Poitiers - Lussac les Chateaux - Livin' the Dream: France to Portugal 2021 - CycleBlaze

September 6, 2021

Poitiers - Lussac les Chateaux

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Grateful for Ride with GPS, ice-cream on a hot day and a good night's sleep.

Our best start ever had us on our way out of Poitiers by 8:45.  A quick downhill, across the bridge and straight back up hill. Our hearts were pumping furiously but in the cool of a morning start, it felt good.

This is our first trip using the Ride with GPS app and, like any program, it took a few days to figure out, but now we quite like it to track where we have been - even if we usually forget to add the maps onto our daily reports!  Today was the first time we trusted it to determine our route, at least out of the city. Steve had already picked the country roads from Poitiers back to the Vienne River and the EuroVelo 3, but getting out of any city at morning rush-hour with a loaded bike can be hell if one gets on ‘unfriendly’ roads.  Thrilled to say that Ride with GPS found us a combination of very quiet lanes and busy streets with bike lanes. Once out of town it was an idyllic cycling day with quiet smooth roads and superb vistas of fields, the river and yes, a nuclear power plant. 

We stopped at the lovely 19th century Église Sainte Hilaire in Valdivienne, attracted to its shaded courtyard and benches. After popping into the church we had our first snack break of the day, appreciating being out of the hot 30C sunshine for an hour. 

Making good time, we arrived at the campsite at 2pm.  It was a municipal campground, which we have found to be simpler than the commercial ones and without activities like pools or inflatable play areas, but with all the basics, clean facilities and very reasonable. We put up the tent, showered and then headed into town for some lunch.

Of course this is rural France, so we were foiled trying to find anything to eat at 3pm.  We settled in at the only open cafe in town and happily indulged in the only thing close to food available -ice-cream bars- while chatting with a couple from London who were heading home after spending the summer at their rambling farmhouse near Toulouse.

The grocery store was open, so we picked up fixings for a salad supper and made an early night of it, reading our books until we nodded off.  We never found out why the town is called Lussac-les-Chateaux as we never saw anything like a chateau. 

After a week we feel we are remembering why we love cycle touring.

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Today's ride: 45 km (28 miles)
Total: 309 km (192 miles)

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