Everywhere you look … Mount Ventoux.
Looming up above, off in the distance … daring brave cyclists to climb to the summit. This is the view from our hotel window here at the Hotel La Garance in Sainte Colombia, a few Ks outside of Bedoin, which is one of the base towns below the Ventoux.
The summit of the Ventoux is the white cap way off in the distance.
Tomorrow we get our bikes, and begin riding. And, get this, Susan is getting a E-Bike, something we didn’t even think about until earlier today when we went to one of the bike rental places in Bedoin. And saw they had E-Bikes.
Maybe, just maybe, she will attempt the Ventoux on Tuesday with me.
Or maybe, we’ll do it on Sunday, as the weather forecast still calls for lots of wind on Monday and Tuesday (my birthday). The guy at the bike-rental place said there will be gusts of 100 Ks (62 MPH). At least it won’t be snowing.
So, here’s something I learned today that’s hard to admit: Sometimes, when you tour Provence (or any other area) on a bike, you miss out on things.
I know, it pains me to write this, but it’s true.
Let me explain…
Today, we meandered our way over to Bedoin in our rental car, stopping in four of the Ventoux villages: Roaix, Rasteau, Cairanne and Crestet. All were little stone towns hundreds of years old on the top of hills of varying heights. I’ve cycled through all of them before, stopped, looked around a bit … and kept riding.
We parked and wandered through each village, through the narrow stone streets, past the cathedrals and old houses, up and up to see the amazing views.
The photo above is from our walk to the top of Rasteau, and this one is from the top of Cairanne…
Crestet was probably our favorite of the four. It was the most medieval of the towns.
Here’s a couple of photos from Crestet…
OK, tomorrow we get our bikes and begin riding. There are at least two bike-tour groups staying in our hotel, including La Vie En Velo, a British group. Some of their riders are going to do the Ventoux tomorrow, and a couple brave souls are going to do the three times in one day thing. I did this back in 2010 … and it was and is one of my most memorable days of cycling ever.
Once is probably enough. Per day. But I may have to do two ascents, one from Bedoin, and another from Sault.