Trail Riding Pyrenees Adventure
Mini Mondo - £1289
A Five-day, guided off-road challenge around the Pyrenees, accessible on big adventure bikes (but only if fitted with full knobbly tyres and ridden by VERY competent trail-riders).
Mini Mondo is run by Big Scale Adventures Limited • Registered in England and Wales • Registered number 11234298 • Registered office 27 Mortimer Street, London W1T 3BL
⚠️ WARNING ⚠️
You will be guided in two squads by myself and the legendary Dai Jones. Seriously, no-one in the english-speaking world knows their way around these mountains like we do and we are devoted to giving you a fabulous experience.
The off-road routes are designed to be accessible to GS 1200s, KTM 110s etc but not if they are ridden by a normal person, they are quite technical. They simply cannot be tackled by off-road novices. If you need a bit of adventure on your adventure bike, and can handle it like a God, but can only get a week off work, then THIS is it. If you have NEVER been trail-riding you should probably not be doing Mini Mondo. Naturally, if you want to bring a smaller bike, be our guest, you will have a better week than the person riding a 250kg machine. We rarely exceed 30mph and the speed limit on the trails is 12mph. More info below under ‘Choice of Bike’. There is no mechanical recovery, first-aid, emergency or back-up service provided. Also, this is dangerous.
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
I am big on the teamwork low-budget DIY kick. That’s what I am going to immerse you in. If this sounds awful, it probably will be. If you are a show-off, a prima donna, vaguely selfish and really into doing things ‘your’ way then do NOT come on this trip. If you are the kind of person who thinks insulting people is funny (and then follows up the insult with “I was only joking”) can you please not come on this trip. The compressed nature of the living means we need team-players who want to get stuck in. Not the riding, the admin: washing up, gathering wood, puncture repairs, setting up camp, etc etc. You’ll be working non-stop and I need you to relish that.
I created the route that you will ride. If you sign up to a Mini-Mondo you are agreeing to NOT make any attempt using maps, phones, GPS or electronic Satnav units to record the route in any way whatsoever. If, whilst on the trip, it comes to light that you have been recording a ‘breadcrumb trail’ then you will be asked to leave the trip. If you have a tracker on your bike then remove or de-activate it whilst on MM.
Safety – Is our primary concern.
I want you to finish the week, in this order, feeling:
Trail-riding and motorcycling are NOT safe. You do not have to face these risks. Be safe by NOT motorcycling. Be safe by NOT trail-riding in remote wilderness locations. If you lose control on a cliff-edge mountain trail, and go over the edge, you will be killed. Ensure you have life insurance that covers you for this. I have no ‘tour operator’ insurance nor group insurance. I am a private individual taking like-minded buddies into a risky situation. Your safety is NOT guaranteed but, given that we ARE trail-riding we will always mitigate all risks. If you are killed it will almost certainly be in an RTA with a car etc. It will not be my fault. It will be because you are riding unmaintained trails in the mountains, far from help. If you want a guarantee of safety you must NOT come on this trip.
Five days guided trail-riding in the Catalan Pyrenees. 100% teamwork, self-catering, rough camping, only tarps, no tents, no GPS, no back-up vehicle, no sat phones. You MUST be a competent trail-rider to be able to access the route we have designed. If you even vaguely nervous on a trail bike then this is not for you.
It will be intense and tiring with little privacy or molly-coddling. However, it will be an unforgettably positive experience with the risk of death and serious injury. There is no mechanical recovery, first-aid, emergency or back-up service provided.
Monday afternoon 2pm – team assembles in Oliana, northern Catalunya, Spain, Exact location – HERE..
Meet and greet, distribute team kit, ride 30 miles, eat and sleep in the field Monday night.
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, trail-ride about 500 miles around the Pyrenees, rough camping and self-catering every night.
Friday, trail ride to hotel, arriving late afternoon, exhausted. Return group eqpt then shower, cocktails, dinner and crisp cotton sheets! No need to go ‘native’! Expect to have to share a room whilst in the hotel. End hotel and start hotel are THE SAME PLACE. Saturday morning, ride off into the sunset (as far as that is possible before lunch).
1) £1189 if you pay your £200 deposit before 30th Nov 2022
2) £1289 if you pay your £200 deposit after 30th Nov 2022
Everyone is asking me about what bike to take etc. The answer is simple; It’s not about the bike, it’s about YOUR level of skill.
