Longpre-corps-les-Saints to La Neuville Garnier

Today was one of those days that really makes you question why the hell you do this and will go down as one of the toughest days I have had on a bike. The route was entirely North to South and the wind, which was blowing at a fair old rate, was entirely South to North.

Grin and bear it!

We were not helped by the fact that the majority of the day was to be spent on small hilltop farmland roads with little or no cover.

I imagine that later in the year with the sun on your back these roads would be an absolute joy to cycle. However, if you are planning to follow this route, you might want to check the prevailing wind pattern first.

The first 25KM took over two hours and were absolutely exhausting! I found myself wishing for some hills to climb as they might afford some shelter from the wind, as it turned out there were plenty of them and they didn't! Even the resulting downhills were hard work.

There is not much I can say about most of the route, except it was a real 'grit your teeth and keep the pedals turning' sort of day.

By the time we got to the city of Beauvais and the first real photo stop of the day at the cathedral, we were running seriously late and the main question was just how far short of our intended stopping point we should call it quits? At 80KM, getting to Beauvais itself felt like an Achievement, but we were still 20KM short of where we wanted to be and didn't feel like stopping.

The route out of Beauvais looked like a steep climb and, as I have a dislike of taking on hills at the start of the day, we decided to keep going for a while, and start the next day on higher ground. This proved to be a good decision, because the wind subsided for a while (to make way for some serious rainfall, but I'll take rain over wind every time) and we started to catch up a little.

Eventually we reached a crossroads with 'La Neuville Garnier' posted as the next village on our route at the top of what looked like an extremely steep hill. As seems to be the way with a lot of the hills in France, it looked much worse than it actually was and proved to be a long fairly gentle climb.

We made the decision to stop at the top of the hill, only 8KM short of our intended destination.

A good thing about stopping where we did was that it allowed us to feel the day had gone okay in the end. Ending the day feeling positive makes starting the next day much easier.

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Day:3 of 4
Date:06 April 2005
To:La Neuville Garnier
Distance:93 KM
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