Cycling Trans Pyrenees: The Adventure Begins

By September 1, 2016 May 4th, 2019 2 Comments

The first Eat Sleep Cycle tour (Trans Pyrenees) rolled out of Girona heading towards the Pyrenees and the Atlantic coast. One word- Epic. The 6 riders were: Peter Gaskill, Benny Cassidy, David Conroy, David, Corinne & Tristan Cardew. The guides were: Lee, Lou & Brian. The adventure was unforgettable.

Trans Pyrenees: Day 1

And we’re off! Eat Sleep Cycle’s first bike adventure took to the road today. Six intrepid riders set off in style from La Fabrica in Girona, to cover 650km to Biarritz over 6 days. The catch? The route will take them straight over the Pyrenees, taking in classic climbs such as the Tourmalet, Peyresourde & the Aubisque.

Every day the cycling-photographer-aussie legend that is Tristan Cardew will capture the journey on camera. Here’s his take on Stage 1.

Ride stats

  • 85km
  • 1,600 meters

Stage 2: Ripoll to Sort

Just wow. We’re in Sort after a mega ride from Ripoll. The day started with an epic climb up to the Collada de Toses, and finished with an epic descent  from the Port del Cantó to a riverside camping ground.

Here’s Tristan’s 1 min glimpse of the glory:

Ride Stats:

  • Ripoll – Alp – Sort
  • 157 km
  • 3,160 m climbing
  • 2 x mountain passes

Stage 3: Sort to Luchon

With (ever so slightly) weary legs our intrepid six have made it to the pretty little town of Bagnéres-de-Luchon (yes, the place where Froomey won his stage of Le Tour this year). Whilst some opted to eat ice-cream and recover from the days exertions up the Port de la Bonaigua and the Col du Portillon, others took themselves up the Superbagnéres, including our camera man Tristan:

Ride stats:

  • 105 km (or 145 km with the Superbagnéres!)
  • 2,275 m (or 3,475 m for the nutters)
  • 2 (or 3!) mountain passes

Stage 4: The Queen Stage

A truly epic day in the saddle with ascents of the Col du Peyrsourde, Col de Val Louron Azet, Col de Aspin & the mighty Col du Tourmalet. It’s no surprise that the biggest days in the saddle offer the biggest rewards. Tristan captures 1 min of a 7 hour day:

Ride stats:

  • Bagnerés-du-Luchon – Arrens-Marsous
  • 146 km
  • 4, 300 m
  • 4 x mountain passes

Stage 5: Into Pais Vasco

Today began with a nasty sore-leg-wake-up-call courtesy of the beautiful Col d’Aubisque. The route took us up to 1,700 m before dropping down a stunning descent. Rolling country lanes for the rest of the ride made a refreshing change from all the mountains. Cold beers & an al fresco pasta feast in Arette was the riders’ reward.

Ride stats

  • 94 km
  • 2,400 m climbing
  • 1 x mountain col

Stage 6: The Atlantic Coast

An emotional day spinning through the Basque country, finishing with a champagne arrival and dip in the sea at Biarritz. It’s been epic. It’s been mega. Here’s Tristan’s last video from the trip  – thank you all!!

Ride stats

  • 116 km
  • 1,500 m of climbing
  • 1 x dip in the sea

Girona-Biarritz, a summary:

  • 6 riders
  • 6 day’s
  • 650 km
  • 16,000 m climbing
  • 11 x mountain cols (we should make that 16!?)
  • 1 x very tired and happy Eat Sleep Cycle team

This is an account of the first Eat Sleep Cycle Trans Pyrenees crossing – a ride that goes down in Eat Sleep Cycle legend. Thanks to those brave riders who signed up to the tour! This tour has evolved into our Trans Pyrenees Challenge tour – still a 6 day ride, still epic, and you’re invited. 


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