When the news is so unremittingly bad, it’s good to return to a place with good memories. We love the Thames Valley! It’s been a while since we were last in Goring. We’ve got memories of walking here over 25 years ago. Last time, I seem to remember, we’d promised to return one day and set up a coffee shop. Well, we’ve not got close to that dream but we are still walking.
This really is a walk of two halves and, on the hottest day this year for walking, we’re glad the first 7 miles are mostly through woods. From Goring we follow the gentle climb through Great Chalk Wood, Cray’s Pond and Goring Heath. It’s noticeably cooler in the shade and we have the paths to ourselves…the heat seems to have selected for mad dogs and Englishmen. We pass a charcoal making camp at Cray’s Pond. Sensibly, they’ve stopped today!
The return route takes us passed Mapledurham again and back along the Thames by way of Hardwick House, Whitchurch-on-Thames and Goring. It’s mid-afternoon by now. We arrive back at Goring none-too-soon, after walking 12.6 miles and retire to the nearest convenience store for thirst quenching drinks!
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is reported to have said, ‘A town life makes one more tolerant and liberal in one’s judgement of others.’ Really?! When the countryside and the weather are this good you can keep the city!
Goring picture gallery (more pictures on Flickr):
Distance: 12.6 miles ; Difficulty: Moderate
Coordinates for Satnav: N51° 31.314′ W1° 07.851′