What we thought was going to be an easy day, turned out to be a day of tough climbs in hot weather. Twice we stopped to top off our bottles in villages along the way. Most villages have a fountain that was probably used by all before indoor plumbing came along. Now the fountains mainly aid weary cyclists.
From Albertville we headed to Saint Jean de Maurienne. Many cyclists would probably get there by riding over the Col du Madeleine, but we feared Madeleine’s length, 30km, and steep grades. Although we followed a valley to get to Saint Jean, we stuck to the edges to avoid traffic. The edges proved to be rather hilly. It was good riding but very hot.