Wednesday 31 August 2016

Monday: The rain in Spain (well France)

Breakfast in Hotel Food Rios was acceptable but average. We had been spoilt for the previous 2 nights. One of the reasons for choosing to stay in Ainsa was to cycle upto the Lac De Cap Long about an hour's drive away on the French side of the boarder. I had planned to do the climb on our last trip to the Pyrenees 2 years ago and we were thwarted by the weather. This year turned out to be the same with a high probability of heavy rain all afternoon we changed our plans and decided to do a ride front Ainsa instead where it was not due to start raining according to the forecast until 2:00pm. 1 euro was invested in a VTT cycle guide from the tourist information and having applied sunscreen we checked out of the hotel just after 11:00 am to set off cycling in light rain. The rain stopped a few minutes later and stayed away until until our drive to Genos.

It was like a treasure hunt spotting the route marking but we made it out of town on a minor road and after a couple of miles turned off onto a dry river bed. We cycled for a few hundred yards but really needed mountain bikes to make any serious progress.

We retraced out steps and followed the road instead and slowly climbed above the valley. We followed a couple of signpost places but these turned out to farms a dead ends. A few mountain bike paths were signed off the route but were not included in the guide I purchased.

Having run out of road we returned to town to try another route. This time we were more successful with the off road sections not requiring a mountain bike to cycle.

The route was meant to be suitable for families but after a section following the river and then looping back to town but were soon steeply climbing upto a couple of small villages and then descending on a gravel track past a small quarry.

Ainsa Old town.

We arrived back at the car just after 4:00pm. Robert sorted out the bikes whilst Lyn ordered a late lunch from the hotel. It turned out the kitchen was closed but the waiter offered to make us a sandwich.
I was a 1:40 minute drive to Genos. We had some heavy rain as we approached the Bielsa tunnel and we emerged the other side into low cloud. We arrived at Genos at 6:30pm, 30 minutes ahead of our estimated latest arrival time. It turn out that the GPS coordinates and map of how to get the the accommodation were wrong. Finding the right house was not helped by the fact that none of the roads in the small village had any Street names displayed and the 2 locals we asked did not know where it was. Kate and Google maps only displayedWe the names of the main rosds.We eventually drove past the right house having checked the pictures on the website. We were meant by the owners uncle who lives next door. The accommodation is splendid had has been renovated to a high standard. We have full cooking facilities and also a dishwasher and washing machine. Our bikes are safely stored in the uncles adjoining "garage". We eat in the apartment and the Supermarket Rioja was better than some we had sampled.

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