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This Week's Walks - Archive

Please see the Saturday Walker's Club This Week's Walks page.

This is an archive of walks done by the Saturday Walker's Club. You should only need to use this page if the SWC website is down.

Blog Archive

Saturday, 18 July 2020

Saturday walk - Marlow Circular - an easy walk along the Thames

Length: 21.3km (13.2 miles). Shorter options are available ending at Henley of 13.5km (8.4 miles) or 15.2km (9.4 miles), though these are obviously not suitable for those avoiding public transport

Catch the 9.57 train from Paddington (10.05 Ealing Broadway) to Marlow, arriving 10.57.

Meet just outside the station to do a socially-distanced meet up and split into groups of no more than six. You must be prepared to swop contact details with others in your group for contact tracing purposes

As usual, you must also bring the directions, map or GPX so you can be responsible for your own wayfinding if necessary.

I thought that those on the western side of London deserved to have a walk this week. For any that don't know it, this is a straighforward walk along the Thames Path in the morning, with a walk back through the woods in the afternoon.

One seasonal attraction on the last section of this walk is Homefield Wood: normally a rather dull stretch through a wood on a valley-bottom track, but at present you should find it full of wild flowers and butterflies, the latter hopefully including the magnificent silver-washed fritillary, one of our largest and most striking butterflies (I hoped to provide a link to a photo, but Blogger/Flickr has other ideas: Google it). In fact, if you only know this stretch of the walk in autumn or winter, you will be quite amazed.

Experience on recent walks is that everyone opts for a picnic lunch, but there are several pubs en route, as you will see from the walk description. The Flower Pot in Aston has no special information about its current status on its walk page. The Stag and Huntsman says anyone using it has to send them a contact number by email.

Hambleden also has a village shop that does takeaway teas in normal times, and Marlow, at the end of the walk, has lots of refreshment options.

The shorter options are to stay on the river or go over Remenham Hill to Henley: see the walk directions.

Trains back from Marlow are hourly, on the hour (00 past)

Trains back from Henley are at 01 and 31 past. If doing this ending, you would be best advised to buy a day return to Henley-on-Thames rather than to Marlow. T=2.8


Walker said...

I set off to do this walk, but became aware on the train that I was feeling a bit underpowered and “chesty”. Probably nothing, but from an abundance of caution I decided to not to join the group walk. An agonising decision because I was looking forward to it. A preview of the kind of awkward decisions that await us when the autumn cold and flu season starts... I hope the others - about a dozen, I hear .. enjoyed the walk and that someone will do a walk report.

Walker said...

For the reasons outlined in the last comment, I was NOT on this walk, but I received the following by text from one who was: “I think we were n=10 on walk altogether. Emails and some phone numbers exchanged. Had lunch at Flower Pot. Long queues and indifferent food. New chef not working out. 3 walked to Henley.”

Me again: I can add to the above report that five walked to Marlow, since they passed me in Homefield Wood, where I was in solo ultra-socially-distanced contemplation of a stunning array of butterflies (silver-washed fritillaries, white admiral, peacocks, red admiral, gatekeeper, large skipper, brimstone, small white) and gorgeous carpets of wild flowers. (One advantage of NOT being on the walk was that I had a long time to stand and look...) This really is a glorious place in mid July. Since only five SWC walkers passed me and three walked to Henley, the other two must have beamed up to their spaceship (or retraced their morning route to Marlow, I suppose).(Or maybe there were two in the party I did not know and they passed me without me realising it.)

The weather was with w=sunny-intervals-followed-by-cloud-followed-by-hot-sun. A classic summer’s day

David Colver said...

Walker didn’t join this walk through an abundance of caution. I didn’t join it through an abundance of incompetence, mistaking a Crossrail train on platform 12 for the appointed one on platform 14. Realised my mistake before it set off, but after the other had left, so rode it to Maidenhead and walked to Marlow from there, hoping to meet the rest of the group as they finished but recognising no one.

Spent 45 minutes looking at the Marlow lock operating at more or less normal capacity, then took the 1700 home. Cookham and Marlow look much more alive and less locked down than London.