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La Grande Boucle, Saddle Mountain Hostel style

Today is the last day of this year’s Tour de France. This afternoon those riders still in the race will cross the finish line on the Champs-Elysées in Paris after 21 stages and 3,519 kilometres!

When the race started we (well, Helen) set ourselves a challenge to cycle on every day of the Tour de France as well as keeping up with real race on TV too. So for the last three weeks, bar the two rest days (if the real riders can have them, we can too!), we have been on our bikes. As the race coincides with our peak season we have had to snatch what little time we have available during the day to complete our own La Grande Boucle, Saddle Mountain Hostel style. That, combined with the rainfall we’ve had in July, has meant a lot of time spent on our turbo trainer.  So much time that yesterday, with one stage to go, the skewer holding the bike in place snapped.

Today, for our final stage, we have been forced onto the road for only the second time in our version of the race! Of course, it’s much more fun on the road taking in the wonderful Highland scenery and climbing for real. But, the reality of being hostel owners is that getting spare time during the summer isn’t always that easy.

The jerseys have been decided in the real Tour de France, so long as all the current holders make it safely to the end. So, it seems only appropriate to award our own!  The overall winner and yellow jersey goes to Greg. More importantly, for Greg anyway, he wins the King of the Mountains classification and polka dot jersey. Helen wins the points classification and green jersey for her ability to win the intermediate sprints which are at a point of her choosing.  Also, by being the youngest competitor in the race, she wins the white jersey for best young rider!

All we can say is roll on La Vuelta a España and a similar challenge! Hopefully, we’ll spend a lot more time on the road.

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