Charmant Som and Col de Porte

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Bike route 874637 – powered by Bikemap 

My first time cycling in the Chartreuse region of the Alps (surrounding Grenoble).

Grenoble may be at the bottom of more major climbs than any other city.  Today’s route passed 4 mountain cols and THEN the hard part

started. 

The first 10 Kilometres were pretty hard along beautiful quiet roads.  I passed 4 riders at the Col de Clemenciere which helped my spirits.  At the Col de Vence I rejoined a slightly busier road – I later learned there was a quieter option … but no big deal. 

 

It was super hot and I was out of drinks so I bought two Iced Teas at a little restaurant, caught my breath and kept going.  At the Col de Palaquit I knew I was close.

 Col de Palaquit

My Goal for the day was the Col de Porte but I felt OK and knew there was a little road at the top that went even higher for 6 kilometres to the Chalet of Charmant Som. 

 

Col de Porte

 

This route was absoultely beautiful but was super steep for 3 or so kilometres.  At one point I stopped for a drink and had trouble restarting (ok I was pretty tired too!).  I passed a guy and his wife and said "courage" (standard french biking encouragment) and the woman answered in English with a high pitched "Help."

Charmant Som  

Up top was beautiful and full of hikers.  A big day – starting at 200 metres and ending at 1,700 metres with a little bit of downhill.  Happy but Knackered?

Charmant Som 
 

 CHALLENGE UPDATE: My 8th +1,000 Metre climb of 2006

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Happiest while cycling uphill. More enthusiastic than talented, my 2014 Challenge is to cycle 50 great rides, slowly.

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