Saturday, May 26, 2012

Cycle Touring Day 56

Another great day in the saddle but I pretty much had every kind of weather today - apart from snow!

When I woke it was cloudily and overcast and as I headed into Brest itself if gradually grew darker. Seeing signs for E. Leclerc I began to feel hungry so I followed the first one (up a climb from the coast) only to find that it was an internet shopping collection branch, something akin to Argos! As I headed back towards my route in annoyance I passed an E. Leclerc distribution centre and just as I was was cursing my luck once again, I spied the supermarket version around the next corner. No sooner had I got in the door than the heavens opened. I only realised that it was rain though as all the staff and customers were looking up as the noise of the rain fell on the skylights. It steadily got heavier and heavier and as I sat on a bench just inside the main entrance eating my lunch and pressing my map, one of the loudest thunder storms I had ever heard passed over head. Perfect timing once again.

Once the rain had stopped I pressed on and was immediately able to cut out a 10km detour from my route as I had noticed on my map that a road crossed the river much closer than my sat nav had intended to take me. As we climbed out of Brest and headed south again the clouds gradually dispersed and for the rest of the day I cycled under a mainly clear blue sky.

As I approached onto the Crozon Peninsula I crossed over a wonderful new cable-stayed bridge, the Térenez Bridge spanning the river. I chatted with a chap who was taking photographs of the bridge and we exchanged stories about our cycling and walking adventures both in French and mime once again. Cycling up and away from the bridge, in a mild headwind, I cycled further onto the Crozon Peninsula before turning back and enjoying the tailwind, to head towards Châteaulin where I would be camping. En route back I began to climb steadily and was treated to some wonderful views across the landscape to the the south of the peninsula.

The climb did not feel particularly steep but I could see that we were quite high. I checked my sat nab elevation and was amazed to see we were over 200m above sea-level. We were skirting the Ménez-Hom hills and as I was in no hurry whatsoever to cover the remaining distance to camp, I plodded on slowly enjoying the scenery. The 15km descent into Châteaulin was nothing host of breathtaking. I barely peddled for almost a full hour and the breeze cooled both body and mind after another long day in the saddle.

Only the French, surely, would include such a glorious cycle path in the construction of such an immense bridge!

An arty bit.

The old bridge - now closed.

More arty stuff.

The old and the new, side by side.


  1. Absolutely wonderful! I am thoroughly enjoying your day to day journey and exploits. Thank you so much for taking me along with you.

    1. Well thank you so much for saying so and indeed enjoying the journey with me. My posts essentially are my electronic diary for family and friends to read, so I glad so many other people are enjoying them too :)

  2. i will be cycling in france in a few weeks - am enjoying your exploits. they are inspiring in me a great level of excitement!

  3. Excellent. Good luck. I hope you have as much fun as I am having :) where, roughly, will you be?

  4. Is it just me that prefers the old bridge?

    Just checked out where you are. Pressing on nicely now.