Today was a “rest Day” for most, but Thorr, Helmut, and Scott decided that a day without cycling would not do. They had mountains in every direction we looked to ride up. The other riders spent the day roaming the city which is a Shopping Mecca for many French and Spanish people, since this Principality has no taxes. The diesel fuel for the car was 15 euro cents per liter than in Spain, so it was fill up time! We had a DELICIOUS dinner at Don Denis with champagne on the house!
Today we traveled in the foothills of the Pyrenees. The hills got a bit longer and steeper during our 75 mile ride with over 8000 ft. of climbing. As we entered the city we got greeted by a big storm that drenched the area. It was a challenge to walk down the steep cobbled streets on our cleats as it was to slippery to ride.
Great day of cycling today! It was bright and sunny, getting very hot in the afternoon,and we culminated the day with 92 miles ridden and 7300 feet of climbing.En route we had a brief stop at the Abbey of Montserrat. Everyone was happy to arrive at Mas de la Sala, where we enjoyed a variety of Catalonian food and drinks in beautiful Spanish surroundings.
After a delay at Newark airport, we finally took off but arrived one hour later than expected at Barcelona. And things got worse. After we got off the plane we spent close to three hours in line to get our passports checked. But with the help of the hotel shuttle service we finally made it to our destination. we assembled all the bicycles and went for a warmup ride to the Olympic stadium at Montjuich mountain. The views from the top were spectacular.
A little shopping is always a must, but that was left behind as we headed to our winery visit in Cadillac. En route we had a photo opportunity at the ruins of Montarouch. The quaint little town of Targon was our lunch stop and we all enjoyed our break for a variety of pizza. Then wine tasting at Chateau Fayau finished everyone’s day with that warm happy feeling! Kind of a good thing that our hotel was only about a mile from the winery!
The first noticeable change for the day is that we are riding thru the vineyards. Everyone was excited about our first winery visit to le chateau Lilian Ladouys Filled with knowledge about growing grapes and making wine we headed for our gourmet picnic at a grocery store parking lot.This gave a new meaning to a takeout meal. Then we went on to the ferry which took us across the Gironde to Blaye. On both sides of the river we learned about the protection of Bordeaux in the 17th. century against foreign invaders. A walk around the walled fortress gave us an idea of the engineering skills during that time.