Down the Lane

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Where:

Little Coxwell to Longcot

Season:

All four and then some.

Weather:

Everything from blizzard to blazing sun.

Route:

Down the lane from Little Coxwell to Longcot and back again.

Length

3 miles (or a handy 5k, if you happen to be training for Race for Life)

Walking Buddy:

So many people…

Musings:

This walk is a little different to most of the walks I write about on here as it’s one that I’ve been on with alarming regularity over the last couple of years.

I’ve been on this walk in spring, summer, autumn and winter; in sunshine, wind, rain, and miscellaneous weather. This was the route I used when I was training for Race for Life. I’ve contemplated pretty much everything from what to cook for dinner to whether I should radically change my career path, from how irritating that Travelodge advert is to global politics.
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So why am I writing about this walk now? Well, Hikers, I’ve just moved house which means this walk is no longer on the menu (unless I feel like making a 2hr round trip in the car).

The walk starts at Little Coxwell on a nice, wide lane. When I first started taking this walk, said lane was pretty uneven and regularly punctuated with vast, muddy holes. It has since been filled which makes for a far easier poddle.

The track swiftly starts to dip down and very soon you find yourself out of sight of the village. Once you’ve passed some allotments, you have the option on detouring into a field to your right. At the top of this field is a bench with stunning views across to white horse hill. Fun fact: you can also pick up 4G from it and I have, in fact, written various blog posts on my phone whilst sitting there.

Continuing along the lane, you’ll pass several fields which will often contain North Devon Cattle. I’ve had several (admittedly one sided) conversations with them over the last couple of years, Devon Maid to Devon Maids.

Just before the lane runs out, there’s a left hand turn into a track between two fields which brings you out into open farmland. The path proceeds straight across the middle of the next two fields. When I was training for Race for Life back in June, we’d had a bit of a heat wave (ish) and the ground was extremely dry and cracked. The weekend before the race, however, it rained just enough to make the top few milimeters of soil nice and slipery without doing anything to lesson the deep cracks caused by the draught. Hikers, if it weren’t for my freakily flexible ankles, I would probably have done some serious damage! So if you are running cross country under these conditions where the ground is slippery and uneven, and the crops were high; be very, very careful and be sure of your footing!

But back to hiking. After the fields, you will find yourself on a narrow lane. This is the point at which I would generally turn back, however if you follow the lane down to the road and turn right, you will find yourself in Longcot which boasts The King and Queen, which is apparently the winner of The Oxfordshire Restaurant Awards 2014.

I will miss this walk, Hikers. I’ve always found it very calming. My new home, however, is surrounded by beautiful rolling Cotswold countryside – so you can expect lots of new walks coming your way soon.

xxx
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{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Kay A Wardle October 1, 2015, 1:34 pm

    I,too, am going to miss this lovely walk. It has been such a delight to walk along it with you whenever I have been saying with you. Thank you for the lovely photos to remind me of happy times as well as walks that brought solace and healing.. I look forward to new paths to walk with you in the future but this one will always hold a special place in my memory. Mum x

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