Whilst France is great, I’m not having much luck getting decent Wifi, so am a bit behind with my blog posts…I know…shocker…at least I’m not as behind as I was on my Bike around Britain tour, and will hopefully catch up with some ‘brief’ posts tonight. Here’s one about my rest day in Grez-sur-Loing, a lovely place for a stop.
I still cycled about 20 km, pedalling a very pleasant circuit to a nearby climbing area, and then back to Grez. Here’s the route I took:
So what to do with a day off? It’s been a while since I had one and I’d got to the point where I felt like I needed some time to relax, to recharge mentally if not physically. Ian, a friend who joined me for a few days on my Bike around Britain tour, had recommended this place and it was certainly a chilled out venue for some downtime. There are however always chores to do, so I started the day with some washing, then had a snooze whilst reading Alice in Wonderland, which could have led to some weird dreams, then hung my washing up and thought I’d better do something. Ian had suggested a climbing area called ‘Elephant’, that isn’t to far from Grez, down near Larchant, and offers lots of bouldering opportunities; this was convenient since I ‘stupidly’ hadn’t thought to lug all my heavy climbing gear with from the UK.
So Lobster and I headed off in search of Elephants. We found some gorgeous forest first, very tranquil.
Pushing on a bit further we discovered the famed ‘Elephant’ bouldering area, and I spent a couple of hours trying to remember how to climb, without hurting myself. Several years ago, and the last time I did any serious climbing, I fell off from about 2 foot up, breaking my elbow and dislocating my kneecap; apparently I turned an interesting shade of green. I’m all mended now, however I my elbow can tell when a storm is brewing – it aches.
Having looked around a bit, we found the Elephant itself.
And lots of Lizards.
I climbed up a rock and sat in the sunshine for a bit; relaxing in a forest is a good way to spend a day off, and very therapeutic.
Post elephant I cycled back to Grez-sur-Loing, via Larchant, with slightly aching arms. I was however quite pleased that my wonky hand hadn’t impeded any climbing activity; still a bit wonky due to all this cycling though.
Back at the campsite I did some bike maintenance, which mainly involved tweaking my gears; front shifter needed realigning slightly after chain and rear cassette change. As the evening progressed and I caught up on blogging and route planning, more and more people arrived for the weekend; mostly climbers by the looks of it. I spoke to a few who come here fairly regularly, just because the area is so good for climbing and getting away from it all, and it’s not far from Paris, with a great little campsite that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.
All ready to get back on the road down to the Loire region, I hit the sack, after evicting quite a lot of ants from my tent again; varmint holes providing entry points, which I must gaffer tape up again.