Sunday, July 10, 2005

Alps Trip Day 4 - La Chapelle-en-Vecors to Mens

The started as badly as the one before ended well. Almost from the get go my knee began to hurt, and quite a lot too. They were so much so that my thoughts were with abandoning the trip then and there. A couple of changes in cleat position got me back to more or less back to where I was yesterday. From there the pain became manageable with the occasional massage. This got me over the col\tunnel de Rousset out of the Vercors. The way down was quite spectacular, clouds raced down the steep valley. Jagged rock cliffs lined the sides.

Down in Die I wondered again whether to continue, however a combination of my stubbornness and the lack of escape options kept me going. After Die I decided that if I was going to continue on my plan I would have to tackle a hill and see what happened. I picked the Col de Menee, with frequent stops to massage my knee I made it over. The way down was fantastic, with great views of Mont Aiguille. In the valley below I could see clouds heavy with rain. The last 10km into Mens I got soaked. In Mens I didn't even bother to check out the campsite, the was one hotel and that's where I stayed. In front of the hotel I net another cyclist, Markus from Finland. Later on I met him again going in the opposite direction as I was climbing the Galibier. We shared dinner, which was nice as I could easily have gotten depressed over my leg and the horrible weather.

Distance - 108km
Time - 6:50
Max Altitude - 1394m
Tot. Ascent - 1700m

Col de Rousset – 1254m
Col de Menee – 1457m

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