Cotswolds
England
2020

Stow-on-the-Wold and Bourton-on-the-Water


30. 8. 2020

Peter Schrammel

Weather

windy, changeable, sunny, cloudy

Interest

***: Beautiful towns in the Evenlode and Windrush valleys...

Route

Oxford, 62m - Charlbury, 115m - Cornwell, 160m - Stow-on-the-Wold, 235m - Bourton-on-the-Water, 135m - Upper Rissington, 245m - Shipton-under-Whychwood, 110m - Leafield, 185m - Witney, 88m - Eynsham, 69m - Oxford

Elevation gain

882m

Distance

108km

Timing

7h (1 1/2 + 1 1/4 + 3/4 + 1/2 + 1/3 + 1/2 + 2/3 + 1/2 + 1/2 + 1/2)

Stamina

F

Difficulty

0

Danger

0

Visitor frequency

cars, cyclists and over-tourism at its peak in Bourton-on-the-Water

Report

The Bank Holiday weekend Sunday would be dry and at least sunny in the morning, but very fresh in the morning. I left after 8am via Jericho and along the channel to Yarnton and then to Long Hanborough. The sky was divided in a cloudy eastern hemisphere and blue sky in the west. I continued to Charlbury, but missed the cycle route west of river Evenlode. So I had to cycle on the main road into Charlbury. After a drink stop at 9.30am I continued the steep road up and down to Spelsbury. From there I took a quieter country road to Chadlington where I turned right to reach Burford Road. After a short uphill section with a lot of car traffic I turned left on the road to Cornwell. I stopped briefly to take pictures of the nice view over the valley to Salford. After a steep downhill I climbed up past Cornwell manor and again steep downhill through Adlestrop back in Evenlode valley. Now I cycled with gentle ups and downs flat to Broadwell. There were lots of cyclists that overtook me on the way. Footballers were playing on the village green. I had to climb a last hill to Stow-on-the-Wold. I followed the cycle path signs, which led me on a bridle way past the roman well into the pittoresque village centre located on top of the hill. There were nice views down the Evenlode valley and quite some tourists strolled through the streets. I took a break n the churchyard to eat my sandwich, while the bells were ringing 12 o'clock. Now I could cycle down the entire hill again to Lower Swell - quite an impressive downhill ride. From there I continued to Lower Slaughter, where lots of cars parked along the roads and walkers blocked the beautiful streets and waterways. No surprise that here was a little traffic jam on the main road towards Bourton-on-the-Water. Bourton-on-the-Water was crazily crowded tourists. I couldn't even push my bicycle in the streets and along river Windrush. People were queuing for photos on the arched bridges. I didn't stay long and continued at 1pm up the hill to Upper Rissington, and then via Church Westcote, Fifield, to Milton and Shipton-underWychwood. Many newly built homes were offered for sale there, of course built in the mellow sandstone style typical for the Cotswolds. A long uphill section brought me to Leafield, from where I cycled down to Clawley, yet another beautiful village on river Windrush. I took a steep, short uphill to bypass most of Witney. On the hill out of Witney I noticed that my legs were quite tired already. I continued to South Leigh, but this time I tried the bridleway along the old railway line to Eynsham. The central part is more a footpath on a meadow, then followed by a quiet road into Eynsham. It was almost 4pm when I bought icecream in the grocery and took a brief rest on the town square. Finally, I continued via Botley and North Hinksey into Oxford, which I reached after 4.30pm.


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