Tuesday July 5, 2005, 115 km (71 miles) – Total so far: 5,432 km (3,375 miles)
We packed up a wet tent and headed through Briançon (up a very steep hill) to the old town, we picked up a few retro cycling postcards and continued on to the Col de l’Echelle (1762) towards Italy. The ride over the Col was one of the most scenic we’ve done; both sides were beautiful. I’m glad we climbed the French side as the road up from Italy was very steep and the road surface was appalling.
We enjoyed superb scenery and it was mostly downhill (with a tail wind) past Susa to our campsite between the two lakes at Avigliana (near Turin). The setting for the site is lovely, but the facilities are not up to much; cold water in the showers that share a cubicle with nasty hole-in-the-ground toilets. I tried to charge my mobile but was a little over-optimistic in assuming that there would be any electricity in the power points.
Italy is the eighth country we’ve visited on this tour (if Lichtenstein is included) and apart from a brief foray back into Switzerland later this week, it will be our home for over a month. I hope the campsites improve.