Col des Ares

Col des Ares out of Cazaunous

Date: 3rd September 2022
Ride No. 17
Grade: 4/10
Location: Sengouanent


Segment ID: 16606995
My Time: 22:07





We’re not moving

After the Col de Portet d Aspet and fuelled by two double espressos and too much baguette, it was time for the Col des Ares.

A 6.5Km, 4/10, so definitely an opportunity for a bit more aggression and attack.

All set up on the large chain ring, clipped in and ready to go.

Kill it, Agh!

At the halfway point, my legs felt a gear drop might be a good idea.

It would have been a good idea, but the gears went on strike.

They were enjoying the fight and wouldn’t change.

It was a choice to either stop or curse and continue?

Enjoy the burn, as my TrainerRoad program often relishes telling me when I am training.

With one final lung bursting effort, I dragged my flambéed carcass past the summit post.

The summit was noticeably quiet. No doubt my cursing and ‘macho encouragement’ sounds frightened everything within miles.

Or maybe quite the opposite.


Cyclists are off

My sweat filled eyes didn’t allow me to view the landscape on the way up. On the occasions they did open it was to focus down on my stuck gears.

But now I could see the wide-open views across the valley and a committee of vultures circling above me.

My desperate groans must have alerted them to the potential snack of a baguette stuffed cyclist.

Now back at the car, I looked down at the gears. They all looked fine.

The parts needing to move, moved and the parts needing to be tight were tight, puzzling.

Then I looked at the handlebars.


The outer cable had dislodged from the gear-changer, forcing the inner cable to be at full tension.

If I had seen it, I could have fixed it in a second while I was riding.

“How annoying” is a polite way of expressing my sentiment.

After a cable reset and a short spin up to confirm, I packed the Brompton into the car and contemplated the next climb.

It was still early and still feeling empowered by half a chicken with a baguette. I thought, a tough one or a very tough one?

Well, it had to be the…