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Sat Jul 27th 2019
2* Saturday Half Day Ride - OXFORD SPECIAL 2*
Leader:
John Tranter
Start Time:
1:00 pm
Start Location:
OMH
Description:
Half day ride (45-55km / 30-40 miles), with a tea stop, at a riding pace of 18-20km/h (11-13mph). Not likely to be very hilly. Might be a struggle for new or irregular riders in winter months.

This is a very special 2* ride which is different to the Oxford route I have used in recent months but goes back to a route we used a few years ago. We head out via Charney Bassett and cross the A420 on the nifty Southmoor footbridge. Then we follow the quiet road parallel to the A420 all the way to Cumnor and swoop down Cumnor Hill to the edge of Oxford. From there we cut through the Botley estate, find a secret underpass on the A34, take the back tracks to the river and then take the tow path more or less into the centre of town. We then fight through the tourists to my very own St Cross College for a VIP coffee stop. You can only get in if you are a friend of the Bursar, with catering from the fine cafes of St Giles. Talking of tourism, we will have a photo opportunity under the Bridge of Sighs before more fun as we follow the river path to the east, to Kennington and Sunningwell. Finally, we head for home via Tubney and Fyfield.

At just over 40 miles, it is a long ride for an afternoon, but we have a few short cut options in the final section which we can use if necessary. I don't expect to be back before 5.30pm. Having said that, there are very few hills and we will stick to a steady 2* pace.
Report:
Distinctly variable weather forecasts through the week, ranging from perfect to apocalyptic. In the end, it was a bit grey and we had a few drizzly moments, but nothing to worry about - just lots of switching between clothing options!

It was a nice evenly matched group and we made good time to Cumnor before the fun really started. All the cunning tracks and short cuts worked well and we arrived at St Cross College a little ahead of schedule (although fortunately not so early that the Bursar risked embarrassment clashing with a graduation ceremony). Lorna S joined us to for coffee, which was a nice bonus. We managed to successfully fight through the tourists to the river, and the towpath was nice and quiet all the way to Iffley Lock before we branched off to Kennington. There was some gentle climbing to Sunningwell and the sometimes busier roads were quiet across to Tubney. One tunnel and some impressive limbo riding later, and we were back on familiar roads heading for home.

Great fun with a great group!
Distance:
65.98 km (41.00 mi)
Ride Details:
https://ridewithgps.com/trips/37810939
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Ride Filter
Start Locations
WMP
Wantage Market Place
OMH
Old Mill Hall, Grove
Categories
1* - Suitable for irregular, social, beginner or family riders, pace will match the slower riders. Not hilly or long. Expect rides up to 3 hours. Gentle exercise.
2* - Suitable for regular riders who prefer to cover some distance but at a more relaxed pace. Likely to be half-day rides. Solid exercise.
3* - Suitable for experienced riders, may be hilly, long, quick, or any combination! Likely to be half or full-day rides. Challenging exercise.
4* - Suitable for athletic riders who can ride safely above the 3* standard. Quick rides for the fit.
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