Well, yesterday’s storm certainly put paid to any ideas of a late afternoon ride – the rain came down in sheets, with proper Alpine thunder and lightning, and it only stopped as light fell. It even prevented my garden-reclamation scything. The weather is no respecter of cyclists’ plans, as the riders in the Tour de France this week would attest.
This morning presented a completely different prospect, both in the physical evidence – clear air and blue skies – and in the lack of forecast storms later in the day, which has been the norm. So a longer ride was called for, to remind the legs and body what they will be doing for the next six weeks or so.
With a brisk northerly wind forecast, I picked a triangular route, with the wind on my back down to La Charce, then tacking back to Saoû and then Die along the Drôme. The route afforded plenty of photographic opportunities: the first few are from the road down to La Charce, then some of the slightly bonkers road towards Berlières, as it does battle with the geology, and finally a spectacular field of lavender on the descent from Pas de Lauzun near Aouste. The harvesting of lavender is just getting going here, and the scent is filling the air.