92km, 1287m climbing: Arles-sur-Tech – Maçanet de Cabrenys – Esponellà.
Ed had explained to Yann and me the previous night that our only way into Spain was over the mountains. A reattempt of Col d’Ares was an option, but there was also the less intimidating Col de Coustouges. Yann was ready to give Col d’Ares another shot but Ed pointed out that Col de Coustouges was a great climb. I said I’d sleep on it although I was definitely going with Col de Coustouges.
The following morning, we checked the weather report: ah, sunshine. But also more wind: 40+km/h with gusts exceeding 70 km/hr. The owner of the gîte was not in the least bit surprised for this type of wind was seasonal. It even had a specific name: tramontane. We had no choice but to go against the wind and head further south-east.