King Alfred Way

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  • Ridgeway and South Downs Way are hard but it gets easier around Reading and over the Salisbury Plain

  • Yeh that was good hard fun. As Fred says - probably better / more enjoyable with MTB tyres / sus.

    Can also fully endorse Piecaramba for all your pre-post ride pie needs.


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  • lovely photo but this hill is fucking horrid

  • Many swearwords up that bugger.

  • Nice pics! How long did it take you?

  • Also, which way round did you go, and could it be done the other way?

  • 2x half days and one proper full day riding. But I was in no rush and stopped loads for photos and ice cream and views. Think I averaged 10 mph.

  • Clockwise. It could easily be done the other way around. I met some blokes doing a write up for the RSF and they started from Reading. So up to you really.

  • Excellent, that's exactly how I'm planning to do it.

  • Is that your fatbike in the final picture? Top notch photo, that god-ray is a corker

  • I can only fit in 200km of this ride, can you suggest which part of the route was nicest?

    Edit: Thinking Winchester to Reading - I'll be on a cross bike and the South Downs sounds bumpy.

  • Yeh fat bike. Bit overkill for the route (although I did take a 1km sand diversion) and heavy but I just love riding it and it fits me really well. Thanks!

  • If I where you then i'd probably do Avebury (the start of the ridegeway) > South Downs.
    The bit from Reading is probably most cross bike friendly. But whatever bike you have it will suck at some point.

  • another question for you Thrasher - did you wildcamp? if so, roughly where?

  • Really up for this. Going to have to be next summer, need to buy and MTB first.

  • Lovely time you chose @Thrasher!

  • Just finished it having done it clockwise. Some thoughts:

    Its hard work but v rewarding
    Salisbury Plains section out to Winchester is the part that most felt like a slog with scenery much better on the Ridgeline and South Downs. It might even be worth doing the road option rather than off road
    GPS directions at one point followed exactly the South Downs walking route and took me over a number of stiles...will look to pull out where but could easily be gone around.
    There isnt a lot of food and drink options on the route so take advantage of them when theyre available (if you dont want to divert too much)
    I was on 38c tubeless tyres and wouldnt really want to do it on something narrower particularly when its wet. Speaking of which, a large proportion of the route is flinty and could be a PITA (I had one puncture which some additional sealant took care of)
    Id imagine without a GPS device (I used smartphone with Komoot and a couple of battery packs), youre going to be taking it a lot easier with all the twists and turns
    Wild camping wasnt too much of a problem. Rode slow but steady from 730-6 and then looked out for sites
    After the solitude of the countryside, riding through the middle of Reading comes as a shock
    Met a few people on the route doing it, pretty much even split of wild campers, campsiters and credit card tourers
    Hi to forum person I met...hope your ride goes well

  • Good write up, thanks!

    riding through the middle of Reading comes as a shock

    My plan of riding anticlockwise from Farnham seems even better now.

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King Alfred Way

Posted by Avatar for Thrasher @Thrasher

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