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Our "bio" breakfast included porridge oats, raisins, homemade jams, toast and coffee served in proper-sized mugs. The coffee here has been great, but just sometimes we crave big mugfuls of it rather than the piddly little cups that most places serve.
We faffed about a bit while packing up, subconsciously delaying our departure and another 20 km of uphill cycling.
We were blessed with good weather again, clear blue ...
... pines and mélèze, the heat and the scent from the pines reminded us of Lacanau. The road surface is excellent for most of the ascent, and there is a marked cycle lane on the right hand side of the road. It doesn't get much better than that!
From the elevation profile we were expecting a constant climb, but after a few kilometres the road levels and there is a slight descent before climbing again, offering some respite for the legs.
After the terrible weather on ...
No cycling today!
We've looked back on some trips we've done in the past and thought it would've been nice to spend more than a single evening in one place, so for this trip we planned a day off.
Paul Henderson in his 'Cycling the French Alps' book recommends Briançon as a good place to spend a day off the bike, so we took his advice.
Briançon is the highest city in France, at 1,326 m. Our hotel, 'Le Temple' is ...
... look at elevation profiles I don't actually believe them, but we could have free wheeled for the first 20km of our ride today. We made the most of it.
St. Jean de Maurienne is the town at the foot of the Col du Télégraphe. We stopped briefly just to take a layer of clothing off before starting the climb. The first few kilometres meander through a residential area before rising through woodland, revealing impressive views of the valley we had just cycled ...
... an altitude of 2,802 m (9,193 ft), but this is not a "pass", but merely a scenic loop. It is, however, the highest asphalted road in France and is the highest through road in Europe.
Again, after being geographically challenged, well to be fair not going on far enough to find the next turn point, we have found ourselves in the village of Isola.
We have managed to get into a cabin in the campsite, ...