We will be riding hundreds of miles of farmers’ trails in the mountains carrying ‘expedition’ luggage. It is neither enduro nor trials but will challenge different riders in different ways. If you have zero off-road skill you need to stop reading this and start trail-riding. If you are a dirt-legend then you will be fine on a huge Adventure Bike. If you are a normal person with no off-road experience who wants something to do on their ‘adventure bike’ you need to build up your skill before attending MM. It is your call not mine. Personally, I hope to be on a Honda CRF250L which I will also ride to and from Spain. Put simply, your choice of bike mustn’t impinge on the rest of the team members’ enjoyment. Whatever you bring, just make sure you can handle it easily on rough trails, hill-climbs and loose rubbly descents (and pick it up on your own). A GSA1200 or KTM990 can handle this project but usually, the rider simply doesn’t enjoy it. The weak link is the rider, not the machine…
Austin rides a Honda CRF250L – it rocks
This is the dry bag Austin uses:
This is the protection Austin uses:
To register interest (you CANNOT sign up online) send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Expect a telephone chat with Austin to ensure this is the right holiday for you.
MM24 4 to 9 Sep 2023
‘Motel Mondo’ £599 not incl hotels (same route as Mini Mondo but every night in a hotel – zero camping, cooking and washing-up, riding ONLY)
The 2023 ‘Motel Mondo 5’ is 25-30 Sep 2023
There may be another week long trip if demanded.
There isn’t much. If it goes wrong for you, the rest of the team will get you to tarmac and then to a town. These are the guys that will literally get you ‘off the mountain’. Once we get you to a town, we may leave you, unless you have life-threatening injuries. If you are injured badly you need to summon your next of kin to be your companion. They need to be ready for this.
You will need some euro-wide breakdown cover in place because I will NOT provide any. Once you are back on tarmac you have to take care of yourself, like an adventure motorcyclist would. This may mean hitch-hiking, flagging down a passing car or walking. Seriously, this trip does NOT have a built in rescue and recovery element.
If you want a trip with full rescue vehicles, really easy dirt roads, first-aid staff, vehicle recovery etc, this isn’t it. Don’t sign up. Also, you could be killed or badly injured. There is zero health cover. Your injuries may be treated in a Spanish hospital ONLY if you carry the EHIC https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/europe-travel-insurance/ehic/card ON YOUR PERSON, but even this is NOT guaranteed, they often charge people who are holding a valid EHIC card in front of them!! Non-EU nationals, expect a heavy bill from a Spanish hospital and have appropriately heavy-duty holiday insurance that covers dirt-biking in wilderness areas.
Get recovery insurance and medivac from www.globalrescue.com
Don’t pay anything until you have read my ‘statement of expectations’ and the ‘Trail-riding and safety policy’ Email me and I will send it to you. This document is NOT on this website. This is the ethos for the week. It’s really prescriptive and some people find it weird and implausible. However, it’s how I roll so there’s no point in signing up and then leaving the trip at the end of the first day spluttering “You never said it would be like THIS!”
To guarantee a place simply pay in full once you have spoken to me on the phone. Do NOT pay without agreeing to the terms. If that’s too steep then the minimum payment is £200. That gets you a reserved place. Pay, by making a BACS transfer to the bank of Mini Mondo – 30-91-91 36472060 with a ref of your surname. There is no mechanical recovery, first-aid, emergency or back-up service provided within the team. We are on our own…
This refunds policy is extremely strict. You are gambling with substantial sums if for whatever reason, however understandable, you have to cancel. You MUST have holiday insurance that will refund the money you pay to me if you cannot attend. I will not refund your fees (full details below). The Mini-Mondo project only works because there are loads of us carrying all the group eqpt spread between us. I plan the team as 8 bikes and we have 8 sets of group kit to distribute on the first day. If even one person doesn’t show up we are compromised.
In summary, the £200 deposit is NOT refundable under any circumstances. It is how I simply find out who is and is NOT serious about attending. The balance of £789 has to be paid by midnight on the last day in April 2022. If you don’t want to gamble with your entry fee, get insurance, or step away from this project.
If you cancel before midnight on 30 April 23 and have only paid the £200 deposit then you will get no refund.
If you cancel before midnight on 30 April 23 and have paid the full £1289 then you will get a £300 refund.
If you cancel AFTER midnight on 30 April 23 then you will get no refund.
Take out holiday insurance that covers a refund scenario AND medical treatment. Do NOT rely on your EHIC card!
Motorcycle self catering – the ultimate legal high
Motorcycle teamwork – the ultimate legal high
Motorcycle rough camping – the ultimate legal high