Day 11: Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Bagneres de Bigorre to Foix (Pyrenees)
181 km, 2194 m of climbing

This is mountain day. The stats for the day look rather good, climbing is not significantly different from earlier days we spent in Normandy or Brittany. So, what the big deal?

elev day 11

In fact, the day should be nice; I just hope the traffic up the pass road won’t bother us that much. In any case, the ascent is quite doable, not as steep as it could be – actually, riding up from the other side of Col d’Aspin would be harder. The most difficult aspect of the morning is that we get into climbing gear right from the camp ground. The first 27 km are just one big uphill. The best way to tackle the mountain is to gear down and to take it easy. You don’t want your legs to close up; spin up rather than pushing.

Tour de France 2012 - 16a tappa Pau - Bagneres de Luchon 197 km - 17/07/2012 - Veduta - PN/BettiniPhoto©2012

The downhill is only 10 km with a couple of hairpin turns, so you want to control your speed. Once down, the route follows a river valley with a downhill trend for the next 60 km. Riding should be a blast if the roads a clear. About 90 km into the ride we will reach Saint Gaudens (the track bypasses the town) – I recommend this place to take a lunch rest stop.

In the afternoon, the remaining 90 km won’t be hard. We leave the valley at about 104 km to climb over a hill and to dip into the next but smaller valley of another of the many rivers springing from the mountains. We will follow that river up until we get to Saint Girons. There, the track turns west for a final bit of rollers along an even smaller river. which has two longer climbs (not steep, just be patient) before it drops down to Foix, the destination for the day.

The campground is just a few km up the road north.

Accommodation: reservation confirmed

camping foix

    © Josef Janning 2017