“The “Protect Aoos” MTB Ultra is indeed the most demanding MTB race in the country,”
say the people who have run it. And this is because it requires not only physical endurance and proper power management for more than 118 kilometers, or the bike to cope without any mechanical problems. The greatest feature and the grandeur of the struggle are the soul and the will to impose on both the mind and the body, with the mere purpose of ending next to the Aoos River.
The event now offers 3 distances. The Ultra distance will cover 118 km and over 3550 m of elevation.Participants must climb to an altitude of 1.600 m two times and one time in 1.700m throughout the race. For the less experienced riders, who feel a bit overwhelmed by the Ultra’s statistics there is the shortened Marathon distance that will cover 73 km and 2150 m of climbing. Racers choosing the Marathon distance will not miss out but this distance is designed to encourage more people to taste “the Protect Aoos ride” without pushing their limits too far. At the same time, along with the Ultra & Marathon races, the “small / fun” 30 km Race is conducted, which constitutes an interesting opportunity for all participants to get to know the nature and the bike, whether they are hobbyists or not.
In the heart of North Pindos National Park
The area where the “Protect Aoos MTB Ultra” takes place is located in the heart of the North Pindos National Park, the largest protected land area in Greece. The creation of the North Pindos National Park with the unification of these areas has got the main purpose of preserving, protecting and promoting the natural and cultural heritage of the area. The special ecological value of the North Pindos National Park, which is recognized at national, European and global level, is derived from the fact that it includes: two national parks, Pindos National Park (Valia Calda) and the National Park of Vikos-Aoos, eleven sites belonging to the Pan-European Network of Protected Areas: NATURA 2000, a terittory designated as a Biogenetic Reserve at the core of Valia Calda, eleven Wildlife Shelters, and an important part of the Geopark Vikos – Aoos, which is a member of UNESCO’s European and World Geoparks Network.