Day 20 Friday – The beginning of the end of France

Today with the temperatures thankfully waning, we cycled 104 km from Baume-les-Dames to Carspach. We cycled most of the day beside the Le Doubs river and Canal du Rhone au Rhin.

At one stage in the morning the Veloroute moved away from the river and we had some very hilly kilometres but then calm was restored. We had a lovely afternoon with the wind behind us and a lovely flat cycle along the Canal du Rhone au Rhin. Denis uses the Strava app each day to record our cycles. It’s interesting that the above was my general comment on the day’s cycle. However when I look at the Strava record – below is what it showed. I hadn’t realised that the day was a continuous, gradual uphill climb. The total elevation gain in the day was 695 metres – not nothing. The wind in our backs probably helped us more than I even realised.

We are nearing the eastern border of France – tomorrow we should reach Switzerland.

Today we came upon a bicycle shop in the village just before our stop for the night. We had hoped to get the bikes serviced but that was not possible. I bought a new basket for my bike and I feel like all my Christmases have come. The front basket I had was old and difficult to attach. My new one feels luxurious! We have so little with us on this trip that the few things we have, have to work well.

Though we each have two panniers on the back of our bikes, I find I can work out of one, and the other contains stuff that’s spare now e.g. no cycling jacket needed these days, no jacket needed for the evening, spare shoes. Everything is packed in ziplock bags which make unpacking/packing the one pannier I’m using daily so easy.

The front basket contains the stuff needed during the day while cycling (suncream, snacks, phone, etc )

Life is so simple with so few things. Sometimes we over complicate life with stuff! Marie Kondo would be very happy 🙂

Having so little means that getting out in the morning is also simple. We got faster at this in the hot weather when we wanted to get on the road early. We can now do from alarm going off to ready for breakfast in half an hour, (with bikes packed ready to go).

The list of requirements for our accommodation however is increasing. Denis is now looking for accommodation where there are no hills to make his evening run easier 🙂  He’s half in earnest about this but it is tough when we get in after a long day’s cycling to find that the accommodation we have booked is up a massive hill! It’s happened twice – in Sancerre and in Baume-les-Dames last night. So our needs are now increasing to: food available in the evening +good wifi + air conditioning if it’s hot + no hills!

Speaking of good wifi – I’d like to introduce a new sign for hot or cold wifi! Many, many years ago travelling around the countryside in Ireland, one would see signs for B&Bs stating hot and cold water – yes running water and especially hot was worth stating on the sign outside – Hard to believe nowadays! Most accommodations where we stay on this trip have wifi but boy, some of it is so cold. Normally people are worried about download speeds, I’m much more interested in upload speeds for uploading photos. Upload speeds at some accommodations is very, very slow. Yes I’m thinking of that sign for hot or cold wifi!

We stayed at a beautiful hotel (with air conditioning) and had a most delicious dinner. Yet if I was there still I wouldn’t have uploaded a single photo – the wifi was so slow. I even moved down to work at reception to be nearer the router but no joy there either. It’s funny that particular hotel was much nicer than our ‘Fawlty Towers’ on Wednesday night but ‘Fawlty Towers’ had super fast wifi. There’s no telling!

We’re in the Alsace region of France and it’s interesting to note the Germanic twist to place names. Not surprising really in Alsace since this area oscillated back and forth from German to French control. We’re staying in Carspach, other places nearby – HagenbachHirtzbach.

Now some photos from today:

Breakfast at our lovely accommodation in hilly Baume-les-DamesIMG_3486

And the town itselfIMG_3488

These past few days we have travelled through valleys with very rocky sides.IMG_4878

IMG_4880

Still stunning views as we cycleIMG_3512

I love the haze that can be seen in the early morningIMG_3514

IMG_3517

 

This is the sign we meet when we have to share our cycle route with cars

 

 

 

 

 

 

Machine at work cleaning away vegetation from the waterIMG_3523

Loving these ‘flattened’ variety of peaches!

Up close and personal with a car transporterIMG_3530

Lovely hot dinner in our cold wifi hotel

Good night Carspach!

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3 Responses to Day 20 Friday – The beginning of the end of France

  1. Maire Buckley says:

    Another great report Lily, – I love your take on hot and cold wifi!! 🙂

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  2. lilinator says:

    Thanks Maire! The quality of wifi is the serious hill for the writing cyclist 🙂

  3. Maire Buckley says:

    And a new basket!! The joy of something simple that makes life easier!! 🤗🤗

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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