I can't say enough good things about Adventure Rider Centre - ARC.
A friend had pestered me to give the ARC a call. I emailed Kaz (co owner) She was dead helpful throughout and happily answered every bone question I had.
I have never ridden an Enduro bike before (road only) so have no kit and no idea what I should do. The ARC provided me with everything I needed to get there and ride safely and have a flippin laugh to boot.
I went out on my own and booked 4 days riding over a 6 day period. They are totally flexible. You can come for 1 day or 10 days. They will meet your needs. Days off in between - no problem.
I went on my own and ended up riding with loads of different groups - a group of 5 swedes, two Danes, an ex pat Brit and anther drop in Brit. I never felt awkward or an embuggerance and the other clients were great fun too.
For me, ARCs unique selling point is that EVERYBODY, staff and clients, were welcoming and inclusive regardless of ability and as I found out by seeing other outfits in the area, ARC gave you training, instruction and the groups were never too big (biggest I had was 7 - smallest was 4)
So in detail
Mijas is about a 20 minute drive from Malaga airport - ARC put on a shuttle. A busy but authentic Spanish village that's far enough from the Costa to be free of tackiness but still close enough to have a beach day on any days off (30 minutes on a bus that cost about £2).
I stayed in the local 4* hotel. Brilliant place and everyone speaks English for us lazy Brits. Great food, wonderful pool and tasty hoppy beverages - oh and it's all included in the price you pay the ARC (not the beer though!). A daily shuttle (kaz) will take you from the hotel to the centre. The Village has every kind of restaurant and amenity you could need. It also has a castle and a bullring so it's not a small place.
At the time of Writing this, the ARC has the latest Husabergs 250 2 stroke up to 500 4 stroke and everything inbetween. The on site mechanic (Dave) is brilliant -your bike will be set up first thing and serviced after every day. For a know nothing like me, I picked up a lot.
You'll need your own socks, base layers and a camel back. They will provide you with everything else and generally, straight out the packet so no stinky helmets! I took a couple of sizeable tumbles and the worst I managed was a sore elbow so the kit is good.
Baz is the lead instructor / guide and Danni was my principal teacher (like I said, I went from zero). Both guys are excellent instructors and guides. They taught me everything I needed and when I wanted to push my ability, they explained what I had to do and were extremely patient when I didn't manage the route the first time. They're both Ninjas on bikes and can help anyone of any ability.
Kaz is the primary administrator but she rides too. She'll sort out everything you need for your trip.
God above! If you find the area around Mijas and Malaga dull, I'd be amazed. There is everything from flowing trails to uber-nails technical riding and every combination for every skill level. Baz and Danni know all the good haunts and everything is really close by.
Dear reader, I'm not gilding the lily here. My 5 days (I took another day during the week) with the ARC were hard because I pushed myself and everyone helped me along but they were incredible and I will be going back again soon. Brilliant memories.
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