London to Oxford via the Hanson WayAugust 25, 2009 at 9:01 am | Posted in Cycle Rides, Cycling, Eating and Drinking, Travel | 1 Comment
The first stage of the journey is complete. It began and ended with canal locks (Broadway Market, London, and Iffley Lock, Oxford, via the extremely pretty St Pancras lock) and took in some truly awful industrial smells, a goose farm and aggressive and persistent wasps along the way. I would like to report that the Hanson Way is worth exploring but I’m afraid I can’t – or at least I would only advise fellow cyclists to bother with the stretch from Abingdon to Oxford. The Didcot end is something of an industrial hell but things pick up at Sutton Courtenay and get steadily nicer the nearer you get to Oxford.
Luckily Iffley Lock is really lovely so I sat and watched the pipe-smoking lockkeeper at work while waiting for my friend James to come and meet me. A couple of gin and tonics later and all was well with the world.
We’re now making our picnic – cheese and cucumber sandwiches and pots of rice pudding – and slowly packing our panniers. Time to set off!