Today I walked about 18 miles (not flat though!)
I left the Bull in Streatley at about 08:15 and headed down the hill in Goring for breakfast at Pierreponts, which serves lovely food. I also asked them to make me a sandwich to take away, so lunch was sorted. I was in good spirits.
Richard joined me at the café, and we had a chat before heading out on the trail. We started by the bridge in Goring at 09:25. I was disappointed that we were away from the Thames for most of this part, with houses blocking the view of the riverside. The terrain was flat.
We reached the Perch and Pike pub at about 10:30, which looked nice but was shut at the moment, in between owners. In North Stoke at 12:00, we took a wrong turn at the church but quickly got back on track. I turned off the Thames side to the Ridgeway track at 12:30. At that point Richard went across the river, joining the Thames Path back to Streatley.
There were a lot of bikes, wind, flies, and “countryside ” smells on that stretch, so I didn’t stop for lunch as early as I’d wanted after the turnoff. I stopped for lunch way after the trig point, near Grimm’s Ditch, and started again at 13:30.
I really struggled physically from that point, especially around 14:00. I felt faint and weak, and I’m still unsure why. I was also sweating a lot from that point. The weather was heavy and muggy all afternoon, which didn’t help.
In Nuffield I tried to use the water by the church but it had green bits in which means my water bottle which I was topping up, wasn’t drinkable anymore.
Shortly after Ewelme Park at 15:40, just before St Botolph’s, I was joined by my biggest supporter this week, Craig, who had parked in Watlington and walked the last miles with me. He also brought me water, which I was running out of. We walked up what felt like a never-ending hill before finally dropping down a hill where I stopped, sat on a log, and had some salted cashew nuts and more water.
We reached White Mark Farm at 17:30. I was very pleased with the distance (18 miles), but my feet were sore, especially the ball of my left foot. We walked to the pub, where I had a nice pint of Village Idiot and a meal with Craig. We then popped into the Co-op for supplies for tomorrow, and Craig dropped me back at the campsite.
I can’t find anyone at reception, so I’ve settled in the tent anyway, but it means I can’t find out how to charge my devices.
My phone is well charged, but my battery pack is on 11% and my watch on about 20%. It’s not enough to last me tomorrow. I still need to double-check my route for tomorrow (probably again 18 miles), and I’m not sure how I’ll cope on that distance alone, but I’ll do my best.
Over and out.