From the Mediterranean Sea to Rocalet

We spent the night on the beach close to Frontignan. Unfortunately, the summer ended just that day, and we followed the sea on a cycle path the next day under gray clouds and fog. In some places, the bike path was interrupted and we had to cross a town on huge roads, completely full and blocked of cars. It is not explainable why anyone would go by car in those cities.

Leaving the sea again, we followed the valley of the river Orb into the mountains once again. After some beautiful views, we found a place to have a rest day on a river beach in Vieussan. We spent that day mostly relaxing, but had a circle and a discussion about oppressive behaviour in the afternoon, and tried to make some human towers, Catalan style.

We then reached the Passa Païs cycle path, built on an old railway and crossing the mountains without much incline. As usual in the disgusting car culture, we found our way onto the bikepath through one of the many parking lots along the path that is meant for those who want to use it (and drive their bike there by car!). The bike path is not paved, but made of sand, which was quite acceptable in most places, but of beach quality in some places. In some places, the path was interrupted (surprise!) because of private property or because building a road had higher priority there, and then it went on some really really horrible really steep rough concrete or gravel detour for a while. In one of those places, the downhill was so steep and made of gravel that one cyclist fell from the bike and got a lot of scratches all over his body. In some places, every couple of hundred meters, the road was blocked by a big wooden barrier that was only passable by bikes without trailers (because in the minds of the car-driving bike path planners, you drive by car to the bike path, then cycle back and forth without luggage, and then drive back home). Fortunately, it was possible to open them and we liberated the whole bike path. Apart from all these minor annoyances, the bike path was quite amazing, in some places going over big bridges or gaps in the mountains, going continuously up with an almost unfeelable incline of probably around 0.5 % up to 400 metres, then crossing the big mountain in a really really long tunnel, and then going continuously down with an almost unfeelable decline again, which felt a bit like riding an e-bike.

In the night it felt like the world was ending. We called an ambulance to have a look at the wounds of the fallen cyclist, and while they blinked blue at our camp-site in the night, a huge thunderstorm came up right above us, and we tried to cook under heavy rains with explosions happening right above us. And suddenly we had adopted a huge Bernadine dog that had been found by some kids on the street and one of us promised to bring him to the mairie the next morning.

The next day we were woken up by the police, who didn’t like that we were camping right in the centre of the village in front of a commercial camp site. But they didn’t do anything, and so we could leave for our last and hilly cycling day before the next project, Le Rocalet.

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