Le Grand Tour: Day 50 – Sierre To Ritzingen (74km)

CURRENT LOCATION: Camping Brigga, Ritzingen

I’m running out of energy today. Not me personally but my electrical gear. In sorting out my gear last week at the €35 campsite when the heavens opened and the tent ended up hosting the 2022 Lac Léman swimming championships at the end where my feet are currently positioned, my battery pack stopped working and I inadvertently left the two cables I need to attach my phone to the front wheel dynamo hub somewhere. Although I replaced the battery pack in Aigle, I won’t be able to replace the cables. Added to this, my WarmShowers host Jean-Daniel has some very curious Swiss sockets in his house and I wasn’t able to charge anything overnight. I have 30% of charge left on this phone and my battery pack is currently being charged in the reception. That should see me through tomorrow to Andermatt. I have made today’s video but a combination of this lack of power and the Swiss love of 3G as opposed to 4G you are going to have to wait to see it until at least Monday. 

To the cycling… I’m now at 1,315m. That’s only 30m short of Ben Nevis. The Fuurka Pass – tomorrow’s highest point – is 2,429m so the hard work is far from over but having climbed 916m today, I’ve made a good start. Jean-Daniel and his family were very welcoming last night. It was a raclette celebration of his father, André’s, 87th birthday. Having commented yesterday that I have never tasted Swiss wine, by the end of last night’s festivities I’d tasted five of them. 

This morning, Jean-Daniel gave me a few pieces of advice relating to the route, chief of which was that I should try to avoid the cycle route between Mörel and Niederwald. This I did although only as far as Lax where I could see a road that would link me back to the cycle path after the problematic section. (Problematic because of the rough nature of the track and also in that it adds a significant amount of climbing to to the cycle.)

I’m struggling to stay awake so, here are some bullet points:

  • Bamboo bicycle in Sierre
  • The trains, including the Glacier Express
  • The warning signs both about the road and the cycle path; the recommended
  • Recommendation is to… take the train!
  • The chalets, old and new
  • Emen – beautiful little village somewhat scarred by all the stuff required for the outdoor theatre event
  • Chatting with a Dutch cyclist
  • Camping in the cool mountain; no sweat!
  • it’s been day 50 today…
  • …and I return to Andermatt tomorrow!


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