Profile photo for Brendan James
active 6 days ago

Brendan James

Originally from Vermont, USA I grew up in a ski town and biked during the summer. My college years I spent studying media and communication and working in the field of events / live production. I traveled the U.S. extensively for work eventually moving to Colorado in 2009 to pursue climbing and photography.

In 2012 I moved to Guatemala to work for a non-profit in media and marketing. I began training and competing in mountain bike moving up to the level of professional within the country and raced on the national cross country team. Since then I have been guiding foreigners in the sport and showing them why Guatemala is my favorite place to ride!

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I specialize in putting together multi-day custom mountain bike tours to suit the abilities and interests of the riders. I also specialize in connecting foreigners with the local cycling culture here in the form of events / travesías and races.

Seeing a country on a mountain bike does not have to be "extreme" and I feel it is the greatest way to explore the Mayan world, get outside of the traditional tourist bubble and see living culture off the map. Let me show you why I love Guatemala!"

How did you get involved in travel?

"I first got involved with travel as an adventure photographer - combining my love of mountain biking, climbing and mountaineering with media I began traveling to South and Central America about 14 years ago and fell in love with Latin culture as well as the enormous and varied terrain one can discover here.

With numerous biking and climbing expeditions under my belt throughout the Americas I decided to settle down in Guatemala. I can say undoubtedly that it is my favorite country to ride a bike. The combination of terrain, climate, and culture make it a mountain bike paradise. 6 years later and I am still exploring and discovering new amazing places here.

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"Throughout 2014-16 I spent the majority of my time traveling by bicycle and competing throughout the united states and Latin America. Stories of the kindness, and generosity of strangers abound - but for me, some of the most unforgettable experiences have come from Guatemala.

As a foreigner, I live away from my family and Guatemalans have reached out to fill in the space - inviting me to gatherings, or stopping in to check up on me with home-cooked meals when I get sick. Guatemalans recognize family is an integral part of life, kindness and friendship values much more than money here.