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The Rockies in North America and the Andes in South America may be two distinct mountains ranges, but together they are part of the American Cordillera—a vast network of peaks forming the backbone of the Americas, from Alaska to Chile. In February, a team of riders from, fittingly, Rocky Mountain Bikes, flew from the heart of one range to explore the other by bike. Following rumors of singletrack and a burgeoning mountain bike scene, they ventured from their homes in British Columbia, Canada, to the mountains around Bariloche, a popular ski destination in Argentina.
“We wanted to do an all-mountain riding trip that was about finding a new adventure in new riding area,” said Peter Vallance, Rocky Mountain’s brand manager. “We wanted really high-quality big rides every day—huge climbs, huge descents, beers, high fives, sunshine...all the good stuff. We wanted the ultimate mountain bike vacation and we got it.”
The riders consisted of Wade Simmons, Thomas Vanderham, Geoff Gulevich, and Andreas Hestler. Photographer Margus Riga and filmmaker Ambrose Weingart also followed along as the team rode between high-mountain refugios and sampled some of the region’s bike park trails. Over a week of riding, the team would come to understand that even though the Rockies and Andes are half a world apart, the riders in each location are united by a passion for riding.
To showcase this once-in-a-lifetime adventure, Rocky Mountain produced five webisodes—the first three are posted below and the final two will be available this week.
Episode 1: Airport hassles, Buenos Aires nightlife and the first taste of singletrack
Episode 2: Riding above Catedral bike park, climbing to a refugio, bobsled descents
Episode 3: Riding through rainforests, skirting glaciers and 7,000-foot volcanoes.