On Sunday we rode up the valley to Prats du Perigord, a name that appeals to my childish nature and makes me smile. It is in fact a very pretty place, the church is most unusual with an extraordinary large flat bell-tower .
|église St Maurice|
From Prats we turned left towards le Bois de Foncave. I knew there would be a long hill ahead to negotiate and was relieved to find it quite an easy climb. A large sign informed us that the woodland we were riding alongside was a Parc du Nordic, an area designated for those hikers who like to propel themselves along with a couple of ski poles.
It was a very scenic route and I felt positively smug when we got to the top of the hill, looking out across the tops of the chestnut woods and a magnificent view of the surrounding countryside. (When we got home Paul consulted his trusty computer to inform me that there were fifty nine registered cyclists of that particular hill. We came fifty ninth! Maybe I should get myself some ski poles.)
We then dropped down to Le Got and cruised along the route nationale towards Villefranche, up Donkey Valley, through the woods and home. A pleasant ride but no wildlife encounters apart from two crows and a dead mole.
Today, as we set off on one of our regular local rides, I couldn’t help but think of that poor Dutch rider who crashed out of the road race in Brazil yesterday. One minute Annemiek van Vleuten was heading for a gold medal and the next moment she was lying unconscious in a gutter. Thankfully she was not too seriously injured.
Our route this morning took us along a very secluded valley and we were rewarded by the sight of a stag and then, further on, a young deer drinking from a stream at the side of the road. The countryside here is truly a wonderful and diverse environment for cycling.