The ride started in Sant Just Desvern, a suburb to the West of the city. From here you can be off road and climbing the trails within 15 minutes. My friend knew the route well and I was in the rare situation of just following along and not really knowing where we were heading. By KM 5 were were up on the Carretera de les Aigües with outstanding views over the city.

From here there's loads of options including a longer route to Mt Tibidabo. Instead we chose to climb Sant Pere Màrtir, the nearest peak before heading back. Its not a summit you can't easily miss as the giant transmitter can be seen for miles.

By the time we reached the top it was dark and I wimped out of cycling the steep 100m first section on the other side. The combo of my weird nervousness of slipping, the dark and my lack of helmet all kicked in. Beyond that first section the rest of the descent was an amazing ride back through the trails, mountain roads and town to the start.

Richard gowerComment