Germany - France
June 2o24

Remich - Verdun 24  June 2024
120 km / 75 ml

A long and difficult ride today, pulling myself out of the Mosel / Moselle valley, which is quite steep, and up and over some ridges until I came to some upland flat, but only to have a final tough climb up to Verdun, where I am camping in a typically French campsite, where you can even order your fresh baguettes and croissants for the next morning. I got told off this morning for not having ordered my pain au chocolate last night. So, I’ve made sure to order two for tomorrow.  I was reprimanded for not having booked a pitch with electric when I asked if there were any plugs. But, I think that has to do more with the bossy little chain smoking jobsworth at reception.  He evidently likes catching people out and telling them off.

The weather is lovely, and so it is no problem camping.  Quite pleasant, in fact.  I’ve left the Mosel / Moselle now, and have passed through Luxembourg, and then quickly in to France, and on to Verdun.  This part of the trip is supposed to take in some of the WW1 front line, which passes through here at Verdun, which for the French was a major, long  and costly battle.  It’s their Somme.  I’m going to stay here two nights, because I want to spend some time having a bit of rest, and also to visit the Verdun citadel and museum and find out a bit more about their WW1 story.  I write this sitting at a little cafe in Verdun watching the world pass by and enjoying a Perrier menthe.  Very civilised.

I’ve worked out a schedule and programme for getting home by Saturday, which involves cycling from Verdun to Reims tomorrow, Wednesday, and then on Thursday taking the train from Reims to Amiens, followed on Friday riding from Amiens to Arras and taking in the Longueval war cemetery when my great-uncle Alf Carruthers on my father’s side is  buried, killed at the Somme in 1916, and then on Saturday taking the train from Arras to Calais and the ferry home, and then training it back to Brum.  The trains I have to take in France are the slow ones because of my bike.  The fast TGV won’t take bikes.  Anyhow, I will be able to watch the countryside pass by at leisure and relax a bit.  The reason I’m having to do this is because I need to be back in good time so that I can get suited and booted for the opera at Glynebourne early next week.  A special birthday treat. Cycling in Europe means that you can take trains if you need to, very different to the USA where there is often not the option.

I’ll tell you more about Verdun when I’ve done my citadel and museum visit.


Berlin-Lutherstadt  :   Lutherstadt - Bernberg. :   Bernberg - Blankenberg  :  Blankenberg - Einbeck  :  Einbeck - Kassel  : 

Kassel - Kirchheim  :  Kirchheim - Marburg  :  Kirchheim - Limberg/Diez  :  Limberg/Diez - Mainz  :  Mainz - Koblenz  :

Koblenz - Krov  :  Krov - Remich  :  Remich - Verdun  Verdun : Verdun - Reims  :  Reims - Amiens  :  Amiens - Arras


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