Mountain Biking & Touring
Tour Des Aspens - Colorado
[ 4 days, 3 nights ] ............. $595.00 Per Person
Get a look at some Colorado gold,
this fall, as the Aspens change their color.
There is nothing as spectacular as the changing of the
Colorado. We will drive to the top of independence Pass where we
will let you out to ride down into
Aspen (19 miles). We'll regroup
at the Jerome Hotel and continue on to the Red Stone Inn for a little
and a delicious dinner.
We will head up McClurre Pass. This is one of the most beautiful
passes in Colorado. The paved road winds gradually up to the
summit of 9,000 feet. We will be surrounded by large golden aspens
and the clear skies of Colorado. Once on top, we will decend for
twenty miles until we reach the Kebler Pass turn off. We have lunch
and follow the dirt road uphill to the Irwin Lodge. (A little ride in
the van is helpfull on this section!) There few places in Colorado
situated in such a breathtaking area as the Irwin Lodge. Generating
their own electricity dictates being in bed by 12:00, if you can make
it that long.. 50 miles.
Today begins with a short hike behind the Irwin Lodge to watch
the sun come up over the Rocky Mountains. After breakfast, we
will begin our downhill ride on Ohio Creek Pass. Lunch is served
next to a beaver pond in the middle of a large aspen grove.The
afternoon ride will take us to Almont, a small community ten miles
outside of Gunnison. The Lost Canyon Resort, situated on the
Gunnison River, will be our host for the evening. We'll head to
Crested Butte for dinner.. 22 easy miles.
We will cycle to the Taylor Reserrvoir after a leisurely brunch on
the shores of the Gunnison. Snachs are served at the reservoir to
prepare for the optional ride to the top of Cottonwood Pass. The
last strech is 18 miles downhill into Buena Vista. The van will get
us back to Colorado Springs on Sunday at approximately 7:00 pm.
The High Road to SantaFe - New Mexico
[ 3 days, 2 nights ] ............. $415.00 Per Person
This tour is designed to enjoy the beauty of the Southwest.
The vanswill depart Colorado Springs on Friday, May 17th at 10:00 am.
All transportation to and from
Taos and Santa Fe, all accommdationsat delux Bed & Breakfasts, breakfasts and lunches - except lunchon Sunday guides, maps, sag
support with food and beverages, and t-shirts.
Price does not include dinners and lunch on Sunday.
stop will be for lunch in San Luis at Emma's cafe.Emma has promised us the world's best green chile to prepare us forour cycling adventure.
After lunch we'll head for Taos, either on bikesor in the an.Once in Taos we will be staying at the Taos Country Inn.Here we will meet up
with Jon Young, who will be our guide for the weekend.Jon has lived in the Southwest all his life and is an expert on southwestculture.
Saturday morning we'll head for Santa Fe on the High Road.Thisroad will take us through spectacular mountain
scenery, past slopesof ponderosa, aspen, fir and villages founded by early Spanish settlersand missionaries ...... Nambe, Cundiyo, Truchas.
Our final destinationfor the evening will be Chimayo, which is noted for it's penitent chapel,the Santuario de Chimayo, built in 1817.
The only miraculous shrinein the U.S., the Santuario is beleived to hold curative powers fromdirt in a well near the alter. Our night will be
spent at the Haciendade Chimayo,a beautiful Bed & Breakfast situated across from thechurch.
On Sunday we will head for
Santa Fe. The ride should take approximatelythree hours, which will leave acouple of hours for shopping before thevan leaves for
Colorado Springs about 2:30.
Nepal Trek - Mustang...ALost Tibetal Kingdom
The Himalayas for centuries have fascinated people,while still today their lofty peaks keep hidden many a mystery...
For thousands of years priest, monks and scholars have gone there todie...in the land of the lost horizon.
Departure/Return.............. October 16th throughNovember 22nd
Physical Aspects............. Moderate to Strenuous, remote trekking
Accommodations....First Class (Nepal Standards), camping on trek
Price................ Land Cost - Trekking ...... $3,060.00
......................... Biking ................................. $4,125.00
......................... Gov't Permit fees ............... $ ,730.00
......................... Approximate Air Fare ...... $1,855.00
Costa Rica - Overland Eco Tour
A fascinating countrty rich in natural resourses... rain forest, highland cloud forest, unusual
wildlife, rain forest, volcanoes, beautiful rivers, exceptional birdlife and friendly people. A great adventure not far from the U.S.
