Despite the appeal of staying another night at the Ace Hotel in Seynod, just out of Annecy (comfy bed and nice breakfasts) Friday was time to move on. Karen had plotted a scenic route from Annecy to Chamonix via the D1508, so I snuck the bike out of the secure underground garage (parking was five euros/night but only if you told them you were using it) and then I parked the bike near our open window so Karen could pass the gear bags out to me as I waited below, a bit like Ruppunzel just different. Loaded up we scooted around the corner to get some fuel and had a trying time at the garage with an impatient car driver edging closer and closer to the bike – at this servo you fuel up then get back in your car and then pay at a little booth you must exit past. Anyway got out of there and then got routed by the GPS through some of old Annecy before we picked up the D1508 and started making our way through the valleys towards Chamonix.
At Ugine the road we wanted had disappeared underneath a load of construction vehicles but just as we were trying to figure out an alternate route a man jumped out of a truck with a big road sign pointing to a deviation, so we followed that cue and were soon heading up into the alps, following a series of switchbacks and twisty roads as we made our way through the sunshine. We just took the riding easy today as I was still a bit clogged up with a head cold and not feeling 100%, and these roads demanded your full attention in some places.
We eventually picked up a motorway for the last leg into Chamonix after descending a very twisty hill with an impatient car stuck on our rear bumper – I usually pull over and let faster traffic through but on this twisty section there was nowhere safe to pull over and I was doing the speed limit anyway …. I think a lot of French drivers fancy themselves as the next Alain Prost.
We stopped for lunch in Chamonix – note – don’t sit at a table for four if you’re only a couple as you’ll be reseated quicksmart, even if there are no other potential customers around. After a lacklustre omelette each we remounted and headed a few km’s out of town to our campsite.
The campsite we intended to go to was closed, so we went with option 2 at Des Ecureuils at the foot of Bosson Glacier. The office was closed until 4.00pm (2 hrs away) so we cheekily checked out the sites, picked one and set up camp with a magnificent view of Aiguille De Merdi, The Bosson Glacier and Mt Blonc ….fantastic! We sorted things out when the office opened but unfortunately got incorrect directions to the supermarket and ended up walking about 3km in the wrong direction before turning back. We then walked another 2km to eventually find it. We got a few supplies for dinner and breakfast and headed back to camp. Dinner was ravioli out of a tin, warmed up using our trusty dragon fly stove. After watching the light from the setting sun illuminate the Bossons Glacier, the myriad of colours, it was time for bed.