Alex Bikes

Ottawa bike politics.

Day 7 : Luchon to Campan

65km, 1750m of climb.

After a day of resting the knees, it started out again on the Col de Peyresourde (1569m), which is a good 900m climb.  But my knees were rested, and I had the intention of covering Col d´Aspin and Tourmalet in one day. But it rained an awful lot. After Peyresourde, I coasted down in the rain to Arreau. There, I sat in a restaurant and had a pizza for lunch with a glass of wine, all in the hopes of warming up.

Biking in all this was pretty crappy. Coming down d´Aspin,  couldn´t see 20m in front of me, so had to slow down incredibly. I figured the beauty of the last two cols was shot because of the weather, it might be worth waiting another day for Tourmalet.

I was pulling in to Campan, which has a great Tour de France legacy. Eugene Christophe in 1913 was whipping down Toumalet and his fork failed. The rule in those days was you had to repair your own bicycle, so Eugene walked down the mountain and found a forge, and fixed the fork himself. He he didn´t win the stage or the tour.

So I found this cheap place (25 euros) which is covered with Tour de France paraphenalia. I wandered over to the epicerie and bought a can of beer and read my book a bit. Around 7:30, I figured I should try to find some dinner. There´s just one cheap restaurant that looked okay, but I couldn´t stomach yet another pizza (everything else was sold out). So I hightailed it on over to the epicerie, and was stopped at the door. The owner told me the store closed at 8pm, and what did I need? I said a baguette and a bottle of wine. He could have just gotten both of them for me, but told him that so that I´d learn that 8pm was the closing time, he wouldn´t sell me the wine. Nice.


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