Swan’s Way – Day 5

Another very grey day to start with, but it gradually brightened up and by lunchtime it was nice and sunny. But it also became quite windy and I seemed to be walking into the wind all the way back to my car. First time for a very long time that I can remember being aware of walking against a strong wind.

I parked in a layby near Waddesdon, and had to go about a third of a mile to a road junction to pick up the route of Swan’s Way. I then had to go about three quarters of a mile along another road to reach where I finished my last walk, and then of course had to turn round and walk back the same way – I was glad to get this road walking over and done with!

I followed a path round two sides of  a very large ploughed field and then went up Waddesdon Hill, spotting a nearby Buzzard as I did so. Like Quainton Hill on the last walk, Waddesdon Hill isn’t very high, but has some quite extensive views. I could see northwards back to Quainton and Quainton Hill, while to the south I could see the line of the Chiltern Hills extending from Dunstable Downs to near Stokenchurch.

The next half-mile or so I’d walked before on the Aylesbury Ring, North Bucks Way and Bernwood Jubilee Way, but I then followed a slightly different route through Eythrope Park (which gave me a chance to see the house for the first time). I passed the waymark post that shows that no less than six long-distance routes go through here, then crossed the bridge over the river Thame and followed the drive from the estate to the village of Stone.

There was now a fairly lengthy road walk through Stone. Just before I turned off the road, I got a good close-up view of a Red Kite, the first I’ve seen for a while. I now followed  a bridleway round various field ages, seeing another Kite, then crossed a large sheep pasture to reach a farm. More field-side bridleways took me to a path junction about half a mile from the village of Kimble Wick, where I turned and started to make my way back to the car.

This was a nice walk, despite the large amount of road walking. Any walk where I see a Red Kite is a good walk as far as I’m concerned! (I saw another one close-up in Eythrope Park on the way back). It was also nice to be walking in bright sunshine again, as the last few walks have generally been on grey and gloomy days.

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