Costa Rica slideshow
Departures........... January - through - March
You must be flexible, departures times may vary slightly ..... call for exact dates
Groups Size limited to 12, Private and semi-private trips available
Physical Aspects.................... Easy / Moderate
Accomdations........... Moderate / Lodge
Price...8 Days........ Land Cost ........ $1,375.00
Price...12 Days....... Land Cost ........ $1,885.00
Tour Includes: All accomodations, breakfasts, lunches and dinner, knowledgeable guides, all ground transportation, boarding pass for ferry, park fees, horses for trip to volcano and boats for river & lake excursions.
Ireland - "The GreatIrish Pub Ride"
This tour begins in the lively town of Killarney,located in the southwest corner of Ireland. Killarney has been the inspirationof poets and painters four centuries. You can visit some of Killarney'shistorical sights like: St. Mary's Cathedral, Franciscan Friary,
DeenackLodge..(thatched cottages), Ross Castle, Muckross Abbey, Killegy Church,etc.
Then it's off to bike around the Ring of Kerry
and gradually work ourway to the Dingle Peninsula. Along the way we visit towns like Sneem,Waterville, Portmagee, Glenbeigh and Dingle.
The verage days will consistof approximately 25 miles. Sights and sounds are too numerous to mention.The food and the singing pubs are
always at their best.
This is one of the most incredibale historical tours offered.
Departure/Return........... Late June / Early July ... call for exactdates
Physical Aspects.................... Moderate
Accomdations........... Bed & Brakfasts
Price........... Land Cost ........ $ 2,025.00
Patagonia - "
The Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego By Bike "
MOUNTAIN BIKE ADVENTURE
6 Days, 6 Nights ............. $ 1,784.00
Day 1.Río Grande. Arrival at the airport of RíoGrande and
transfer to the hotel.
Day 2.Río Grande - Yehuin Lake.
Breakfast. Departure from Río Grande travelling along the Estancias(Ranches) route. During this journey you will see
how the bushes overthe mountains disappear to give way to an herbaceous vegetation idealfor sheep raising. Arrival to the Yehuin Lake.
Check in at the hotel.Dinner. Staying at the hostelry.
Distance covered: 70 kilometers.
Day 3.Lago Yehuin Breakfast. Free day for resting and walkingthrough the area. Dinner and staying at the hostelry.
Day 4.Lago Yehuin - Lago Escondido Breakfast. Departure fromYehuin lake passing by the Fagnano lake which is
110 kilometers longand whose waters flow into the Pacific Ocean through the Azopardo river.In this area the Andean landscape turns
into undulating plateaus. Lunchbox during the trip. Arrival at the hostelry. Dinner. Staying over night.
Distance covered: 95 kilometers.
Day 5.Lago Escondido - Ushuaia. Breakfast. Beggining of the journey
from the Escondido lake to the southernmost city in the world, passingby very beautiful sites. Arrival to the Garibaldi Pass
(430 m. abovesea level), the highest spot from where you will be able to watch theEscondido and Fagnano lakes. The Carbajal Valley
where the Fuegian Cordillerashows its hanging glaciers. The cordillera in Tierra del Fuego is nothigher than 1500 m. Lunch box and
refreshments. Arrival in Ushuaia andtransfer to the hotel. Dinner.
Distance covered: 70 kilometers.
We invite you to travel through the southern extreme of the continentin a particular way ... The southern area of the Main Island
of Tierradel Fuego will let you go through not only the Andean Patagonian environmentin conjunction with the marine environment,
but also discover the centralarea of the lakes, the transitional zone (ecotono) and the cattle-raisingregion or the fuegian steppe.
Day 6: Ushuaia. Breakfast
Departure to the National Park Tierra del Fuego, surrounded by a
wonderfulscenery of snowed hills, cascades, rivers and forests.During the tourwe will visit an area where the Nature is still in a
pristine stage;itwill be possible to watch wide areas of high forests (lenga: Nothofaguspumilio) together with a great variety of
fuegian flora (or vegetation).Lunch box during the tour. Returning to the hotel in the evening.Dinner.Stayingover.
Day 7:Ushuaia. Transfer from the hotel to the airport.
Flight from U.S. to San Jose / overnight at the Embassador Hotel
REVENTAZON RIVER / OVERNIGHT POCHOTEL ( RAFT )
From the northeast end of the Cachi Lake flows one
of the more scenicand exciting rivers in Costa Rica, the Reventazon. It tumbles from thelake at 1000 meters above sea level and down
the eastern slopes of themountains to the Caribbean lowlands. This river is considered a havenfor the white water rafters and kayakers.
We will run class two andthree rapids.
