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Day 11 Riete to Monterotondo 45 miles 2850 ft of climbing

September 20, 2019

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Day 20 Ainhoa to St Jean Pied De Port

May 11, 2017

Today was always going to be a difficult day , both in terms of the biking and also emotionally as we were passing through places that Sandra and I had so many happy memories historic rallying  in.

I was also concerned that this the "main course" would be a difficult act to follow since  the "starter" we had yesterday.

Again the forecast was mixed , but we were blessed with great biking weather , sunny but not too hot. The Scenery was simply breathtaking we had eagles flying above us , and every corner we took revealed another treat.  This really was a sensory overload . I am not ashamed to admit I found the beauty of the surroundings coupled with the flooding of memories just too much to handle; however this is a major part of the purpose of the trip.

The biking was hard, two category two climbs saw us over two cols, the second being col d'Ispeguy. I was half way up the  climb some 7 miles long with a height gain of 600 meters when I recognised this road as being one we had done a stage on in our TR4, at that very moment I was passed by a red TR5! how spooky.

We arrived in St Jean Pied De Port - one of the very special places we stayed in many times , a very hard day's biking, but for me without doubt the hardest, most emotional, and most beautiful day of the trip, the main course was certainly  not spoiled by the starter .


I will post some more photos tomorrow, the internet is so slow here it takes 40 mins to upload  a single picture!











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