September 15, 2014

Arriving Nice!

As of today, Paris-Nice is accomplished! I arrived safely in Nice this afternoon, under grey skies and scanty rain showers. That was quite a bike ride, starting in northern France, finishing on the Mediterranean. In all, 17 days, including 3 recovery/exporing days; 48000 feet of climbing, with several dramatic, challenging climbs in the last part of the ride; and about 800 miles. Whooopeee!

Rain threatened this morning, with thunderstorms forecast for the afternoon, so instead of lingering, I left Entrevaux by 9:30.

There are virtually no photos for you today. The roads were heavily trafficked, the weather threatening, the scenery not so compelling, and I kept my head focused on the 4 feet in front of me and pedalled.

Never have I been so glad to see a bike path as this one, which led me from Pont Charles to Carros, then to St. Laurent du Var.

Not without confusion though. The path was frequently marked closed, but I continued anyway. An extremely nice cyclist in Carros helped me to find the way past the closed signs.

But amazingly enough, apparently I didn't get lost in the fast roads and urban confusion, and ended up where I aimed for. Nice! The Mediterranean!

Like my other trips that have ended on the Mediterranean, here are two photos of a place which inspires warm beaches everywhere, and very happily, will be my next trip

It ocurred to me a few days ago that this bicycle trip, Paris-Nice, is really an adventure in three movements:

1: Paris to the south. Days of about 60 miles, averaging 3500 feet of rolling climbing.

Interlude: Nyons and Vaison-la-Romaine, exploring history, enjoying recovery days.

Part 2: Climbing: Mont Ventoux, the Aps. The Alps really do continue just about to the Mediterranean, so, finishing in Nice.

Part 3: Coastal riding, city exploring. Nice, Menton, Grasse, yet to be determined.

So I hope you will stay with me. In the next several days I hope to explore the coastline in both directions, and to have a chance to visit some of Nice's famous museums. Unfortunately I also need to attempt to sort out travel arrangements, what with the Air France strike.

Stupidly, my camera is still on the blink, and I ditch multiple images for each one I publish. Now, I admit to liking my touring bike shoes, and I have unintentinally taken many photos of the front of them, but this is so odd I thought I'd close with it, goodness knows how or when I captured it!