Nus: Down we go - Riding the Via Francigina - CycleBlaze

September 10, 2009

Nus: Down we go

It was a warm night in the very well insulated building and we were down for a breakfast of coffee, bread and jam at 8.00am. We said goodbye to the Swiss and carted the gear down to the cellar and got the dopey monk to open the door so we could get the bikes out. Off we went on a cold clear morning. I had been a bit worried about our brakes. They were no problem at all, the problem was the cold. We stopped now and again to let Tricia catch up and to admire the magnificent scenery. Cows were here and there and after an hour or so we crossed under the tunnel traffic. Came to Bourg St Remy which looked like the coldest village we had ever seen - we certainly weren't tempted to stop. On and on we sped until eventually we were on a wider road in the sun but still not much traffic. Came to a Bar where we had a a wonderful hot capaccino only 3E. Then on and down, now we saw the first vineyards and pasture and eventually got to Aosta.

With a bit of luck we found the centre. It was now fairly warm and we were able to take off our jackets. There was a lovely square with a largely rebuilt Cathedral. It was 11.30 and we had been going downhill all morning.

Found the rather busy road out and then to McDonalds where we had a massive meal and nervously watched the busy road. Back on the road we turned towards the hills and soon were on quieter roads - the trade off was that they were steep while the two main roads went along the valley bottom.

There were very nice houses and gardens , tiny paddocks - some haymaking and grapes that were nearly ripe. There was lots of hard pushing up hills and brief runs down. Finally we got to Nus and Tricia found the centre and the Hotel Florian (45E) It was a very nice room there certainly seems to be a major price drop, Assembled a meal and had a very good bottle of Montipulciano.

Ready to start
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Signs of habitation appear
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The first grapes
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The streets of Aosta
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Aosta Cathedral
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Today's ride: 50 km (31 miles)
Total: 1,290 km (801 miles)

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