A blast from the past: snippets from a notebook.
In which I wonder if I’ve missed something and might need to go back and get it at some point.
The end of the road: the harbour wall at Collioure.
The penultimate day over and on more Bezes to hunt down. 160km and over 2000m of climbing makes it one of the bigger days, whilst another problematic achilles, one blown tyre and an 80km/h descent make it one of the more eventful on the road.
Tomorrow, no more big hills. Just the run down the coast…
Still a very long afternoon ahead of me, but somewhere off stage there’s a fat lady gargling.
For whatever reason, and much to my surprise as I could barely walk last night, the achilles was entirely fine today from the moment I got on the bike. Maybe it was good luck from the obligatory ‘
Englishman cycling in France’ Tom Simpson hat (not that it brought Tom much luck) but I even had…
This morning went splendidly: cracking progress and then a huge lunch for next to no money. But after Bez 8 my right achilles went wrong and despite doing about 15km almost entirely on one leg it’s seen me pull up 10km short to wait for the broom wagon. Hopefully some rest and a gobful of…
This one’s parked 350m up on a hill but I don’t care because you see that? I’ve got bloody sunglasses on! It’s warm and dry and if it carries on my shoes might even dry out.
Oh look, it’s pissing down again.
Anyone who’s ridden a bike any distance will know that songs get stuck in your head, and you have no control over them. Today I was stuck with a couple of hours of just the first verse of Take it Easy by the Eagles, then a couple more of just…
The first of two today, both of which are placed inconveniently on tops of hills. Observant readers will note the absence of panniers. Yes, I am now cheating and they are riding in the car, but I’m not keen on repeating Sunday’s wretchedness.
The third Bez, at roughly the halfway point of the route. The rain is becoming a little tiresome now, not so much on the bike but more for having to put on wet clothes and shoes in the morning. Not to mention, of course, the complete lack of scenery: everything is obscured by cloud. Still,…
The second river Bez, encountered today on a 184km ride which, despite being the longest on the tour, was far better than yesterday’s. The rain, however, grows ever more persistent – I arrived at the hotel soaked and with no hairdrier or heating in the room, I shall depart ready-soaked tomorrow.
I forgot to hold up two fingers for it but I did that earlier for the Lautaret picture so use your imagination.
Also picked up the first river today, the Torrent du Bez.
Some climbs are enjoyable. Others are difficult but satisfying. The western ascent of the Lautaret is a horrible, soul-destroying bastard of a climb, and I’m never riding up it again.
A break in the rain, for now at least.
Last night vindicated the decision to stay in hotels instead of a tent. Not only was the food excellent, but I was woken in the night by a(nother) almighty storm which sent patio furniture flying past my window. I doubt the tent would have survived. I noticed…
Some posts haven’t appeared, nor has the Flickr picture, so, apologies; no =
idea why this is as I tested it before leaving=2E You may have to wait till=
I get back=2E
I arrived at my destination today with the usual sense of relief – a job do=
ne=2E Things started going off the boil when I discovered the hotel was a f=
urther 6km north, which added a noticeable climb to tomorrow’s already daun=
ting route, also tipping it over the 100 mile mark=2E On arrival I’m asked =
I’ve not even set off yet and it’s detour time already.
By all accounts (well – one here and another here, at least) the Galibier has no chance of being open next week. No surprises there, but the Croix de Fer is also looking deeply unlikely to be passable.
Change of route, then – bypassing Aix les…
Well, it’s about time I posted this. Too much other stuff to do and an ever-worsening home Internet connection are to blame (I’m now down to just one of my commonly-visited sites that seems to work regularly for me, and it’s not this one – hopefully a new ISP as of next week will cure…