Although my weekend in Le Nord was centered around the terrible cobbles of Paris-Roubaix, our hosts William and Alex decided that, since most of us were arriving in the early afternoon on Friday, there was enough time for some pavé riding after lunch – a Hellish apéritf, if you will.
So, after a fine lunch of shepherd’s pie and Belgian beer at William’s place in Lille, we loaded up our bikes and gear and drove across the border into Belgium.
On the left, in the distance, is Kemmelberg, our destination. This famous hill was an important battle site during WWI and still sees its share of fights during the Gent-Wevelgem pro race in the early spring.
After the ride we went back to their ‘HQ’, a wonderfully-situated, elegantly-designed gîte, not far the Paris-Roubaix route.
Next up: Day Two – Wheels on Hell