Stage 21: Versailles to Paris

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What a crazy trip. In some ways, it’s like the end of Summer Camp, you don’t want to leave but at the same time, you’re wicked excited to go home. It’s a roller coaster of emotion, exhaustion, and excitement. You’re trying to get something done and sometimes it feels like the world (or maybe just the ASO or France) is conspiring against you… but other times you get the shot(s) and absolutely nail it. Sometimes your equipment (cars, computers, cameras) fail, and sometimes they come back to life. But in the end it’s like that euphoric dopamine rush at the end that wipes away any of that negative stuff and leaves you in amazement at what just happened over the past 25 days. We drove over 4000km across (mostly South-Eastern) France including Corsica got to see some of the most beautiful and diverse scenery Gaul has to offer all while photographing the 100th edition of the largest annual professional sporting event in the world.

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I thought this was the accredited photo-zone, what are these iPads doing here?

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The final laps in Paris play out a lot like a Criterium back home (with longer laps), really exciting to watch in person, the best view is indeed on TV, but you don’t get quite the same feeling as the racers come screaming by.

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Anyway, 2013 Tour de France is in the books; so long, and thanks for all the poissons.

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Might do one or two more posts about equipment, lessons learned, logics, village depart, et cetera.



Stage 20: Annecy to Annecy-Semonz

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Last day in the Alps, and one more day until Paris… unreal.

I’ve been saving up photos (hopefully I have enough) for a look at the Village Depart; what’s amazing to me is that at an event that I can basically wander around anonymously and in the Village Depart where every morning you have several hundreds of invitees puttering about inhaling all the free food this girl at the Senseo tent remembered me by sight and my coffee preference every day (there are about 5 different types, the only other guy working the tent really would just give me whatever was in front of him), I’m impressed.

The finish at the top of Semonz was even tighter than usual. I got out of the cattle drive eventually, but a further back didn’t offer up much more room.

Semonz is a ski area in the Winter, not unlike other Alpine finishes we’ve had. In the summer though, this is probably the first ski area I’ve seen with cattle free roaming the hills.



Stage 19: Bourg-d’Oisans to Le Grand-Bornand

I think everyone was on a collective hang-over from Alpe d’Huez, there were still camper vans leaving the mountain this morning… crowds on Col de la Madeleine were sparser and much tamer.

Overnight KOM leader, Christophe Riblon, after winning on l’Alpe d’Huez was certainly not as sprightly as the day before.

Incase you were wondering how close those TV helicopters actually fly: close.