To Les Eyzies - Three Seasons Around France: Autumn - CycleBlaze

October 1, 2022

To Les Eyzies

The weather for the past several days has been uneven and hard to predict.  Days that looked like they might be uniformly grey have opened up with windows wide enough to fit our miles into; and other days that promised to do so turned just a bit drizzly.  You don’t really know until the time arrives just what you’ll be dealing with.

So even though we weren’t optimistic, there was at least the hope that we’d get a window today wide enough to fit our 30 mile ride to Les Eyzies through it.  Hopes are dashed this morning though when we check the weather forecasts this morning.  Weather.com is the most optimistic predictor today, and even it shows showers or worse until late afternoon.  We resign ourselves to a grey, soggy day and plan to pack for it.

Behind my back though, Rachael’s surreptitiously been conducting some research.  There’s a bus, she suddenly announces.  I’m lukewarm at best to this idea - who wants to bike to the bus station, find out if they’ll even take bikes, and then toss them into the hold hoping they come out whole at the other end just to avoid three hours of unpleasantness.

Then, a more acceptable idea: there’s a train!  That hadn’t occurred to me.  I didn’t realize that the train network extended into the interior here.  We research it a bit further, confirm that she’s right and the schedule works out (and that it’s a regional, not the dreaded TGV), and quickly agree - it’s easily worth 8.80€ each to ride through the rain, as long as we’re lucky enough to have the option available.  We’ll save our getting wet for days when there really is no choice.

A half hour later we’re packed and out the door, coasting a half mile to the Perigueux station.

Our apartment in Peregueux, Les Peribleu. Very comfortable and livable. We’d stay here again. It’s an interesting layout - listed as a studio, but the bedroom/bath is separated off by a wall and door. Not one that affords any extra privacy though.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Another interesting old staircase. Our unit is on the first floor (one floor up from ground level, of course), but I walked to the top for a look down at our bikes parked at the bottom. It’s too dark down there to see them, except for that tiny dot of light from the reflector of one of the pedals.
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Keith AdamsAnd no toes this time!
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Keith AdamsYup. I was thinking of you.
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1 month ago
Jen GrumbyVertiginous!
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1 month ago

It’s confusing when we arrive at the station, because it’s packed with people listening to a presentation of some sort.  It could be a political rally or something like that, but for us it’s an impediment.  At first I was afraid they were folks hoping to catch a train and waiting for news of it - the website warned that there might be cancellations today because of my track maintenance work.  We knew that when we coasted down, and were at least somewhat prepared for the idea that we’ll be biking after all.

It’s not that though thankfully, as I find when I weasel my way through the masses to the ticket office on the far side and get our tickets.  We proceed to our departure gate (through an underpass, with no elevator - it’s a good thing we got here in plenty of time).  While we’re there we suddenly hear drums and look back.  There’s a group performing back in the lobby, so I hustle back for a closer look before it’s time to board. 

A little morning music.
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Whiteout conditions. We’re relieved to be spared biking in them.
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It’s an easy, comfortable ride on a modem train - easy to roll the bikes on and off, and even though there are vertical mounts for the bikes the train is almost empty this morning so we just lean the bikes against the wall.

The train isn’t quite empty though.  As we’re boarding we strike up a conversation with another couple, both Americans, and are stunned to learn that they live in Tucson and are bikers themselves!  They’re also on their way to Les Eyzies, the starting point of their two week bike tour through the Dordogne.  The time goes quickly as we talk about cycling in general and life in Tucson.  Jane types her email into my phone so we can contact them, and as we disembark we agree that we’ll let them know what our plans are for lunch or dinner after we check in to our hotel.

Unfortunately, once we manage to find our hotel (no mean feat), we find that the email they’ve given us is invalid.  I try a couple of obvious variants, but without success so we proceed to the nearest open restaurant for lunch while we wait for when we can check in.

So, John and Jane, if you remembered to look us up on CycleBlaze, we tried!  Register on the site (free, and easy to do), leave us a comment so we can contact you, and let’s hook up in Tucson this winter.  Or, maybe Jane intentionally gave us a false email just as a polite brush-off?

Rachael’s in seventh heaven hearing of how fine life in Tucson is.
Heart 4 Comment 0
We can’t get into our hotel yet; and once we do we’ll find there’s no covered space for the bikes so we’llleave them here in side this tunnel.
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Nicely helps to pass the time until the hotel opens up.
Heart 4 Comment 4
Keith AdamsA change in the focus of the Research Project...
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1 month ago
Patrick O'HaraA local wine, I see?
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Patrick O'HaraOui bien sûr!
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1 month ago
Kathleen ClassenWe just drank a whole bottle of wine which completely sapped any desire to head out for a 9 PM Spanish dinner. Not necessarily a bad thing!
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1 month ago

Today's ride: 1 mile (2 km)
Total: 483 miles (777 km)

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Carolyn van HoeveSorry Scott & Rachael- I think we stole your weather gods. Thank you very much! We headed down through Carpentras today under perfect, very hot blue Provençal skies. All the layers were off and hottest weather we’ve had to date. Happily our raincoats have remained packed away throughout this tour. Heading to Arles tomorrow and then back to Lyon on the train and sadly home. It will be nice to remain in France vicariously with you. It’s been the most wonderful time.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Carolyn van HoeveThat’s so great the weather cooperated for you! This is really the best time to travel in France, I think. Crowds have thinned out and the weather is stable, until it isn’t. I’m sorry you have to return so soon though. Couldn’t you tell the airlines you caught Covid and have to wait another ten days before you can fly again?
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1 month ago