Another day... another gorge. But this is the Big One, the deepest canyon in Europe, the Grand Canyon of the Verdon. Spectacular rock topography on view and very much in your face through a bike visor but for most of us our riding the canyon North Rim road is moderated by the up to 700m drop to the river below, even on a midweek out-of-season day like this when the North Rim road is blocked half-way to Castellane so the traffic is wonderfully light. Views of the snow on the peaks of some Provence Alps from the Col d'Ayen (1031 m.).
Riding in my white kit so happy to find a quarry for a “Moonwalker look” pose.
The best rides are the roads leading to the canyon, up from Vinon-sur-Verdon where the Verdon meets the river Durance. Then the road up the valley of the quaintly-named river Colostre and some lakeside roads around the Lac de Saint-Croix. Pine forests concealing tricky curves and stacks of hairpins. The South Rim road is known for spectacular rolling curves and hills which give plenty of scope for sporty riding.
Today the canyon was in sultry mood aiming to frustrate the photographer. I had arrived too late to enjoy its early morning show of coloured limestone, having enjoyed the spring sunshine at Peyrolles-en-Provence while Lionél did the service on my bike. Never mind, I’ll be back.