Who are we?
We are a small company owned and operated by Carolyn and Pieter Maessen. BikePlusTours was born out of a desire to share our love for cycling on the great mountain roads of Europe with our guests. We have been organizing group cycling trips since 2002 and we feel very lucky that our hobby has become our profession. Pieter has been a cyclist all his life. He has competed in junior and elite races in his native Netherlands as well as in Belgium, Germany and the USA. Although more of a classics rider than a climber, Pieter has had a passion for cycling in the mountains ever since riding up Passo dello Stelvio at age 16. Carolyn has had a lot of success as a triathlete. She was a sponsored athlete for seven years and has won races in every distance from sprint to Ironman. She has competed in World Championships in Ironman in Kona (Hawaii), Ironman 70.3 in Las Vegas (Nevada) and Sprint Triathlon in London (UK).
BikePlusTours LLC is based in Breckenridge, Colorado.
What level of fitness and skills is required?
Our trips cater for the serious cyclist who is used to day-long rides and enjoys challenging terrain including strenuous climbs and steep descents. You do not need previous experience of riding in the mountains, but you must be comfortable with your skills as we will often be riding on narrow mountain roads which sometimes have a rough surface and steep drops on the side without guard rails.
What kind of bike will I need and do you have rental bikes available?
You will need a well-maintained road bike with good brakes and tires and low gears for the mountains. We highly recommend that you have your bicycle serviced by a professional mechanic before the trip.
It is important that you fit well on your bike and are accustomed to its handling. For that reason we require that you bring your own bicycle along and we do not have rental bikes available.
What does a typical group look like?
Our groups usually include men and women between 25 and 70 years old. There is usually a mix of couples and singles. Speed and skill levels vary but all share a passion for long bike rides in scenic surroundings.
Does everybody ride together in a group?
Although all riders often leave at around the same time in the mornings, smaller groups are often formed of riders with similar fitness and skill levels. Some riders prefer to ride alone and there is no obligation at all to ride with others.
What kind of support is provided during the rides?
There will be two ride leaders on bicycles and one or two support vehicles. The support vehicles will wait for all riders at strategic points (bottom and top of major climbs, difficult turns etc.) and will carry water as well as some small snacks and fruit. The van contains all baggage and is not equipped for bike or people transport. However, in case of emergency, up to two bicycles and riders can be given a lift.
What happens in case of bad weather?
We ride rain or shine. It is possible to skip a riding day if we are not changing hotels on the day. On some stages we are able to provide a shorter ride option in case of adverse weather conditions.