Campsite at Laucate To Collioure

Cycling Day 32 of Rode to the Rock.

Raising money for Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) : (UNSPONSORED)

The temperature is definitely rising!

The decision to sleep without the fly sheet – was the right one. Basically we are sleeping inside a mosquito net framed by the poles of the tent frame. Wearing little to nothing – is the best way to camp in Southern France.

The mosquitos come out early morning ,during the day and evening. Basically they’re out all of the time. I’ve been really upset with myself with my mozzy bites – I am sore from itching and I don’t get any rest from them.

They’re on my legs, back, feet, face!!

So we’ve bought the hard stuff – recommend by the locals. To read more about the tiger mosquito : Pasteur research department in France have placed a Red Alert strategy to prevent the spread of tiger mosquitos. They carry diseases.

This is no hardship compared to others struggling without healthcare around the world. We could never really understand because most of us are privileged to have a good health care service. Mine being the NHS. The first chance I get – I’m at the pharmacy asking for gold standard mosquito repellent. I don’t want any nasty diseases.

We had an interview with Gilly at Radio Newcastle – this afternoon. This went well. We discussed – the Ride to the Rock Challenge – the challenges such as the high temperatures and wild camping but mostly about how this will change the lives of the most vulnerable people in our world.

This is a fundraising challenge for Medecins Sans Frontieres / Doctors Without Borders. 70 countries around the world helping people who would otherwise have no access to care. We always say there is no such thing as a small donation . See the photos of what your kindness does.

With the heat being ” mind blowing’ hot – we took regular stops to cool down. It would be very easy to get heatstroke and become dehydrated. Sweating can be heavy and I mentioned to Andy my clothes feel difficult to pull up or down – like taking off a bathing suit or wetsuit.

On a ” cool off stop ” – we met Phillip the young gull. Isn’t he adorable. He’s a regular at the seafront bars and no one frightens him away. They put cold drinks out for him.

The Violet ice cream was Yum! I’m calling this medicine because it cools me down.

We can now see the Pyrenees and are heading and will be seeing more of these mountains on the coastline.

Today was beautiful passing through small towns and cycling on the coastline. Southern France has beautiful beaches – these are usually groomed. With tractors pulling some kind of rake to flatten the sand. Personally I prefer beaches a little more rugged – with sand dunes, shells and grasses scattered with flowers poking through.

We started to climb the closer we got to Collioure. This was late afternoon. The heat was increasing and the climbing became harder.

We continue to look at our route from Barcelona the current plan is shown below. The cut in-land after Barca is to try to avoid the very busy costal roads in the south which everyone says are miserable / dangerous. This however pushes us onto a very hot route. The weather in Ubeda – a randomly chosen town on our route is shown below – 41c at 1600hrs. If we go with this route we will start cycling ultra early – it’s 34c by 1200hrs do a 0600 start would seem sensible.

We cycled downhill into Collioure after climbing for an hour or so, pleased with ourselves. Personally I was looking forward to a shower, a cold drink and clean clothes. Simple things are very pleasing on the road. Thank you Annabelle for doing our washing – we appreciate your kindness and Andre thank you for our rest in your dads flat.

Collioure is a lovely harbour town. I am sure you would agree. It was idyllic to see the peace and tranquility of young children, teenagers and older people harmoniously enjoying the coolness of the evening sun – swimming in the harbour, picnicking on the beach or sitting on benches.

The sea was calm and the sun was setting. A perfect evening.

We are resting tomorrow (Saturday). We are extremely fortunate to have been given access to our friends Andre and Isabelle’s flat in Collioure. We are both incredibly grateful to them for this kindness and trust.

If you can please consider donating to my fundraising page: link below.


  1. Hello Tracey, I hope you had a good day off yesterday….. gosh I feel your pain with those bites & as for the heat, no words to say how much I admire your guts & determination .
    Thank you for writing the blog & sharing videos & photos ,it’s great to be able to share your journey & experiences . Keep taking care of each other , you’re both amazing , love Sue xx
    Ps ice cream looked delicious, I do love ice cream

    1. Hi Sue, how lovely to hear from you! Sorry I’m just getting back to you. We get really tired and most days off – I don’t look at my phone. Days off are usually relaxing though yesterday I had a hard bang on my head. Someone at the market dropped a scaffolding pole on my head. I’ve got an egg
      Thank you for following us. This makes me feel happy and I’ll not stop eating those ice creams

  2. hi I met you both on your last hill into Collioure, hope you continue to have the most amazing time, ups and downs of all kinds. Am following your blog and am in admiration , particularly when I read about your climb up to Col de Banyuls which we have only ever down in the middle of mountain bike circular rides from Collioure – will sponsor you Sue F!

    1. Hi Susan, its really nice to hear from you! I remember meeting you on that hill. How beautiful is Collioure. You are really blessed to spend quality time there! I fell in love with the harbour – people swimming in the sea from dawn to dusk. Yes the climb up Col de Banyuls – that was a climb!! Thank you for following us and sending this message. It means a lot!! Xx

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