Bastogne is the midpoint of the famous Liège-Bastogne-Liège classic bicycle race, one of the biggest events in the professional cycling calendar, dating from the end of the 19th century.
Liège-Bastogne-Liège, often called La Doyenne ("the oldest woman"), is one of the five 'Monuments' of the European professional road cycling calendar, and the oldest. The first edition was run in 1892, but this was just for amateur riders, the first race for professionals took place in 1894 when Leon Houa (who had won that 1892 race as an amateur) triumphed. It is run in the Ardennes region in Belgium, from the city of Liège to Bastogne and back.
The race follows a fairly straightforward 95 km route from Liège to Bastogne, and a winding 163 km route back to Liège. The second half contains most of the climbs in the race, such as the Stockeu, Haute-Levee, La Redoute, Saint-Nicolas and the Col de Forges before finishing in the northern Liège suburb of Ans. The many hills in the later part of this race gives many opportunities for riders to attack, and the race often rewards the more aggressive riders such as Michele Bartoli and Paolo Bettini.
The walk we decided to make...
The walk we decided to make started in Achouffe. The walk was described as the 'Walk of narrow footpaths'.
But now, after all this rain, it was more like a walk through (not always so) narrow brooks & pools of mud.
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