Got back around midnight last Friday…

It’s been busy. We had a whirlwind last few days in France; last Wednesday we did an out & back to see the stage on the Ancizan, a climb we’d not done before. Not my preference to do it as an out & back; that long run from Bagneres de Bigorre to Lourdes is not a lot of fun with quite a bit of junk climbing. Normally we’d ride out to a stage like that, and then ride down one of the valleys afterward, to a place like Lannamezan, and take the train back. But due to the high temps, they’d cancelled a lot of the rail service that day. We did some packing that night, and then had our last BIG day on Thursday, even though it wasn’t a very long ride. Out the bike path to the base of the Hautacam, and then up, up, up and more up. Got some great photos and made it back to our hotel at a reasonable hour (around 7:45pm I think).

No bike mishaps this year and the only “mechanical” was having to replace a tire on Kevin’s bike when he tore some of the tread away.

Thusday, just to give us a scare, we got messages saying the train to Toulouse (where we’d be catching our flight home) could be delayed. Fortunately it wasn’t, and we made it to the airport without issue. Full planes everywhere; traveling these days is NOT fun! Even less fun when it turns out Kevin has let his Global Entry expire, so when we arrived in Denver, we spent a good hour in immigration and TSA lines. That ain’t happening again!

We landed in San Jose about 10:45pm, another long travel day, but nice to be home. This trip was a bit more complicated than most, since we stayed in both the Alps and Pyrenees. 5 rides in the Alps, 4 rides in the Pyrenees. One long travel day on the train in-between. I think that’s one more day on the bike than our usual. Two “tour intercepts” we couldn’t make, the first due to our misconnections getting to Grenoble, the second from cancelled trains (again, due to heat). So 5 total tour intercepts, including the two best stages of the TdF this year (and maybe the past few decades)- the stages that ended on the Col du Granon (where Vingegaard first put the hammer down) and Hautacam, with its insane descent of the Spandelles.

The memorable non-‘Tour rides? The very first ride we did, Tuesday… the Chamrousse… memorable because it was a really bad choice for a first ride! So much harder than I expected. And then, in the Pyrenees, we had a great ride over the Spandelles, and another on the relatively-obscure Cambasque.

Upon returning home, Kevin too the day off Sunday while I did West Alpine. Didn’t feel particularly good; still feeling the jet lag. This morning, on the regular Tuesday Kings ride, I felt much better!

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