Castle Tour: three day easy mountainbike trip for beginners

 

After meeting up with participants and guides, we head east, towards Larochette, a very nice and touristic little village at the border of the Müllerthal, home to an… ancient castle. The second day brings us to the capital city Luxembourg where we will have ample time after the ride to admire remaining parts of the old fortress or the founding castle of Luxembourg, on the Bock rock. For the final day, we start form the western border of the city of Luxembourg and ride as much as possible on the playful singletrails of the valley of the Mamer river, trying to get sights on 2-3 more castles.

 

This tour is among the easy ones in the program and shall be seen as an introduction into multi-day mountain biking through Luxembourg. Yet, it is not convenient for complete novices, but rather as a “first experience” for beginners that feel comfortable on their bike. Physical level is 1/4 with 30-35 km and some 500-700 m of climbing per day. For more details, please refer to the “For Whom” section.

 

 

Detailed description

 

 

1. day: Mersch to Larochette

 

On the first day, we leave Mersch train station and head towards the «Noumer Léen» area. These are rock formations around the village of Nommern, with super hiking trails and tremendous rock formations, exactly as in the Müllerthal (it s the same geological area). Once we’ve passed the Noumerléen («Léen» means caves in Luxembourgish) we pass our first romantic castle, namely at Meysembourg. It is currently being renovated and rumours have it that it is being transformed into a luxury hotel… Before getting down to Larochette, we’ll shred a last, pretty spectacular, balcony-like singletrail that enables us to visit the well preserved ruins of Larochette castle, before joining the stays of the night (Youth Hostel or Hotel).

 

35 Km, 750 m of uphill.

 

 

 

2. day: Larochette to Luxembourg-city

 

The second day features the most climbing. One of the reasons for this is that the massive forest that we will cross, the so-called «Grünewald» lies atop a kind of plateau, featuring the highest point of the southern part of the country, the «Gutland» (430 m). But first we have to leave Larochette which we will do following the «white Ernz» river. We will actually later come across its very source, a tiny trickle of water that runs amidst of the aforementioned Grünewald. White Ernz and black Ernz are affluents of the Sûre (Sauer) and most important rivers of the wider Müllerthal area, together with the Sûre.

 

Once more, we will have the possibility to put our noses inside ancient walls, this time very nicely renovated and full with life: château Bourglinster, which is part of the belongings of the State, home to a two-starred restaurant and featuring conference facilities. After a break on the terrace of the castle, we enter into the Grünewald, the biggest contiguous forest of Luxembourg (about 2500 ha), of which a big part still belongs to the grand-ducal family. Formerly their private hunting ground, enclosed by a high fence («Gatter»), it is now open to the public and surprises by the peace and calm it diffuses. Optionally we might visit the roman aqueduc called «Raschpetzer» which lie on the western border of the Grengewald. Overnight in the Youth Hostel or in a modern *** Hotel.

 

Total distance: 35 km Total climb: 650 m

 

 

 

3. day: Luxembourg-city to Mersch

 

We leave Luxembourg-city along the main road going west, the “Nationale 12”, but use, wherever possible, nice small singletrails (possibly up to 30% of the tracks during the first day). We climb towards Bridel and pull down to Kopstal, diving into the "Mamerdall". The latter gives name to one of the most extensive protected areas of Luxembourg (2400 ha). One of the marking elements of the reserve are regularly flooded so-called riparian forests («Auenwälder») in the vicinity of the Mamer river. Other striking features are the high biodiversity and the elevated average age of the tree population (120-140 years).

 

We can choose whether joining our stay for the night rather quickly or enjoying a bigger share of sometimes more difficult singletrails and two more châteaux (or their remnants: Schoenfels and Ansembourg) before we reach Hollenfels. Its castle with the mighty donjon dates back into the early Middle Ages, being first mentioned around 1050, just 100 years after Luxembourg-city was founded by Count Siegfried. It lies at the edge of a small village overlooking the Eisch valley and is home to one of the 10 youth hostels of the country, good-value-for-money accommodations that are open to guests of all ages. Our tour ends there, we’ll have a drink at the foot of the château and bring you by car to Mersch unless some or all of the participants want to take a last easy ride (30 min.).

 

Total distance: 35 km Total climb: 750 m

 

 

Guiding by Jerry, Christian and Ferdy.

 

 

 

 

Organizational aspects

 

This trip is planned for June 20-22, 2020. It starts and ends in Mersch at the railway station ("Gare de Mersch") where there is a large car parking.

 

Participants meet there at the first day at 11h00. Return time the last day is 14h00. After final registration, participants will receive a detailed road map with adresses and phone numbers.

 

 

Prices are as follows:

 - EUR 160 for the stay in the Youthhostels (2-4 bed rooms);

 - EUR 225 for the stay in the Hotels (double rooms);

 - EUR 325 for the stay in the Hotels (single rooms).

 

The price includes the guiding, luggage transport and the overnight stays with breakfast.

Please register through this link (participation code "CT 2020"). Please respect the deadlines: 29.5 for Youth Hostels and 12.6 for Hotels. For enquiries, contact us through email: singletrails.lu (at) gmail.com.

 

Please register through this link (participation code "CT 2020"). Please respect the deadlines. For enquiries, contact us through email: singletrails.lu (at) gmail.com.