Cycling enthusiasts, Maramures lovers, and not only,
This collection of maps by Schubert & Franzke is a daring attempt to integrate cycling trails in the historical region of Maramures, in the mountain area that rises above the inhabited areas but also in the neighbouring area of the mountains in a single map.
The trails were described between 2015 and 2016 by members and supporters of the Romanian Alpine Club – Cluj University Section.
This map is the third of its kind in Romania (together with the other two maps: Cycling trails in the Banat Mountains and Cycling trails around Brasov) and it includes detailed cycling/mountain biking maps as well as useful tourist information for those who visit this area on a bicycle.
The trails proposed here are divided into several categories:
– trails that run through villages and by tourist attractions one can visit on the territory of Historical Maramures;
– trails that start from inhabited areas and take mountain biking enthusiasts through the alpine area;
– and third, trails in the southern part of the Rodnei Mountains.
The trails in the first category offer the traveler routes to admire authentic households, isolated houses, grasslands that are still used by peasants, Maramures gates, old wooden churches listed as UNESCO world heritage sites, museums (The Museum of the Romanian Peasant Woman), beautiful valleys such as Iza or Viseu, monasteries that are important heritage sites for the typical architecture of Maramures (Barsana).
For the more trained bikers, the trails in the mountainous area run on the territory of the Rodnei Mountains National Park and the Maramures Mountains Natural Park. Landscape diversity and biodiversity on these grounds are enough to impress any nature and sports lover. The maximum elevation that can be reached on two wheels is nearly 2,000 m in one of the saddles on the main ridge of the Rodnei Mountains – Tarnita la Cruce (1,981 m), but all trails reach elevations and areas with breathtaking panoramic views. Besides the alpine area, the trails also offer breaks to various sights on the way: the mineral water springs, the Mocanita steam train station on Vaser Valley, the Blue Karst Spring of Iza, the pastoral sheepfolds, the impressive Cailor Waterfall, The Roots Museum and others.
The trails in the southern part of the Rodnei Mountains start from the villages on Somesul Mare Valley and those on Salautei Valley. Similarly to the trails in the other two categories, these also run on both macadam and asphalt roads but with lower traffic or ridge roads. Whether you reach elevations that enable you to stop and admire the beautiful ridges of Rodnei, Suhardului or Bargaului Mountains, visit George Cosbuc Memorial Museum or simply talk to the inhabitants of these areas, each trail offers something authentic.
The map contains 24 trails, marked on several flyers, which can be used individually on site on a map holder on the handlebar or as such in a plastic protection. The target group is quite eclectic as the product tries to satisfy both road cyclists and mountain bike lovers (cross-country, all mountain, downhill, freeride). Most trails are loop trails, only two mid-length trails are round trip.
Most trails are of medium or high difficulty, requiring both good physical training for steep and force climbing, as well as the necessary skills for downhill sections on steep technical paths. Trails were chosen to be appropriate for cycling, but where this was not possible the presence of short push-bike sections or off-bike descents has not been ruled out. Last but not least, there are also some easy and short trails of little elevation change that can be done by beginners or as training by experts.