Our River is ChangingSeptember 26, 2019 in France ⋅ ☁️ 18 °C
One of the fascinating aspects of completing an extended cycling trip along a river, is watching the way the river evolves as you follow it towards its inevitable exit into the ocean. When we began our ride along the Loire at Nevers, the river was small and interrupted by numerous rapids.
Over the past three weeks we have not only watched the river grow in size, but also been able to see the dramatic changes in the geography and architecture of the places we rode through. We will never forget the succession of magnificent chateaux between Orleans and Tours, but that is not where the story ends.
This morning we made our way out of the bustling centre of Angers and were relieved when we finally resumed cycling along the quiet riverside bike paths once again. Although the weather has been cool and overcast, it never actually started to rain. For most of the day I was able to ride in shortsleeves.
We had been expecting a gentle ride of about 40 km, without any hills. The 40 km was about right, but the absence of hills was a myth. I can assure you that there are hills between Angers and Montjean Sur Loire and we rode up every one of them.
The final few km were along La Queue de L'Ile, a large island in the middle of the Loire River. The group rode along at a good pace, meaning that we arrived at the hotel in Montjean Sur Loire earlier than expected. I guess that is a result of the increased fitness earned after 4 weeks of almost daily cycling.
Montjean is a tiny hamlet situated on the banks of the Loire. It was a huge contrast to the hussle and bussle of Angers, although it was also quite sad to see how low the Loire was at this point. When we were last here, the Loire was a majestic sight with its waters extending from bank to bank. This year the river is reduced to maybe a third of its normal flow. It is no wonder that the boats are finding it very difficult to navigate the greatly reduced waters.
One thing is certain - no one will be kept awake by crowd noise tonight.Read more