WW1 ride – Reims to Verdun

A distinctly wet day today. Followed a canal tow path out of Reims – nice flat start, dodging the Sunday morning joggers. Then esst to the battlefields of Champagne, September 1915. Soon the cemeteries were coming thick and fast.

Having Jane and Del in support was great, and it solved the problem of Sunday in the back of beyond with everything shut and no food.

After about 50 miles we called in at a German camp, just north of the front.

At the end of the day we reached the battlefields of Verdun. We passed Monte de Morte, crossed thr Meuse at Bras sur Meuse )excellent coffee stop) and ascended the Ravin de Mort, at the north tip of the Verdun salient. Here some 80,000 bodies lie, and a wood was replanted over them. We climbed up to the memorial at Douaumont – the main French cemetery and memorial.

I had been reading eye witness accounts of the battle, I found the whole thing was almost overwhelming.

Then a long descent to a poor hotel in Verdun – a town that has seen better days.

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