One of the chase groups coming down the descent.

Today’s stage of the TdF had a Hors Category climb about 20km from the finish. Because of that I thought that not much would change in the standings because any time gained at the top of the climb the riders behind could likely make that up taking massive risks on the descent. So I drove out of my hotel at 7:30am and headed straight for the finishing village, Bagneres-de-Luchon.

I was early enough that the roads weren’t closed yet so I drove back along the route towards the base of the other side of the climb. The climb itself was closed, and it would be a 6km walk to the top and then plus some to find a good spot on the other side that wasn’t completely over crowded. It was a scorching day so instead I turned around, drove a few km back and parked my car. I’ve never watched one of the descents, mainly because the riders go so fast its all over too quickly and the photos are more challenging. But it had its advantages. I had the comfort of my car all day, there was only one other caravan next to me so it was nice and quiet, and after the stage I got down off the mountain very fast and didn’t get held up in traffic.

As you can tell the photos are a bit hit and miss. Not having done a descent before I wasn’t quite sure what to try and shoot, and its like a wedding, it only happens once. The wide angle stuff didn’t turn out as I had hoped, but the longer zoomed in stuff came out really nice I think. Just wish I was doing that the entire timeā€¦

So yea thats two stages down, another two to go. Tomorrow is a huge stage, four massive climbs. Im heading to the Col d’Aubisque, a climb I went to at the 2007 TdF, and I remember walking a LONG way.