Richard Foster is cycling from Chorleywood to the South of France for charity, eta 6 June. Wife Kathy is following by car and aiming at doing a painting a day. And Richard became a news story in Dardilly More details here…
Birthday Celebrations! Being 60 isn’t so bad, especially when you have some lovely people to celebrate with! Danced the night away in the beach bar, but no pics of that, too embarrassing for the boys!!!
Day 22 Mon 8 June
Brissac – Portiragnes Plage (62 miles); Hills to the beach. Steep hill out of our campsite then followed the Herault river to the sea. Hot day 36C so thirsty work but fantastic reception courtesy of Kathy, Susie & Kevin followed by several beers at the beach bar. Final total: 840 miles door to Mediterrean.
Note from Kathy:
The hottest day so far, and the longest journey! He arrived more or less on time though, desperate for cool swim and beer. And the sea was just about cool enough!! Beers fine! Huge achievement, we lined his final route as best we could and it is a great relief to have completed this epic journey. It may sink in over the next few days, and in this heat it’s great to be able to relax with Susie and Kevin and enjoy the sun. My lovely sister and her wonderful husband have been incredibly supportive, it really has been fantastic to have them on this final leg.
Day 20 Sat 6 June
Cendras – Brissac (39 miles) – La Canicule est arrivee! Tres chaud 34C. Started early to avoid most of the heat & luckily fairly level. In the Cevennes by Grotte de Demoiselles and next to Herault river. Last day tomorrow down the Herault.
Day 19 Fri 5 June
St Martin d’Ardeche – Cendras (40 miles) Long hill climb out of St Martin but beautiful views at top with acres of lavender. Mon belle soeur (Susie) et beau frere (Kevin) awaiting at campsite – with us for final 2 days.
Day 18 Thursday 4 Jun
St Laurent du Pape – St Martin D’Ardeche (47 miles); Power stations, cement works and rocky outcrops along the Rhone. Very hot but another swimming pool to cool off on arrival. Into the hills tomorrow.
Day 17 Wednesday 3 June
Felines – St Laurent du Pape (45 miles); Monday’s storm & deluge affected the car’s electrics so stayed another night at Felines to sort! Still heading south along the Rhone & its getting hot, 32 today & forecasting 36 at the weekend. Ardeche is beautiful with fruit orchards galore – scrumped some cherries on route! Photos from Monday & today I hope.
Day 15 Monday 1 June
Dardilly – Felines (47 miles); Left our lovely host family in Dardilly this morning. Now heading south along the Rhone. Escorted through the suburbs of Lyon by the Michel the president of the Dardilly cycling club and then along a cycle piste by the Rhone before a steep hill climb to our campsite in Felines. Very warm until just now – sitting in tent as a dramatic thunderstorm surrounds us.
Day 14 Sunday 31 May
So, another beautiful day here in Dardilly with lovely family who are part of Chorleywood/Dardilly town twinning scheme.
“We have been staying with Catherine, Jean and daughter Lea.” says Kathy, “They were so welcoming and gave us a great tour of Lyon. The weather was warm and sunny and we ended up drinking lovely cold beer in the garden overlooking Lyon!”
Day 13 Saturday 30 May
Arrived in Dardilly after a long hill climb to 700 metres with cycling escort from local community. Lunch in the garden with the Dardilly twinning association & the local press!
Day 12 Friday 29 May
Digoin – Cublize (54 miles); Toughest day so far. Spent over 3 hours hill climbing this afternoon so pretty tired now. However countryside lovely and camping near lake amongst the hills. To our twin town Dardilly tomorrow.
” Richard was particualrly shattered today with some fierce hills to climb!” adds Kathy
Day 10 Wednesday 27 May
Pouilly-Decize (52 miles) Beaucoup des Cyclistes; Met an english couple last night cycling on a tandem with all their gear from Andover to Montpellier (coincidence!). Also had company on my leg today with a dutch 64 year old man cycling from Eindhoven via Santiago to Lisbon and carrying all his gear too. Going up stream so technically uphill but still flat. Weather warmer & now on a pitch right next to the river
Day 9 Tuesday 26 May
Rest day to day, so chance to have a walk around & relax. Kathy has another painting in the bag. Peaceful campsite right next to Loire (see photo) & a walk to Pouilly. Trying the Sancerre tonight. Looking with respect at many other cyclists who are carrying all their gear on the bike!
Day 8 Monday 25 May
Nouan-Le-Fuzillier to Pouilly s Loire (54 miles)
Now in wine country & have a bottle of Pouilly Fume to look forward to. Some great views on the approach to Sancerre. Thought I saw my neighbour Huw at Aubigny (main photo) – seems like there is a historical association with Mary Stuart. probably staying 2 nights before moving on. Staying right beside the Loire, just enjoying a beer in the campsite bar, seems like half the town is here too, with the usual lively game of boules going on!Day 6 – Saturday 23 May
16.14 Senonches to Chateaudun (47 miles); Lots of flat, empty roads through crop fields (see photos for guessing the crop ). Also lots of old water pumps. Now camping by River Loir by Chateadun in idyllic setting by waterfall and chateau..
Kathy working on her daily picture – lots of moans!
09.05 Just about to leave the beautiful campsite located in a wooded area around a lake in Senonches. Luxury camping this time in one of their ‘tents’! Have passed through so many lovely old villages, where life seems to have stood still for about 50 years! On to Chateaudun, we have to set up tent ourselves again there!.
Day 5 – Friday 22 May
Now in most beautiful campsite at Senonche staying in middle of forest. Enjoying beer & pizza by lake as sun sets (see photo) 26 miles today. Used 1 contingency day due to replacement of support car – technical problem & a long story! But all well & back on road with a hire car.
Day 4 – Thursday 21 May
Comfortable if not a bit fresh under canvas. Sunny day. Staying in L’Aigle overnight.
Day 3 – Wednesday 20 May
Great crossing with Brittany Ferries to Caen. 48 miles today. Kathy has finished two paintings. Wet start but improved as day went on. In campsite at Vimoutiers in sunshine. Just about to break open a bottle of local cider & some camembert.
Day 2 – Tuesday 19 May
65 miles today inc. 10 miles looking for Kathy in Portsmouth.
Day 1 – Monday 18 May
Lovely send off courtesy of 3 Sons Grocers of Chorleywood and attended by family & friends. Battled through heavy rain & wind this morning. Staying overnight with Susie & Kevin (my sister & brother in law) in Reading.
Kathy has just finished her first painting* (above – the Thames at Cookham Moor). So 34 miles done today – off to Portsmouth tomorrow.
(* Correction Richard! , Kathy’s first painting was of your starting place – Chorleywood Common! as shown below, © Kathy Foster)
Chorleywood Common, © Kathy Foster