How much of the Ridgeway is rideable?

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  • How much of the Ridgeway is rideable?
  • rob2
    Member

    From goring you have to do a mix of bridleway and road around Wallingford and nettlebed way then it’s fairly normal from watlington. I did it the princes risboro direction years ago and it’s ok.

    We have a cafe just of the ridgeway in cholsey with bike mags and cake 🙂

    Just after some advice for my BiL who wants to ride the length of the Ridgeway starting from Avebury. I know it’s rideable to Goring; after that I thought it became more of a walkers trail. Any thoughts from people who’ve done it?

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Subscriber

    The actual start of the Ridgeway is not Avebury, it’s Overton Hill.

    Cool thanks for the info. Is Overton the one with Cherhill monument on it?

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Subscriber

    No, Cherhill is a bit further westwards along the A4. Virtually opposite the start of the Ridgeway is West Kennett Long Barrow, also a little westwards is Silbury Hill.

    Wiltshire is fantastic for relics!

    Edit: You can deviate to Avebury from the Ridgeway but opposite that is Fyfield Down that has the most amazing number of Grey Wethers.

    Ah gotcha-i know where you mean now. I often go through Fyfield Down or through to Cherhill from there but never really carry on further down the Ridgeway from there.

    DougD
    Member

    Just before heading down into Streatley, a stop at the Bell at Aldworth is a must for ale and good rolls. In fact, on a sunny day I’d be tempted to sack off the rest of the ride and just sit in the beer garden

    Any extra tips from the morning crowd?

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    PM me if you like, I don’t have GPS tracks but have ridden the Ridgeway e2e many times and now have pretty good alternatives to all the footpath / gated sections between Goring and Ivinghoe, would have to give you map refs though. The Thames path is a gated PITA and that’s one of the few sections where I ride on tarmac, for about 2-3 miles, that and one minor climb, the rest is off road. I do ‘cheeky’ one particular section as it’s a great trail, but there is a byway option that adds a mile or 2 and is more in keeping with the Ridgeway trail style.
    The far Chilterns end seems more ‘acceptable’ to cheeky trailing if it’s not mid-day on a sunny weekend or really wet, but a couple of sections around Nuffield and Swyncombe are off limits to responsible riders – there’s a very on-guard farmer in that area!

    https://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?msid=209481124411824590577.0004a6b276cde69dd79c7&msa=0&ll=51.681071,-1.148071&spn=0.76463,1.760559 – useful reference here

    jekkyl
    Member

    I’m doing the ridgeway this weekend coming, my friend and I are camping at uffington and then gonna cycle along it, have lunch and a pint and cycle back. Probably just do about 50 miles all in. Hoping the weather will be as nice as it has been this weekend gone. Just trying to work out if we should cycle east or west from uffington, for the best views and historical things to look at? any tips

    Premier Icon weeksy
    Subscriber

    MrPottatoHead – Member
    Any extra tips from the morning crowd?

    Not really, it’s all summed up quite well….

    Just along from the Bell you can drop into Goring instead to the cafe by the bridge for excellent cake and coffee 🙂

    soobalias
    Member

    you can ride the lot, but some sections the ‘original’ ridgeway continues as a footpath while a bridleway version of the ridgeway is rideable.

    whatever your thoughts are about cheeky riding, i dont recommend it on the ridgeway

    jekkyl
    Member

    from the websitre:

    Western half of The Ridgeway
    The western half of the Trail, from Overton Hill to Streatley on the River Thames, is a marvellous route for mountain bikers (those using touring bikes might struggle a bit) and horse riders. It provides an almost continuous 43 miles (69km) stretch of track with only a few short sections of road. Some sections have a hard stone surface whereas the rest is a natural surface, in places with some damage from excessive use – maintenance to repair these is ongoing

    East of the River Thames
    A considerable length of The Ridgeway east of the River Thames is public footpath which cannot be used by cyclists, horse riders or carriage drivers. However there is a lovely 9 miles (14km) stretch through The Chilterns that can be used on a bike or horseback. This is from Britwell Hill just west of Watlington to Bledlow, west of Princes Risborough. Carriage drivers can use the 5-mile (8km) restricted byway stretch from Britwell Hill to the A40.

    Those cyclists and horse riders wanting a long distance ride east of the Thames that uses The Ridgeway as much as possible have two good routes to follow. The Swans Way (phone 01296 382171 for leaflet) starts from Goring-on-Thames, just across the river from Streatley, and travels to Bledlow where it turns north away from the line of The Ridgeway. At Bledlow cyclists and horse riders can then join the Icknield Way Riders’ Route that provides a good alternative route to The Ridgeway as far as Pitstone Hill, just a couple of miles from Ivinghoe Beacon. Unfortunately riders and cyclists can’t continue to the end of The Ridgeway as the route to it is a public footpath.

    so the west of the river you’re all good, east of it you can find a way but your route won’t be on the ridgeway itself. Sustrans do a map of it: http://www.sustransshop.co.uk/products/5292-ridgeway

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    Just trying to work out if we should cycle east or west from uffington, for the best views and historical things to look at? any tips

    I’d head for Overton Hill, west. More open trails and views, less faffy with footpaths etc. 25 miles east gets you past Goring I think, it’s not great n-e of Goring unless you get to the Chiltern end and know that area.

    Premier Icon cinnamon_girl
    Subscriber

    Looking forward to reading the reports chaps! 😀

    jekkyl – if you head west from Uffington then there’s Wayland’s Smithy long barrow, Ashdown Park but you’d need to check opening times of this lovely looking residence, if you cross the M4 then there’s Liddington hill fort.

    You could take the bridleway dead opposite Uffington hill fort and it’s a pleasant ride alongside the gallops with springy turf heading down to Lambourn. Very close to that is Seven Barrows tumuli.

    Look out for hares and deer!

    rob2
    Member

    Not the cafe goring. The one in cholsey is much better and has bike mags to read and way cheaper 🙂 and only 5mins to the grims ditch bit of the ridgeway.

    🙂

    Premier Icon tommyhine
    Subscriber

    There’s plenty of trails you can do which are fine once you get to Princess Risborough through to Ivinghoe. They aren’t technically the ridgeway but they pretty much run parallel.
    In fact if you canny about your route through wendover woods you can have a blast around Aston Hill bike park on the other side of it. Might liven up precedings (drop your saddles a bit though)

    Edric 64
    Member

    I rode from Ivinghoe to Avebury it took a day and a half .The Eastern end has quite a lot of footpath .I got away with riding it all in 1991 as the trails were quiet in those days.From Goring West its all legal stuff but crap to ride if it has been very wet

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