It’s the morning of day two, after checking maps and a quick breakfast at a café, I have made my way back to Putney bridge a bit later than yesterday.
The idea behind a later start was that any cafés or toilets or pubs on the way should be open by the time I reach them this time.
This side of London is such a sharp contrast to the start of my walk yesterday.
Not only it’s not foggy today, but more than the weather, the change of surroundings such as the boat houses, rowers, rowing boats, and ducks have replaced the industrial concrete factories and seagulls.
I left behind the concrete pavements to now follow what has become a towpath along the Thames, a track with leaves and occasionally mud. It’s Sunday morning so there are many dog walkers, families, runners and cyclists on the path.
In contrast to yesterday there isn’t as much variety on my walk. On my left are woods, sometimes houses or boat houses and, later on, Kew Gardens; on my right is the Thames with rowing boats and canal boats.
The walk features a nature reserve called ‘Leg’O’Mutton’ , Hammermith Bridge, Harrod’s Village and furniture depository too. Then I also went past Kew Gardens and Old Deer Park with its obelisk.
Hunger was setting in as I approached Richmond Bridge, so I was planning stop at a pub called the White Swan. But they were full so I carried on.
Richmond felt like a seaside town with its ‘beach’ by the bridge, the seagulls, an ice cream van, people waiting for food, and people going about their Sunday by the boats.
I stopped there for lunch, taking about an hour’s break. My feet were extremely sore.
Richmond has a lot of cafés and restaurants. If I had to do the walk again, I would definitely aim to get there for lunchtime.
On the way towards Ham House which is National Trust property, Petersham Meadows were looking really pretty, with some cows lying in the field.
At the risk of repeating myself, my feet were really sore since after lunch.
I went past Eel Pie Island. I read in my guide book was named after a dish they used today serve in the hotel, which has since been destroyed.
I stopped by the Ham Lands’ nature reserve because my feet hurt so much. I took ibuprofen with some water, I took off my hoodie and went on.
Despite the discomfort, I really enjoyed the area of Teddington and the locks.
Around 15:00 I approached Kingston upon Thames. Since the Ham Lands’ natural reserve, I have seen quite a few fishermen. I hadn’t seen any yesterday or in the morning.
I could see Kingston bridge in the distance, the sun was shining, and I was looking forward to dinner later with my friend Marieke who had joined me in London.
Just going past Steven’s Eyot, I observed more canal boats moored there, people feeding seagulls and swans and ducks and pigeons. On my left Canbury Gardens seemed such a beautiful lively park, lined up with benches, overlooking the Thames, Making it a very pleasant last little stretch of today’s walk towards the bridge.
I have completed day 2 of the Thames Path trail upstream. I walked from the Putney Bridge to Kingston Bridge in 6 hours.
I covered about 14 miles (22.8 km). The previous day it took me 9 hours for 23.5 miles (37.9 km). So that’s 15h of walk for 37.5 miles (60.7 km).
I’m so glad I gave this a start and look forward to the next stretch in a few weeks.
Now to get a train back to London.