TURRIALBA VOLCANO. OVERNIGHT AT THE POCHOTEL. ( HIKE )
This small town is attractively perched on the slopes of the CordilleraCentral at an elevation 650 meters above sea level.
The Rio Turrialbaflows into the Reventazon. The town used to be the major stopping pointon the old highway from San Jose to
Limon, but since the opening ofthe new highway via Guapiles, Turrrialba has been bypassed by travelersto the coast and has
suffered economically. Nevertheless, it is a pleasanttown and makes a good base for nearby excursions.
This volcano is 3328 meters high. Active volcano is actually part ofthe Irazu volcanic massif, but it is more remote
and difficult to getto. The name of the volcano was coined by the early Spanish settlerswho named it Torre Alba or "white
tower" for the plumes ofsmoke pouring from its summit in early days. The last eruption was in1866 and today the volcano
lies dormant, but it is likely that the tranquilfarmlands on Turrialba's fertile soil will again be disturbed by earthshattering explosions
sometime in the future. The summit has three craters,of which the middle one is the largest. This is the only one which stillshows signs
of activity with fumarloes of steam and sulphur. Below thesummit there is a montane rain and cloud forest, dripping with moistureand
mosses, full of ferns, bromeliads and even strands of bamboo.
THE PACUARE RIVER, CLASS III & IV. NIGHT AT THE COLORADO LODGE (RAFT )
The Pacuare is the next
major river valley east of the Reventazon. Itis arguably the most scenic rafting river in Costa Rica and one of theworld's classic white
water experiences. The river plunges down theCaribbean slope through a series of spectacular canyons, clothed invirgin rain forest.
The rapids are exciting and separated by calm stretcheswhich enable you to stare at the near vertical green walls toweringhundreds
of meters above the river .........a magnificent and uniqueriver trip.
In 1986, the Pacuaare was declared a wild and scenic
river and had protectedstatus conferred upon it by the government -- the first river to beprotected in Central America. Despite this, the
National Electric Companybegan an exploratory feasibility study for a hydroelectric dam scheduledfor approximately the end of the
century. It is not clear whether thedam would be successful in generating electricity, but it would certainlyruin the Pacuare River
Valley by flooding it, thus destroying the mostbeautiful tropical river valley in Costa Rica, and one of the most beautifuland
unique in the world.
FROM THE RIO COLORADO TO THE LA SELVA BIOLOGICAL STATION.
OVERNIGHT GAVILAN LODGE. ( BIKE )
This biological station is the real thing --- teaming with researchscientist and graduate students using the well equipped laboratories,
experimental plots, herbarium and library to investigate the ecologicalprocesses of the rain forest.
La Selva is run by the
Organization for tropical Studies which is aconsortium founded in 1963 wit the purpose of providing leadership ineducation, research
and the wise use of tropical natural resources.
The area protected by La Selva is about 1500 hectares of predominantly wet
tropical rain forest. About 90% of the land has not been disturbed.It is bordered to the south by 44,000 hectares of Brauilio Carrillo
National Park thus affording a large enough area to enable a great diversityof species to live here. Over 4000 Species of birds have
been recordedat La Selva, as well as over 100 species of mammals and thousands ofplants and insects.
This area is wet ---
during the driest months it still gets 200mm ofrain. Bring rainwear... an umbrella is your best bet. Forget about thewaist down.
Insect repellent, a water bottle and clothes which you don'tmind being covered in mud and footwear suitable for muddy trails areessential.
WARNING: The well developed trail system tends to lull some visitorsinto a sense of false security. This is a wilderness
area and you mustwatch your step. There are plenty of poisonous snakes. Also watch whereyou put your hands and where you sit.
Many of the plants have very sharpthorns or stingers. Worse still, the large black ant, Paraponera clavata,can reach up to three cm
in length and can deliver a vicious bite.
ARENAL VOLCANO. OVERNIGHT AT BURRIO INN. ( BIKE )
This is an active volcano, its last eruption being in
1968. Huge explosionstriggered lava flows that killed several dozen people living in thearea. Despite this massive eruption, the
volcano retained its almostperfect conical shape and with its continuing activity, Arenal is everyone'simagination of a typical volcano.
Occasionally, the activity quieteddown for a few weeks, but generally Arenal has been producing huge ashcolumns, massive explosions,
and glowing red lava flows almost dailysince 1968. The best time for viewing this explosive sight is in theevening.
RINCON DE LA VIEJA. OVERNIGHT AT THE RINCON DE LA VIEJA LODGE. ( BIKE)
This 14,083 hectare national park is named after the active Rincon dela Vieja Volcano (1895 meters) which is the main attraction.
