Tuesday 15 May 2012

France Cycle Tour: Sault to Pont St-Esprit

Poppy's near Monieux
I knew today would be a long day, kind of a transition day. But before the flatlands of the Rhone, I had the much anticipated Gorges de le Nesque to cycle, the D942 follows the rim of the gorge, amazing views and therefore lots of stops for pictures meant almost 3hours to cover 27 kilometres almost all downhill. The road has to use tunnels at some of the steeper parts.
Tunnels on the descent of the Gorges de le Nesque

Gorges de le Nesque
There were lots of day cyclists climbing to the viewpoint near the top, I'm sure it must be a popular local testpiece. Once down in the valley the wind swung round to be a westerly, right on my nose. The temperature soared towns and villages came and went as I headed for the hydro barrages near Caderousse. There are limited opportunity's to cross the Rhone, it is a huge river. Caderousse was lovely little village surrounded by a defensive wall, not to keep humans out, but the River Rhone (tamed now by hydro and locks)
Town Hall Caderousse
It was a bit of a slog as I followed the Rhone northwards on its wet bank. I saw a site next to the Ardeche river and although a little short of my target I'd had enough, 110.49 kilometres, much of it into a headwind. The site is great and like all the others very quiet.

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