Bike Hike Adventures in Ecuador
Bike Hike Adventures offers a unique and exciting way to explore Ecuador and become acquainted with the local people, as well as their customs, culture and traditions. Founded in 1994 by Trish Sare, Bike Hike Adventures aims to bring together like-minded people who love the outdoors and, as the name suggests, have a passion for adventure.
Specializing in small group customized multi-sport adventures, the tour leaders do their utmost to ensure that participants get the most enjoyment out of their trip. Each unique itinerary is a combination of a range of activities such as hiking, mountain biking, whitewater rafting, horseback riding and rock climbing. Highlights of any tour include authentic encounters with the local people on the route, with the opportunity to gain insight into their day to day lives.
A popular choice for exploring Ecuador is a ten day adventure which includes biking, hiking, rafting, horseback riding and inner-tubing. The adventure begins at the beautiful San Pablo Lake, where participants set off on fat tire mountain bikes along a paved road around the lakeshore and through indigenous villages before riding along an abandoned railroad line leading to the town of Otavalo. After lunch and a couple of hours shopping in Otavalo’s renowned handicraft market, adventurers are be shuttled to their overnight accommodation in an 18th century hacienda.
The following day includes a three hour hike around the crater lake of Cuicocha before enjoying a picnic lunch. Lunch is followed by biking downhill through small indigenous villages, eventually arriving at the town of Cotacachi, where a visit to the leather handicraft shops reveals the immense talent of the local crafters. The night is spent at Ecuador’s oldest hacienda, where adventurers enjoy a hearty meal and good company in front of the fireplace. Day four starts off with a drive south-east to Papallacta at an altitude of 4,300 meters where a three hour hiking trail winds through a pristine nature reserve. Hikers can look out for deer, condors and possibly even a spectacled bear or two. Overnight is spent at the Papallacta Hotsprings where weary bodies can be rejuvenated in the therapeutic hot thermal pools.
Day five takes the group from the high Andes down to the misty cloud forest, following the scenic river gorges of Quijos and Cosanga. After lunch, adventurers are driven to a jungle lodge located on the Amazon River, where a good night’s rest prepares the group for the following day’s activities. Day six includes a hike through primary and secondary rain forest and a visit to an Animal Rehabilitation Center that is home to a variety of animals recuperating from injuries. Visitors can expect to see, and learn about, tapirs, caimans, monkeys, toucans and more. The afternoon is spent floating down the tranquil Arajuno River on inner-tubes.
The highlight of day seven is a whitewater adventure on the Jatunyacu “big water” River, which takes adventurers through an exciting combination of rushing rapids, calm pools and lush jungle. Day eight is spent hiking and biking to some of the beautiful waterfalls, valleys, and mountains of the area, before spending the night in Banos. The last day of the adventure is spent on horseback in the exquisite Cotopaxi National Park which is rich in flora and fauna and is a prime bird-watching destination.
Many who have been on a Bike Hike Adventure in Ecuador agree that it is a most rewarding, and even life-changing experience.