Tarbes to La Pierre-Saint-Martin - 167 km
It is a long 25.8 km final climb tomorrow for the first climbing day in the Pyrenees, steep in the middle and not so much at the top. The beginning might shake a few riders off, the middle a few more, but the man who has a climber teammate to pace him to the top will be the lucky one.
Stage 10 route map
|Stage 10 route map TDF 2015|
|Stage 10 profile map TDF 2015|
There will be four climbs on route tomorrow.
I like veloviewer climb profiles because they give the impression of whether a climb is winding, this one is. The top of the climb, where it opens up a bit, has some corners the fans will love - they will be able to see the action approaching. The middle part, the helicopters will not love - there are trees and turns.
|La Pierre-Saint-Martin profile veloviewer|
The climb of La Pierre-Sainte-Martin
I have been fortunate to ride from Arette up to the Col du Soudet to La Pierre-Sainte-Martin, the mountain top finish of Stage 10 on Tuesday, July 14th (Bastille Day!). My blog post by Pedal Dancer® Today I rode to the Frontiere of Spain, from 2010!
|It is steep in parts. Photo by Karen Rakestraw of Pedal Dancer®|
|Ski station ahead. NOBODY was home in summer. Photo by Karen Rakestraw of Pedal Dancer®|
Pedal Dancer Rankings of the climb to La Pierre-Saint-Martin (0-5, five being fabulous!)
2 : Overall gotta do it score
2 : Where am I (somewhere between France and Spain, I couldn't see too far from the saddle)
3 : Atmosphere (trees, some cows, ski station, in the middle of nowhere, bring survival gear)
4 : Traffic (none, which made it nice but a little too secluded)
3 : Climb quality (I did it 15%!)
4 : Glad I did it (because I know what that part of the Pyrenees looks like on a bike)
1 : Would do it again (once is enough, although the view during 1 km was nice and I saw a cow)
2 : Cafe after the ride (was fine, located at the bottom in Arette, nice group of Germans invited me for a drink. Absolutely nothing at the top!)
I am glad I dared to venture east of the main core climbs (Tourmalet, Aubisque) of the Pyrenees to tackle this climb. It is not difficult, although I took advantage of that 15% sign as an excuse to stop and take a photo on the way up, it is however a commitment. It just keeps going up and up and I didn't see one other cyclist on the climb. The German cyclists I found afterwards at the cafe at the bottom, made me wonder if they had just ridden to the cafe and stayed there all day.
|Some not often visited names for the Tour de France. Photo by Karen Rakestraw of Pedal Dancer®|
Approximate time of Stage 10 finish (a little earlier than usual): 16:43 CET (6:43 AM EDT, 8:43 AM MDT)
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Read more 2015 Tour de France Coverage by Pedal Dancer®