There areseveral other peaks in the same volcano massif, of which Santa MariaVolcano is the highest.
Major volcanic activity occurred many times in the late 1960's, butcurrently the volcano is gently active and does not present any
danger.There are fumarlos and boiling mud pools, steam vents and sulpuroussprings to explore.
Thirty two rivers and
streams have their sources with the park and thusit is an important water catchment area. It was to protect this thatthe park was created
in 1974. Forest protect the rivers from evaporationin the dry season and from flooding in the wet season.
The elevation in the
park ranges from less than 600 meters to 1916 metersand the change in the altitude result in the presence of four life zones.Visitors pass
through a variety of different habitats as they ascendthe volcanoes. Many species of trees are found in the forest. Plantsinclude the
country's highest density of Costa Rica's national flower,the Cattleya skinncri orchid.
The wildlife of the park is prolific.
Almost 300 species of birds havebeen recorded here, including curassows, quetzals, bellbirds, parrots,toucan, hummingbirds, owls,
woodpeckers, tanagers, motmots, dovcs andeagles -- to name just a few.
Mammals are abundant: deer, armadillos,
peccaries, skunks, squirels,coatimundis and three species of monkeys are frequently seen. Tracksof Baird's tapir are often found
around the lagoons near the summitand you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of this large but elusivemammal as it crashes
away like a tank through the undergrowth.
Several of the wild cat species have been recorded here, including jaguar,
puma, ocelot and margay, but you'll need a large amount of patienceand good fortune to observe one of these.
HORSEBACK RIDE TO THE CRATER AND HIKE TO THE MUD BOILS FOR A MUD BATH
(ONE OF THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THE TRIP) OVERNIGHT AT THE RINCON DE LA VIEJALODGE.
RETURN TO SAN JOSE. OVERNIGHT
RETURN TO THE U.S.
SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO SLIGHT CHANGE
DEPARTURE / RETURN:
February 13 - 22 , February 27 - March 8 , March 6 - 15 , March 20 -29
GROUP SIZE: limited to 16.
PHYSICAL ASPECTS: Moderate
PRICE: Land ---- $ 1,895.00 Air ---- Approximately $ 800.00 or less
The land cost includes: All accommodations, breakfast and lunches onthe raft and bike tours, two bilingual guides,
bike rentals and extrabike expenses, all rafting equipment, horses for the trip down the volcanoand all transportation deluxe 22 seat Toyota coaster.
This price does not include: AIRFARE, Airport tax ($6.00), a few dinners,tips for guide (approx. $20 - $40), alcoholic beverages, laundry or any other items of a personal nature.
"THE GREAT IRISH PUB RIDE"
Price........... Land Cost ........ $ 2,025.00
This year's ride will offer us an opportunity to visit
one of the most beautiful areas of Ireland. We will begin our tour in the lively town of Killarney. For the next five days we will bike west
around the Ring of Kerry and gradually work our way up to the Dingle Peninsula. After three days in Dingle we will head back to
Sbannon and return to the U.S. or other planned destinations.
THIS PRICE INCLUDES:
Bed & Breakfast, van and
sag support, transfer to and from airport, maps, "The Great Irish Pub" t-shirt, services of guides, archaeological and boat
tours and a final dinner at the Bunratty Castle.
THIS PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE:
Lunch, dinners or bike rentals. We will
be contracting with a local bike company for our rentals. They charge approximately 25 pounds a week (about $42.00). If you decide
to rent, you will pay the bike company directly.
Depart the U.S. for Shannon Airport. Arrive Shannon,
transfer to Killarney. A two hour drive will take us to the lively town of Killarney, population 8,000. Killarney is located in the
southwestern corner of Ireland, with its three famous lakes reflecting the ever-changing skies above the great mountain ranges.
Killarney has been the inspiration of poets and painters for many centuries and now it is also a thriving commercial and tourist center.
Considered by many to be too touristy, however it will allow us time to get our rental bikes and recover from our jet lag. The food and
singing pubs are at their best here. The following day we'll take an optional ride in and around the village and check out some of
Killarneys' historical sights: St. Mary's Cathedral, Franciscan Friary, Deenack Lodge (thatched cottage), ross Caastle, Muckross Abbey,
Killegy Church, etc.
Killarney to Sneem. Today we'll start our bike tour around the Ring of Kerry. From Killarney we will take the famous
boats from Lakes of Killarney to the Gap of Dunloe. The views of the lakes and the Killarney National Park are spectacular from the Lake
and the Gap. Our final destination for the day will take us to the village of Sneem. We'll spend the night at the Bank House with Margaret
and Noel and if we're lucky, see Maureen O'Hara on a summer vacation. They have a pitch and putt golf course, panda bear statues, a
great place to buy hand knit Irish sweaters. This is a challenging ride for the first day with lots of those "rolling" hills.
