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"I like to walk at my ease, and stop when I like. A wandering life is what I want. To walk through a beautiful country in fine weather, without being obliged to hurry, with a pleasant prospect at the end, is of all kinds of life, the one best suited to my taste.", Rousseau.
- The statistics and metrics of the day
- The most memorable occurrences, moments and thoughts
- Video of Lightfoot Guide Stage 21, from Reims to Verzenay
- Video of Lightfoot Guide Stage 22, from Verzenay to Condé-sur-Marne
- Video of Lightfoot Guide Stage 23, from Condé-sur-Marne to Châlons-en-Champagne.
- Pictures of the day.
This post complements the post I published on the 23rd of August 2016 in which I described the experiences I had on the 4th of August 2016 while riding between Reims and Châlons-en-Champagne in France. I am not going to repeat the content of that post in this one again, but I will try to add a few highlights for each one of the stages below. I encourage you to read the previous post before continuing on this one.
- Date: Thursday, 4th of August 2016
- Route: From Reims to Châlons-en-Champagne, in France
- Distance: 53.87 Km
- Departure time from Tergnier: Around 10:22h.
- Arrival at Reims: Around 16:06h
- Duration of day’s Journey: 5h 44min
- Expenses this day: Total = € 39.00
- Overnight Location: Auberge de Jeunesse, +33 (0) 326264628
- Type of Accommodation: Hostel
- Lightfoot Guide Stages:
- Physical and Body Stats: Link to the Garmin Connect Page for this ride
- Duration: 5h 44min
- Moving time: 3h 17min
- Average Speed: 9.4 Km/h
- Average Moving Speed: 16.4 Km/h
- Max. Speed: 45.9 Km/h
- Total Elevation Gain: 286 m
- Average Heart Rate: 117 bpm
- Max. Heart Rate: 160 bpm
- Calories: 1,721 CAL
- Number of Pedal Strokes (Cadence sensor): 11,482
As I mentioned on the earlier post, I left Reims quite late because I walked to a nearby MacDonalds to have breakfast and to the Tourism Information Office to get my pilgrim’s credential stamped. On the way back I decided to go have a chat with a couple that was sitting with their bikes on a café and, confirming my suspicions they were also Francigena Pilgrims who started in Canterbury and were heading to Rome by bike.
The gentleman’s name was Giovanni. Unfortunately I forgot to write their names down and don’t remember the name of his wife anymore. I believe she was German, but I could be mistaken. They were, at that time, the first cycling pilgrims I had seen on the journey, so I was very happy to meet them, even though I thought it was going to be the last time I see them as they were following a different route. They were riding Mountain Bikes and decided for a rougher track. I was, however, wrong. As I arrived in Châlons-en-Champagne at the end of the day, guess who I met at the Tourism Information Office? Exactly! Small world. We then got our pilgrims’ credentials stamped and the address of the local youth hostel and decided to spend the night there.
The Youth Hostel in Châlons-en-Champagne is very good. Typical hostel with rooms containing several bunk beds, but every thing was clean and tidy. There we meet other pilgrims and travelers, like David from Belgium, who wanted to walk all the way to Santiago de Compostela, and Fabio who was just cycling from Holland, were he lived with family, to his home town of Brindisi in Italy. Fabio had already bought some food on the local market and invited us all for dinner. A delicious pasta, that he cooked in the Youth Hostel’s guest kitchen.
After dinner we all went out for a walk around town and for some beers. It was a great evening in the company of some really nice people.
On the way to Verzenay I rode among the vineyards of champagne produces like Moet et Chandon, one of the most recognisable (and expensive) brands of Champagne. If was like being in the middle of a sea of grapes. I was tempted to eat a few off the trees, but they appeared to be too green. As in Verzenay, everything in Condé-sur-Marne was closed, so I couldn’t find any place to stamp my pilgrim’s credentials.
From Condé-sur-Marne to Châlons-en-Champagne was entirely done on canal towpaths as my bike was also heavy in the front (I had 2x 10 Kg panniers in the front) it wasn’t easy to steer quickly at times and the grooves were wet and narrow and had quite a bit of mud in them. The townpath eventually became a concrete paved cycle lane and I felt like I was riding on a “Cycling Autobahn”. It was one of the best cycle lanes I rode in life, completely smooth.
Although I covered less than 54 Km this day and despite the rain I had a great time cycling this track and would recommend it to everyone, pilgrim or not.
Please take a look at my picture album (down below) for this day in Flickr.
Video Length: 4 min and 19 sec
Video Length: 4 min 36 sec
Video Length: 5 min 10 sec
Click on any picture for full detail
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