………Sunlounge, snorkel, “sunnies”, stacks of sun lotion, …… whoops …… oh ……. I’m meant to be discussing Mark’s checklist and final preparations for his “Tour de España” ……. El Camino Challenge!
Yes, it’s all systems go at our “training camp”. As Bev writes this, Mark is out clocking up more saddle hours!! After reading more detail about the long steep ascents (mountains) on his CAmino De Santiago 750km bike route, he has increased his training intensity!
You may ask, “What is the population of France in 2014?” In short, A LOT!! …… 66 million and we know where they all are!!?……
Yep, they are down here with us in the South of France at the beach, in Cap d’Agde! Don’t know what the sand looked like as you couldn’t see any! Beach umbrellas and bronzed bodies everywhere! We managed to squeeze Bruce into a camping spot for one night & whilst we enjoyed the summer holiday atmosphere, we soon ventured inland again!
On Friday morning, feeling euphoric after experiencing the Tour de France “parade” but also sad to say “au revoir” to our new friends Lise and Arnold (Norway) and Jon and Fin (UK) we descend the Col du Tourmalet. What a change in weather! The day of the Tour was near perfect conditions for cycling – contrasting with today’s rain and low clouds!
Tally – Ho Bruce!!….. onward and upward and upward…. and upward!!!!
Heavy morning cloud makes visibility very difficult as we approach our camping destination; La Mongie, in the Haute Pyrenees. Pulling off the road we can only see 10 metres ahead and make a judgement call not to go any higher. This is where we will wait the three days for the Tour de France!! Bruce finds a suitable position in an aire (free car park really), 1.5km from the small ski town of La Mongie. The book says “room for 100 camping cars”, we counted 152 on the first night, but when the Tour de France finally descended upon us, we guess close to 400 in our “spot”.
A day in the life of the intrepid travellers!! Mmmm…… Firstly, there are no alarm clocks…… we wake up hen our bodies have had enough “shut-eye!” Long days with the sun setting late …. It can be 10:30 before it is dark & much latter before we can seep! All this sight-seeing & exploring can be pretty exhausting at times…. No joke!! (We sometimes plan and research late into the night about where our next destination is and the route, etc. Continue reading A day in the life…
It’s bucketing down here – raining “cats ‘n’ dogs”! So much for Bev experiencing her first “summer” birthday!! Managed a two hour beach walk before the heavens opened……. It is still a pleasant 23° C though!
Bruce bravely ventures along “challenging”, narrow, winding mountain passes as he heads to northern Spain. At times we have to breath-in & pray when we approach oncoming traffic! Cliffs / rock overhangs, with many blind corners and bus/trucks rounding the bend at any moment!! With such large rock overhangs it is impossible for Bruce to hug his side of the road!?!