Since the forecast called for rain for tomorrow, I decided to go out somewhere, anywhere.
It’s still sunny and 20 degrees, so I should make the most of it.
Went up north, a small loop via Lastours, Pradelles-Cabardes and Cabrespine. Pretty short, but this is only an afternoon jaunt, and it’s 2pm already.
No names on the map, the left spot is Lastours, the one on top is Pradelles-Cabardes and the one on the right is Cabrespine.
Let’s take off. I’ve already done 140km since I last filled up. I rode easy (back from Toulouse on a new tire), the fuel light will probably come on around 170km. Don’t want to make a detour for gas straight away. “meh, surely I’ll find gas in the next 30km!”.
Famous last words.
As I’m leaving some roadworks make me miss a power center of sorts where I knew there was gas. No biggie. I’ll fill up later.
Next village, “this must be big enough for gas”. Nope.
I’m now in the mountains, Lastours. “This is touristy, there ought to be gas here”. Nope.
I keep pushing on … but this is not good. Villages keep getting smaller, and if the gas light comes on now, I won’t have enough to go back. Dammit.
In addition, the road sucks, very bumpy.
Fuck it, turn around! The road isn’t fun enough to keep on going, and I’m not sure where I’ll find a gas station.
A bit later the gas light does come on, as predicted at the 170km mark. Shortly after, I go by a sign saying Carcassonne – 11km. Good thing I turned around.
So no, I did not run out of gas, managed to fill up and all. But this is the first time I actually had to turn around due to lack of gas stations. I didn’t like it.
Anyways. The road to Lastours sucked, I’m going up the other way, towards Cabrespine.
And thankfully, it’s much better. Not as perfect as the picture makes it appear, but pleasant. And it’s pretty.
As I’m stopped and taking pictures, I hear noise in the woods. Canadian habits kicking in “oh crap! Bear! To the bike! No! Act dead! No! Run downhill! … wait a second.” Turns out it was a family walking in the woods picking up these. They’re delicious.
I keep on going. Much further, a sign. Pic de Nore. Oh, I’ve heard of that. As you may or may not have noticed, I have a tendency to look for altitude. That thing sounds like it’s high up.
The road is rough, it’s moderately fun. It’s getting cooler, as well. And once up top at 1211m, it’s 9 degrees and windy as fuck. Still comfy with all the gear and sun.
I take a picture of the giant pen… antenna.
And what a view. All the way at the end, sort of in the sky, those are the Pyrenees you can see.
I took this picture to illustrate how windy it was. I failed. But it was very windy.
It is autumn indeed.
The village of Pradelles-Cabardès. Had I not turned around in the beginning, this is where I was hoping to find gas. LOL!
End of the mountains.
Little pause by the Canal du Midi. I was hoping to see some boats go up or down the locks, but no such luck.
Nice pictures, I really like your bike !!! Got a few questions for you : whats the best way to tour europe on a sport touring bike for just a couple of weeks?? Renting or shipping (Im from Montreal)? Do you have any idea of what the prices could be? Also how much is the gasoline in france? Thanks a lot and keep on the good work!