Up, up and Away: Smooth sailing to Lyon - French Alps 2017 - CycleBlaze

May 19, 2017

Up, up and Away: Smooth sailing to Lyon

It's a 9 hour flight from Vancouver to Amsterdam and although there always seems to be some anxiety about making all the connections, everything went extremely well. We were at our gates in plenty of time, even though the turnarounds were just over an hour in YVR and AMS. The flight crews and service from Westjet and KLM were top notch.

The coastal mountains and the Rockies were looking stunning from 41,000 feet on this sunny day.

Coast range of BC
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After 3 movies, dinner and breakfast we landed at Schiphol airport. While we waited at the gate for our Lyon flight, we watched with great satisfaction as our bikes and duffle bag were loaded onto the plane. YAY!!!

Our fianl leg with KLM -- Amsterdam to Lyon.
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Nearing Lyon, we could see the Alps in their splendour including the mighty Mt Blanc towering above them all.

French Alps
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As part of pre-trip planning, we always choose the first night's accommodation and in this case, we chose La Leva since our host, Virginie, said she would have no trouble storing our suitcases for the month and would be able to shuttle us to and from the airport. To top it off, her chambre d'hote is in the countryside about 10k north of LYS in the village of Villette d'Anthon, making it an ideal place to begin riding.

Within minutes of our arrival we were puffing Gitanes like locals (it's not really an option since 4 out of 5 people outside the terminal were smoking) and chatting with a local all about the trip. He lives across from Alpe d'Huez and told us to look him up in the bar at the top of the climb. It immediately made us feel welcome and excited about our next 4 weeks.

I fired up the Skype app on my ipad after connecting to the LYS internet and gave our host, Virginie, a call. She arrived shortly thereafter and drove us to her gorgeous chambre d'hote in Villette d'Anthon. It was about 2:00pm and the weather was a beautiful, sunny 24 degrees. She tried to entice us to use her pool but we chose to get horizontal for awhile instead. Then it was time to assemble the bikes and head to the village for dinner at the pizzeria, which was all of 1 block away. Yummm..our first french pizzas with salad and wine and a special treat from the owner, 2 Lemoncillo's served on ice. We were over the moon and ready to get this tour underway.

Entrance to the chambre d'hote.
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What a gorgeous room. You should have seen the bathroom! It was hard to leave the shower.
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Plaque on our room. So french!
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Bikes going together under the skilled hands of my master bike technician.
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La vegetarienne.
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This was a perfect post-flight meal.
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