January 2022

Our midweek rides are often social rides at which male partners are welcome. Here we are at The Old Shed, near Charlbury, in December.

As we move into 2022, there is still uncertainty surrounding further Covid restrictions. We are planning on the basis that things remain the same, but please bear with us if the situation requires us to make changes in the way we organise our rides. We are still trying our best to choose refreshment venues that have both outdoor and indoor seating. Most venues seem pretty happy to accommodate outdoor eating/drinking – some even provide blankets!

Saturday 8th 29th January: Short & Steady Ride – Ruskin’s Ride

08/01/22: Bad weather has prompted us to postpone this ride until the end of the month. Do join us then, when we hope for a better day!

Meet at 9.45am in Radcliffe Square (at the back of the University Church) for a prompt 10am departure on a gentle 10.8 mile ride to North Hinksey where John Ruskin, first Oxford Professor of Fine Arts from 1869, lived. It’s opposite The Fishes PH. As their opening time is late on a Saturday, we’ll be taking our refreshments at the Jericho Coffee Traders cafe on the Osney Industrial Estate instead and returning to the centre of town using the river towpath. The ride is a flat one and groups will be lead by Sarah Twine and Yvonne Macken.

Link to the short & steady route

Saturday 15th Sunday 16th January: Medium Ride – North-East to Islip

15/01/22: Note the change of day and later start time, due to a forecast of mist and fog. Also, please bring and use lights, particularly rear ones, and flashing ones if possible. We will need to be as visible as possible!

Meet at 10am 11am in Radcliffe Square (at the back of the University Church) for a prompt 10.15am 11.15am departure for the pleasant village of Islip. Today we will be riding the route given below in reverse and so will be leaving Oxford via N. Oxford and Cutteslowe before taking the lovely Water Eaton track to Gosford. We will then head up the Bicester Rd for a short stretch before taking the road to Islip where we will take our refreshments at The Red Lion PH. After coffee, we’ll cross the River Cherwell and climb up the B4027 before descending and turning to Woodeaton. We will return to the City Centre via Marston and the University Parks cycle track. The route is 16 miles long and the leader will be Liz Weekes.

Link to the Medium Route (we are riding in reverse!)

Saturday 22nd January: Long Ride to Bletchingdon Waterperry

18/01/22: In light of the similarity between the route originally planned for today and last week’s medium ride, today’s route will now take us to the tea room at Waterperry Gardens. We will also start later than originally announced, in case of ice on the roads.

Meet outside the University church in Radcliffe Square at 10:45 for a prompt 11:00 departure, heading out through Marston, Northway and Barton to take the country road north-east to Horton-cum-Studley. From there, we swing into a generally south-easterly direction to Worminghall, and then south-west to Waterperry, which lies at the 15-mile point. Since we will probably arrive there around 12:30, you may wish to have lunch. The return route takes us across the A40 at Wheatley, followed by a climb through Littleworth, joining Gidley Way at the top. This takes us down to Horspath; thence to the ring road at the Mini plant and on to Horspath Driftway and Barracks Lane. We disperse just past the far end of Barracks Lane, at the junction of Bartlemas Close and Cowley Road, by which time we will have ridden a shade over 22 miles. The leader is Liz Matthews.

At the time of writing (Tuesday) the weather is forecast to be dry, cloudy and cold (3-5 degrees) with a light wind. However, please bring lights in case of poor visibility or a generally low light level.

Link to the Long Ride Route

Tuesday 25th January – Midweek Ride: North Aston

Meet at 10am in Radcliffe Square, Oxford (at the back of the University Church) for a 10.15am departure on a ride up and down the Cherwell Valley. There will be a pick-up point at Costa Coffee in Summertown (on the corner of Banbury and Oakthorpe Rds) at 10.30am. We will then make our way to Upper Wolvercote and join the canal, following the newly-rebuilt towpath past Duke’s Cut lock as far as the A44, then a generally good quick cycle path along the main road for coffee at Woodstock (~9mls).

We then follow fairly quiet roads north-east from Woodstock, crossing (in small groups, for safety) the fairly busy and fast A4260 at Sturdy’s Castle heading for the pretty village of Tackley, where there is a village shop.

A steady climb out of Tackley takes us to the Rousham road to cross the A4030 at Lower Heyford and climb a significant hill up to attractive Steeple Aston (where there is a steep down and up) continuing northwards to North Aston for lunch, where we plan to book at the Yurt at Nicholson Nurseries (~19 mls).

We start the homeward journey with a long descent to the Cherwell and then up into Somerton, turning south towards Upper Heyford with views to the west across the valley to the villages we cycled through earlier.    After a left-right in Upper Heyford it is a mostly straight and fairly flat run all the way through Kirtlington and down the Bletchingdon hill towards Water Eaton where we’re on the cycle path past the Parkway Station and back into Summertown.

If the weather has been dry and ground conditions are good we may take an alternative route along the off-road unsurfaced green lane through the woods from Woodstock, which misses Tackley and heads straight for Rousham.

This ride is 35 miles long and, unless we use the green lane, will not feature anything rougher than surfaced canal towpath. There are several significant climbs totalling approximately 1500ft. This is a social ride and male partners and friends are welcome to join us. The leaders are Karen and Dick Wolff.

Link to the Midweek Ride Route