Now before I fill you in on the day’s riding, I need to give a huge thanks to the kinds chaps below who got me back on the road by midday!  Given my time constraint to be in Nice by Saturday afternoon, I honestly thought my cycle trip was finished, especially considering the Hope BB needed a Hope tool to remove it.

Bart from Belgium who kindly drove me and my bike to Manosque.  Legend!

And the owner / mechanic of New Cycles in Manosque who went out of his way to fit new bearings even though he didn’t have the correct Hope tool. He could have said ‘Non’, but he got to work with his trusty dremmel to remove the outer racer from the bearing housing. I could have hugged him!

So with the biggest smile on my face I cycled out of Manosque to retrace my route. It was only midday and I couldn’t believe I was back on the road!

The day had one theme. Upwards!

A few pictures before the biggest climb of the trip from just after Moustiers-Ste-Marie to Source du Vaumale at 1180m

There were hoards of tourists wandering around the Lavender fields and taking odd photos of each other crouched down. Each to their own, but it did look watching people crouching down in a Lavender field holding an umbrella.

The view up to Moustiers-Ste-Marie

Now the following photos are of the climb. It wasn’t steep, but looong and my legs were like jelly at the top.

I’ll admit that by the time I reached the summit I was blowing.  That was a long climb and by now the water I was carrying was warm, but some kind person had installed one of these at the top.

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It was the freshest tasting water and boy did it feel good pouring a bottle over my head.

The effort was well worth it and the views were the most staggering of the whole trip.

I reached camp at Comps-sur-Artuby at 8pm. It would have been 750pm, but I was gagging for a cold beer and thankfully the bar in the town was open and still serving.

Dinner was spaghetti Bolognese which I’m sick of now, but it’s cheap and does the job. Hoping the gas will last one more day as it’s feeling pretty low.

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