Day 3: The Alpe

Posted: June 6, 2011 in Uncategorized

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Miles Cycled: 21
Altitude Gain: 1850m (6070ft)

Woke up at 0330 to find the Airbed had completely deflated and we were lying frozen on the stone tiled floor of the amenities building. Got up just.before 0700 and pitched the tent while the kettle boiled.

After a breakfast of Pain au Chocolat and Powerbars, we set off the 6km into town and the foot of The Alpe.

21 hairpins, 1789 calories, 1hr 40mins, and 8 miles later we reached the finish line used bt the Tour de France.

After a Nutella crepe (JF), a jambon baguette (BF), and two pints of full fat coke, it was time to head back for the bottom. Even with 3 photo stop, the descent took all of 15 minutes.

Pizza for tea and an early night.
Tomorrow we are heading off to watch Stage 2 of the Criterium du Dauphine, looking to stand somewhere on one of the climbs and cheer on The Shack!

Allez!

J&B

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Top of The Alpe!

Posted: June 6, 2011 in Uncategorized

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Made it! Tour de France finish 1km further than the town centre.

Helmets off and caps on for the photo taken by an Italian couple!

Better photos later.

J&B

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Miles today: 674
Miles to date: 1300

Early train over to Calais then a couple of stops before heading South.

Took a short detour to Roubaix where an extremely kind man let us onto the Velodrome itself! Superb to have a wander round and walk the finishing straight and bankings.

Next stop Arenburg to walk along the trench. Unbelieveable that the Pave get ridden at 50kph when it is difficult to even walk on some areas! Couldn’t risk running the bikes here as I imagine we would have ended up needing four new wheels!

Arrived at the campsite at 2200 in the dark and pouring rain. It was raining so hard that the owner said we could sleep on the floor of the amenities building rather than try to pitch our tent.

Hopefully tomorrow will be dry and we can get the tent pitched and The Alpe done.

J&B

Dunkirk

Posted: June 5, 2011 in Uncategorized

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Passed by just before turning south.

Almost 61 years ago to the day, our Papa stood on these beaches, up to his armpits in the water along with the rest of the retreating British Army.

338,226 men were rescued by a flotilla of military and civilian boats between 27th May and the 4th June 1940.

J&B

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Miles covered today: 431
Miles to date: 626

Travelled from Annan to Folkestone and ended the day with two pints of the local pubs finest Doggie Duber** real ale.

With tomorrow having an early start, we decided to have a quick recce of the Chunnel location and ended up trapped in the check-in area being asked if we wanted to travel today. With no accomodation booked on the French side for tonight, we had no option but to declare ourselves idiots and ask to be let out and return in the morning. After a bit of too-ing and froing, we were allowed to pass through, tails firmly  between our legs.

At least we know the score for tomorrow.

Pain au Chocolat and strong coffee for breakfast and a 0700 train under the Channel to France.

Allez!

J & B

** Names have been changed to protect the innocent: “Doggie Duber” may not have been the name of the ale but in our heads and memories it will always be!

Nearly there!

Posted: June 4, 2011 in Uncategorized

Only 200 million millimeters to Folkestone !!!!

Final preparations are being made – new boots and bar onto the Trek – Cheers BPF for the bar! – service on Friday.

Now pulling together all of the other bits and pieces needed for the camping as well as trying to get some more climbing in.

Boots & Bar

Schwalbe Ultremo R1s and a Ritchey WCS Logic II Bar