Burgundy to Budapest. Day 3. Chalon s/ saone to Bensacon

Today has started well, excluding the rain and headwind! But actually it has. Had a decent nights sleep, got up and packed before the rain came (so everything is dry) then headed off out of Chalon.

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I’ve been thinking about what I am actually doing (I do that a lot at the moment), but in particular on this trip. Is it a cycling challenge, is it a holiday? For instance Chalon looked lovely with lots to see and do as I cycled through it yesterday – but was so tired and keen for a good night’s sleep I didn’t see any of it. I had no choice given today is 100 miles and Thursday and Friday I’ll be torturing myself in the mountains. I’m not really bothered either way and I suppose it is both – but am thinking it would be great to come back one day and spend some real time in these places.

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Today is a transition day, a day of long cycling, paying little regard for where I am, rather paying full attention to turning the pedals and getting to my destination, Besancon. The reward, a lovely hotel!! Just hope I make good time and get to see a bit of the town too as tomorrow’s cycling is a bit easier. Right now it’s 09:00 and I’ve already made 20 miles. Stopping for my obligatory cafe having already had a quiche and a Suisse pastry. So far so good.

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Made it to Besancon in decent time – though was a very tough day – no legs at all. Also messed up by not eating lunch. I say messed up, but it turns out the French don’t particularly like working on a Monday. I rocked up to a place in Roquefort at 13:00 – they said they had already finished the Menu de jour serving – which started at 11:30!! So I had to push through with a mars bar, can of coke and my emergency biscuits!

Again, I zoomed through a place (Dole), that looked amazing – shame I didn’t have time to stop and look around.

Some photos below.

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The landscape is changing as you can see. No longer am I cycling alongside what is effectively a semi mature rivers floodplain or the canal that always runs alongside. Instead I am cycling alongside the river (Doubs) as it cuts its way through harder, more akin to mountainous, rock. Makes for amazing scenery, and Besancon is built on this as the river meanders through. To go with the change in physical geography there has been a change in political geography too – no longer in Burgundy – now in Franche-Comte.

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