Telegraph-Galibier on "Stand-in Simon"

We returned to the French Alps, specifically to St-Jean-de-Maurienne, with one thing on our to do list. I was going to ride Col du Galibier via Col du Telegraphe.

There is some history to this, but as it turns out, the fact that I'd only ridden Galibier from Lauteret (which isn't the proper side according to KKB) doesn't factor much in this story.

The real story is getting to the alps to ride the Cols without a bike in working order. That's where "Stand-in Simon" the Scott bike comes in.

Pool buoy / lake buoy

I went for a swim in the Lake D'Orta during our stay here. It was very short and I didn't stray too far from the shore, nor too far from where I started.

The water was clear, fresh, cool (but not cold). It was a real treat!

If I lived on a lake like this, I would probably never swim in a pool. My navigation in open water swims would improve out of sight and I wouldn't run into support craft like I did at Roth the other day.

I would probably have to get a buoy for visibility like this swimmer, who went past while we were eating lunch.

A small sacrifice to make I reckon!

A reluctant rockstar in Roth

I arrived at the start of Challenge Roth, feeling many things. Overwhelmingly, I was scared.

I wasn't ready for this. My body wasn't strong enough and the colds and injuries I'd been fighting for the last few months had probably left it a little bit broken.

Not very rockstar.

An iron-distance triathlon is always a bit of an epic. There is time for plenty of ups and downs along the way. All I had in my favour this time was experience. It was time to draw on this experience by getting myself into my routine, and start preparing myself psychologically, even if I didn't feel physically up to the task.

The key (bracelet) to swimming in France

I knew when returning to the Alps that there would be a last minute chance for a swim. While there were pools in all the places we'd stayed - they hadn't opened for Summer yet. So I'd been out of luck.

I discovered last time we were here that there are systems to follow at the pools in France. It's not like at home where you wander in, pay your money, and get into the pool at your leisure. What would I be getting myself in to here?

A look around Luz St-Sauveur

:We've transferred to the Alps but it's worth finishing off Luz St-Sauveur first. I took a walk around where we were staying on the last evening in town and captured some of the ambience.

After six hot days in the Pyrenees, the cloud from the mountains came down into town. It became cool and misty and perfect for a few photos.