To Saint-Victor-de-Malcap - You lead me away from home, just to save you from touring alone - CycleBlaze

May 7, 2022

To Saint-Victor-de-Malcap

The wind was very strong last night as Scott had to get out of bed and secure the shutters that  were banging against the building. The wind was still blowing forcefully as we made our way back to the dining room  for breakfast at Gîte en Cévennes  but the sky was perfectly clear. We had the room  almost to ourselves at 08:30 as the hikers that are staying here have already come and gone. We are not as keen I guess!  We enjoyed the views from our table window while watching the wind blow everything around.  That was  a bit of a concern as it was blowing directly from the direction in which we would be leaving Pont de Montvert.

Looking out our window at some passerbys. One has organized his bread for the day and the other two will be heading into the hills. Hiking is very popular in this area.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Breakfast time. Standard fare but good to get us going.
Heart 4 Comment 1
KAREN JONESGood to see you're starting your day with wine...
Reply to this comment
1 week ago
The bridge and the town.
Heart 6 Comment 0
The main street of La Pont de Montvert.
Heart 4 Comment 0

At 10 am we had loaded the bikes and we were making our way across the old bridge in a nasty side wind.   We turned right on to the town`s main street to continue up towards the headwaters of the the Tarn. The required climb began immediately and we were very surprised and more than a little pleased to find ourselves  somehow  hidden from the wind!  What luck!

Le col de la Croix de Berthel  was about 10 kms away and the  overall grade  was very manageable. We stopped as we crossed the Tarn for the last time and thought how fortunate it was  that we have been able to ride this route under such great weather and road conditions. It has been a great experience to ride this river from Albi! 

Our last crossing of the Tarn. We are very near the source now.
Heart 5 Comment 0
The last picture of the Tarn River. It has taken on so many shapes over the last five days.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Ta da! Next year`s Christmas card already done.
Heart 9 Comment 1
KAREN JONESWhat!?? You send Christmas cards?
Reply to this comment
1 week ago

After passing through some beautifully pastoral settlings, we found our selves at the col and turned our bikes toward Saint Vincent de Malcap, our destination for the day. But, first we rode a massive downhill - dropping 500 metres over the next 10 kms on a serpentine road. We  passed over several rivers that were taking the water from the vast slopes above us.   Le Rieutort, Le Drelieiréde, Le Bourdaric are all very close together and have large rock bridges over them. It was an incredible journey down to Vialas where we stopped for our morning coffee.

Such a beautiful area.
Heart 2 Comment 0
Reaching the top on a near perfect day.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Almost missed this very interesting stop had it not been for Pat`s keen eye for information boards, especially those with English. These are very old natural stump bee hives. Really neat story as to how a man has kept the generations old apiary going over the years.
Heart 8 Comment 0
Here is a picture of beekeepers working with the bees.
Heart 2 Comment 0
Another amazing road high up on the side of the hill.
Heart 4 Comment 0
View down the valley.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Such a fun road to ride!
Heart 3 Comment 0
Beautiful lush green hills as far as you can see.
Heart 1 Comment 0
Always amazed at the strength, longevity and beauty of these dry stacked rock walls. This almost 3 metre high wall is still perfectly aligned!
Heart 3 Comment 0
Our road slicing across the hillside.
Heart 3 Comment 0
Heart 3 Comment 0
Heart 2 Comment 0
Heart 3 Comment 0
Our coffee stop in Vialas at Chez Teuffy. It was a great place and the weather is perfect to sit outside.
Heart 2 Comment 0

In Chamborigaud we stopped in the local park to enjoy our picnic lunch prepared by Gîte en Cévennes. Leaving the  town our route joined up with the Céze River and we again began a downhill run following the river's twists and turns while admiring the landscapes and local settlements. Pat says that finally we are following a river downstream! The Céze flows into the Rhône, the direction that we are now heading. It is effortless riding in another beautiful area of France.

Downhill run into Chamborigaud. 1200 total vertical metres down today.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Lunch spot in the local park. We had our pick of the benches as there was not another soul around.
Heart 4 Comment 0
It is amazing sometimes to ride around a corner on a small single lane road and come face to face with a massive piece of incredibly complex infrastructure . This is the viaduct Chamborigaud, a railway bridge. The work was completed in 1867 and the viaduct was listed as a historic monument in 1984.
Heart 6 Comment 0
Even the guide gets fooled sometimes.
Heart 7 Comment 0
Pretty town of Chambon on the Céze River.
Heart 3 Comment 0

We have struggled at times with finding overnight stays on this trip. We are finding that there are not a large number of choices on our planned route. We had planned on staying in St. Ambroix but could not find anything that we liked so in the end decided to travel 5 kms further down the road to Saint-Victor-de-Malcap. It is a small town but has a nice hotel, La Bastide Des Senteurs.  As often seems to happen, this town is a much prettier place to stay than the town we had hoped for!

Afternoon celebration beverage on the terrace of La Bastide Des Senteurs. We had dinner here, too.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Church in Saint-Victor-de-Malcap.
Heart 2 Comment 0
There is also a great looking Chateau in the town but unfortunately it is temporarily closed. We could not find a way in to even sneak a good peak at it! Here is one corner of the building.
Heart 3 Comment 0
Evening sky at Saint-Victor-de-Malcap.
Heart 5 Comment 0
Pat`s dinner salad.
Heart 5 Comment 0
Shared dessert. Yes it was yummy.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Heart 1 Comment 0

Today's ride: 64 km (40 miles)
Total: 362 km (225 miles)

Rate this entry's writing Heart 10
Comment on this entry Comment 0