Saturday, 16 January 2016

Dog Walks: The Ridgeway near Wantage, Oxfordshire

As one of my new years resolutions for 2016 is to take part in the #walk1000miles challenge, I'd like to incorporate that into my blog with the new addition of a blog feature that focuses on the many dog walks we do. I love exploring new places and Barry loves walkies so it seems like a good idea to blog a bit more about specific places we visit on our walks. Most will be local to us, but we are planning a few walking holidays this year hopefully.

Today Barry and I have been on our own all day as Jack was working and then went off to see the David Haye fight tonight and so I decided to explore a different area of The Ridgeway. It meant a car trip to get there but only eight miles down the road so not too bad for Barry who detests car journeys. The travel sickness doesn't seem to be too much of a problem now, it's rare he's sick. He does however get himself into a terribly anxious state, bless him. We've tried everything we can think of, everything recommended to us. It's such a shame as we feel so sorry for him, but at the same time we want to be able to take Barry out and about and so we have to just keep persevering in the hope that the frequency of trips will mean that at least he's used to car journeys. If anyone has any tips at all then please do comment as I'd love to know what has worked for your dogs.

It was a beautiful day up on The Ridgeway; frosty and sunny. The ground was still frozen even at about 3pm as we left and Barry had great fun discovering that puddles he usually loves diving into were in fact covered with ice. We didn't bump into many dogs on our walk, but we did bump into lots of walkers with their maps. It's always nice to see lots of people making the most of a good day weather-wise to get out into the fresh air.

We walked past the Lord Wantage Monument; this memorial sits high on The Ridgeway overlooking the valley down towards Wantage. It's a memorial for Lord Wantage, a soldier who was one of the first to be awarded the Victoria Cross in the Crimean war and was one of the founders of the British Red Cross. More info can be found here. We carried on along The Ridgeway for a while before I took a bridleway off to the left in the hope of eventually doing a big loop (I'd always rather do a big circular route than have to turn around and go back the same way, means you see more).

We walked through some lovely wooded areas before coming out onto a farm track which I eventually discovered was the Lockinge Estate. It has quite an interesting history and is still one of the largest estates to this day. They had a dairy, estate yards, stables, all in beautifully restored buildings. We walked around various areas of the estate, skirted on the edge of a village called Ginge and into Lockinge itself. The scenery was stunning and it was so peaceful.

Can you see the rhino statue in the garden?
We eventually made it back to our starting point and I think we were both grateful to see the car after over 6 miles of walking - even Barry didn't make much noise on the short journey home. First job was to give Barry (aka mud monster) a bath and then he wrapped himself up in his blanket in his bed and snoozed while I caught up on some housework and other bits and pieces. I had a jacket potato for dinner tonight, one of my favourite dinners! I've since been reading through cookbooks while catching up on the new BBC series, War and Peace (which is very good by the way).
Both of us snug in blankets post-walkies, you can just about see Barry!
Tomorrow's plan is for a shorter walk, followed by some crochet - I'm determined to get my blanket finished, so hopefully I'll have photos to follow soon.
#Walk1000miles total to date: 65 miles (long way to go yet!)
Em x

1 comment:

  1. What a lovely walk. Rocky seems to be the same as Barry as far as the car is concerned while he isn't sick it seems such an unpleasant journey for him. Enjoy your crochet today I have similar plans but am hoping for a sneaky yarn purchase xx