Distance traveled: approx. 35 miles.
Sneem to Waterville. From Sneem to Watreville we will follow the beautiful coast south through the quaint villages of
Castlcave ( a small resort with fine sandy beaches and the imposing reins of Staigue Fort, one of Ireland's finest archaeological remains),
Catherdaniel (home of Caniel O'Connell "the Liberator" who lived and worked there during his political life), and Westcove.
The afternoon ride into Waterville is unforgettable, cliffs overlooking sandy beaches and the mighty Atlantic. The village itself is nestled
between Lough Currane and the Atlantic. Again there are some of those "rolling" hills, but the views are well worth the effort.
Distance traveled: 25 miles.
Waterville to Portmagee. This day we leave Waterville for Portmagee. The major town along this road is the Irish
speaking village of Ballinskelligs. Irish children come here in the summer to an Irish College to learn to speak Gaelic (the traditional
Irish language). A side trip down to the southwest to Bolus Head is definitely in order... we'll explore the remains of Kilreleis Monastic
settlement and a great old cemetery where you might find some of your old relatives. The afternoon will take us up a very steep hill to
Coomanaspig Pass (1,000 ft.) on our way to Portmagee. Those who don't want to go up the hill can take it the easy way, but they will
miss the incredible view at the top of Finnans Bay. From the top of the pass we'll see the mountains and harbors from Dingle to the
Beara Peninsula. Whatever goes up must come down... the rid into Portmagee is thrilling and worth the climb up. We will spend one
night here at the Ferry Boat House with Kathleen and her Spanish husband. Distance traveled: 17 hard miles.
Portmagee to Dingle. Today, we head north to the village of Dingle and the Dingle Peninsula.
This Peninsula has been described as having "more interesting antiquated, historic sites and varied mountain scenery the any
other part of Ireland. With its Irish speaking district and rich cultural heritage, it is an area of more than ordinary interest."
The road will take us along the coast passing through the village of Caselemaine (Castle of the River Maine). It is here that the famous
Australian outlaw, "The Wild Colonial Boy" was born. (Tom can teach you the words to this song!) Standing just beyond the
head of Cemain Harbour, the village is pleasantly situated against the background of the Slieve Mish mountains to the northwest.
The afternoon will take us past Inch beach, which is probably the most beautiful beach in Ireland. It is a picture of blue waters with
tinted mountains on either side and is backed by sandhills of archaeological interest. Dingle is the most westerly town in Europe,
lying partly at the foot of a steep slope on the north side of Dingle Harbour, and it is bounded on three sides by hills, which towards
the north, culminate in Mount Brandon. Though this town is used to tourists and seems progressive, it still retains much of its old world
atmosphere. Some of its 53 pubs are the same as they were 100 years ago, and were are almost guaranteed to have some of the best
traditional Irish music in Ireland.
Our Bed & Breakfast in Dingle is run by Tim and Eileen Collins. These are two real Irish characters.
Tim is the retired police chief and the police station is located behind the house. He is an expert in the history and archeology of this
peninsula and promises to be a great source of information. He and one of his sons will take us out for a tour.
There are many
wonderful places to ride bikes from here. One particular ride can take us to Sleigh head which is in the westerly part of the island
where we'll discover beautiful beaches, ancient ruins and small quaint Irish speaking hamlets. Both "Far and Away"
and "Ryans Daughter" were filmed on this peninsula. Another great ride takes us over Conner Pass to the north part of
the peninsula. Conner Pass is the highest mountain pass in Ireland and from the top we'll see Brandon and Tralee bays to the north
with the sandy Castlegregory peninsula separating them; to the south Dingle Bay; in the deep valley below are a number of
lakes. Theroad winds downwards to the base of great cliffs and the valley underneath is a boulder strewn wilderness.
Another main attraction in Dingle is its famous porpoise, Fungi. This guy got lost about eight years ago and ended
up in Dingle Harbour and never left. He is now the main attraction. Grab a wet suit and swim with him!
We will say goodbye to Dingle and head north back to Shannon Airport. We'll spend our last night nearby at a local
Bed & Breakfast for our early morning departure. Our last evening will be spent at the Bunratty Castle enjoying a great
Medieval feast with the maidens, friars, kings, peasants.... everything you can imagine from the days gone by. Though those
can be a little touristy, it is a great way to end our trip and all say good-bye.
DAY 11 - Flight back to the states.