Escape for a week of training with Thomson Bike Tours and CCNS in one of the world’s fastest developing cycling nations.
Thomson Bike Tours and CCNS, one of the premiere coaching companies in the North-East US, have partnered up to bring you a fantastic week of winter training in Colombia.
Combining warm weather and high altitude, Medellin is the perfect destination to escape and enjoy a week of top-class winter training. Our hotel for the week is the luxury Hotel Movich, situated at an altitude of 2200m and very close to Medellin’s International airport.
CCNS coaches will be accompanying your regular Thomson Bike Tours ride leaders on the rides and look forward to meeting you, learning about your unique goals, and helping you achieve them. In the evenings you’ll enjoy clinics from CCNS coaches on one of many pertinent cycling topics.
During the course of the week you’ll be riding at elevations of between 2000m and 3000m and you’ll be following in the tire tracks of the many top professionals that live and train in Medellin. Fernando Gaviria (4-time stage winner at the 2017 Giro d’Italia), Rigoberto Uran (2nd overall in the 2017 Tour de France) and Team Sky’s top climbers, Sebastian & Sergio Henao, all hail from Medellin and prepare for the Grand Tours on the very same routes that we’ll be riding all week. Our staff will be joined by Mauricio Ardila, a retired professional rider who rode for Davitamon-Lotto Tour and Rabobank, and won the 2004 Tour of Britain. Mauricio will also be joining you on the rides and expect many of the local pros to show up at some point during the week.
It’s also worth watching this video from Rigoberto Uran. Rigo’s private Colombia gives you the chance to discover more about the beauty of Colombia and the passion Colombians have for cycling.
Bienvenido a Medellin!
Our trip starts at the luxury 4-star Hotel Movich situated just 5 minutes from the José Maria Cordoba International Airport. Meet our staff at the Hotel Movich at 10am for a brief Orientation Meeting followed by the bike build and lunch by the hotel pool.
After lunch we’ll head out on our first ride in Colombia. From the hotel we head south to La Ceja, home town of Fernando Gaviria - winner of 4 stages of the 2017 Giro d’Italia. In La Ceja we start the 2.5km climb to Los Enanos. Enjoy the beautiful descent from Los Enanos to Don Diego, then the final 15km of rolling terrain through El Tablazo back to our hotel.
Meeting Time and Place
Our hotel is situated just 5 minutes from Medellin Airport and a free shuttle is available. Fly in any time and take the shuttle to the hotel. Our staff will meet you in the Hotel Movich Reception at 10:00am.
Santa Elena & Parque Arvi
A beautiful ride today through the Arvi Natural Park. A few km after leaving the hotel we already find ourselves on the man climb of the day, the 8km climb to Santa Elena - and a huge favorite with the local pros.
From Santa Elena we continue the ride northwards into the magnificent Arvi Natural Park and eventually on to the Alto Medina. The long descent from Medina takes us to Guarne and a final 15km flat section back to the hotel.
A challenging stage today and definitely a day where you’ll need your climbing legs. Our ride has no less than 6 categorised climbs and a total elevation gain of almost 2900m. Our destination is the beautiful colonial town of Abejorral which was declared a national monument in Colombia.
The ride itself is a roller-coaster of ups and downs through rural Antioquia. Enjoy the riding along traffic-free, quiet roads that wind their way through the green fields and valleys of this beautiful part of the Andes mountains.
After our huge ride yesterday, a shorter ride today and with less elevation gain.
From the hotel we head north to La Ramada then turn south towards Marinilla and eventually on to El Carmen de Viboral. Although just a small village, El Carmen is the capital of handcrafted ceramics in the region and we’ll have a short coffee shop and look around to see the local craftsmen at work.
From El Carmen we head back to Fernando Gaviria’s home town of La Ceja and the climb to the Alto Pantanillo.
Alto de la Union
Our main challenge today is the climb to the Alto de la Union. The Union is also the favorite training climb of local rider, Rigoberto Uran, who finished 2nd overall in the 2017 Tour de France. Rigoberto also happens to be best friends with Mauricio - and if Rigoberto is available, maybe he’ll join us as he frequently uses this climb for hill repeats.
From the summit of the Alto de la Union, we’ll continue on to La Union where we can have a coffee stop before heading back to the hotel.
Another epic day today with lots of climbing. Enjoy the first 15km of the ride, the only flat section of the entire route today. After 15km we reach Guarne and the start of the Alto Medina climb.
From the top of the Medina we enter into the Parque Arvi Natural Park and from there until the end of the ride we’ll enjoy a long series of short, steep climbs and descents.
Today’s destination is the town of Guatapé which claims to be the most colourful town in Colombia. Along the way we’ll stop at the famous Peñón de Guatapé for some extra training. The Peñón is a massive rock that sticks out of the surrounding landscape - and we’ll climb the 740 steps to the top (yes - that’s correct - 740 steps!) to enjoy the magnificent views of the huge reservoir and hundreds of islands below.
Only 1 categorised climb today, the Alto del Chocho, but lot’s of undulating terrain makes for a very challenging ride.
Unfortunately, our Colombian training experience has come to an end. The Hotel Movich is just 5 minutes from Medellin Airport and provides free shuttles throughout the day.