TRAIL EXPLORING // CHILE

Travelers with EVOC bike travel bags and luggage walking out of the airport in Araucania, Chile

A MYSTICAL JOURNEY TO THE ROOTS OF EVOC

EVOC is about travelling. We´ve been to more than 50 destinations in the recent 20 years, looking for perfect powder lines and the best trails. Things were different back then. There wasn´t really good gear out there to travel with a bike - or a backpack with integrated back protector. Pretty obvious today, but for us initially the reason to start making such things - and to found EVOC as a result. That´s been 10 years ago, in 2008. Also in 2008 we went to the south of Argentina in winter and totally fell in love with those wonderful landscapes and especially with these beautiful Araucaria trees. 10 years later, we felt it was time to return to this part of the world that had such a strong influence on EVOC. Just the initial 3 of us looking for good trails to ride bikes and capturing the best moments of our journey. And to learn more about those mystical trees that gave name to this region: Araucaria!“

The first ride on a new adventure always feels a bit special. Long arrival, weak legs after hours on the plane and tons of new impressions to handle. But after a few miles on the bike, the stoke is back! A good time to familiarise ourselves with our surroundings and to get a feel for biking in this region. Such an exciting landscape, with unbelievable trails and awe-inspiring mountains! We could hardly wait to discover more!

The original people of Araucania are the Pewenche who belong to the indigenous people of the „Mapuche“, the „people of the land“. „Pewen“ is the native name for the Araucaria tree. „Pewenche“ means „people of the araucaria“ as they used to live from the seeds and the wood. Chief Joaquim warmly welcomes us with a traditional „Matetun“ ceremony and tells about their life-long fight for the last remaining trees and the Pewenche`s close relation to nature. Today their biggest effort is to preserve the Araucaria habitats. „Everything in nature has a spirit, a godly representation. So one must ask for permission from the spirits and say a prayer of thanks before using something from the environment.“

After 10 years of working closely together, without any compromise to our initial idea, we can feel the spirit is still there and deserves the same kind of respect. It is this kind of passion that brought us here. A gift, that can´t be valued high enough.

At the end of days filled with countless numbers of experiences and sensations, and terrific tours and trails, each one seemingly better than the one before, we sit around the camp fire of an evening and talk about the best trips we have made together in recent years. Chile - and in particular this mystical region of Araucaria - is quite surely one of the out-and-out highlights. And it is still the case that we always end up talking about the products and details that we know we definitely have to further improve on in future.

Araucaria Tree: Everything big starts small. And everything with substance needs time to grow. Araucarias have been around for 90 million years and the oldest ones are over 1000 years old. Some of these old trees look like dinosaurs from the past. Watching the world from high above. And if you are quiet enough, they will tell you their story.