Oxfordshire, Wiltshire and Berkshire hills – lovely, but not quite the alps

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Dragon Hill – again

We got back home from the alps late on Thursday night. Despite too much cheese, bread, potatoes and wine, I managed to return weighing a little over 66 kg which is better than I’d feared.

I got out on the bike this morning despite still feeling a bit jaded – it’s not that I’m worried about a lack of training for next weekend’s sportive, of course.

It was breezy but I went gently, looking for some hills – typically that means heading for the Ridgeway.

First I went up Dragon Hill Road to the White Horse at Uffington – I make that the 177th ascent of it this year after using it as a key training climb in my everesting training. Then along the undulating Ridgeway road, turning off for a climb up Sincombe Hill and a descent into Lambourn (with a lot of race horses out on the gallops).

Climbing back out of Lambourn I rode through Baydon, Bourton, Shrivenham and back via Highworth and Coleshill (which is largely a National Trust village but was also the home of the late, lamented, Sir George Martin).

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Coleshill … er … hill

… and Badbury Hill …

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Looks OK but it kicks up in the trees with bits at 15% and 16%

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Why do hills never look as steep in pictures as they feel when riding them?

Clocking up a few more metres of climbing in and around Faringdon I did a total of 73 km with 1008 m of ascending. It felt pretty tough and I rode it at only just over 24 kph – but somehow managed 36 Strava ‘achievements’. I have no idea how that happened.

I’ve always avoided any product placements or endorsements in this blog but if, like me, you lie awake at night wondering how you can organise your next cycling holiday in Taiwan, help is at hand through ‘Pedal Taiwan’, a company set up by the son of some friends.

The cycling and scenery look spectacular so if you are going to be in the area – or are looking for something just a little different – please have a look at their Facebook page.

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