Gravel and descending

3 Jul

The Telegraph was lush today, a classic James Joyce ‘verdant’. The Irish members of the group might appreciate the literary reference! We parked at the top and unloaded and pumped, stretched and smiled. First you go down then you go up. The sound of the ‘humming bee’ as the Chris King wheels spun their perfect mechanical rhythm on the tarmac. Crouching over the bars the bends and trees and the road edge disappeared for a couple of kilometres. But the cloud had not cleared and it created a fog of limited visibility. Limited visibility and freshly laid gravel- curious a few days before the Marmotte. Gravel and fog changed the noise of the bike and suddenly there was very little grip either. Concentrating a bit harder it was another reason to get familiar with the inflection of the PROMPT. With everything whirring nicely we descended into saint michel de maurienne and turned around to climb the Telegraphe. When you know that the Galibier is coming up next it can be easy to ignore the Telegraphe. It is not as exposed or as steep as other climbs but it is the Telegraphe- a place of legend and pain, success and glory. Today it settled our nerves and the group ascended steadily carrying the quiet excitement of anticipation for the Galibier to come.

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