Alan and I did a rather short walk at Ivinghoe Beacon. It is the end point of The Ridgeway and the beginning of the Icknield Way (if I recall correctly). My pictures do not do justice to the steepness of the hills, but they are short lived. I am currently in terrible shape. Between joint issues and Covid lockdown my fitness has gone from not bad for my size to struggling up the hill. I did make it up both hills in my walk and have lived to tell the tale so know that this is very doable even if you are unfit or have small kids.
We parked up at the nearest carpark to the Beacon. It was busy…. like I wish I had taken a mask with me busy, but it was open air and we, like everyone else, just tried to stay back away from others. We just followed at a reasonable distance behind those ahead of us. It was less hike like and more follow the leader, but it was outside, and it was not in Milton Keynes and I really did just need to get out of town.
The people ahead of us were a family with two kids and honestly, I liked their pace and was happy to stay behind them, but they wanted to let people pass so I just got out of there way. This was just at the bottom of the hill leading to the beacon. The route was steep, and I did have to stop and just breath once or twice, but I made it up and the above picture is my proof.
This is a view down about ¾ of the first hill and the carpark was in the far top, left corner of this picture. I did however not go back down that way so a different hill yet to come. Alan decided to get a picture of me at the trip point that was next to the Ridgeway marker. There really were some lovely views from up there. Off to the right of this location you could see the Whipsnade Lion which you can just see in one of the pictures below.
Above you can see the Lion and the path leading away from the beacon. I just thought the path was lovely the way it follows the ridge toward Dunstable. I think but am not sure that this is the beginnings of the Icknield Way but feel free to correct me in the comments.
The next picture shows a lovely view of the hill we had to climb back up to get to the car. That hill was so steep. I think I had to stop and rest 4 or even 5 times. I was just not built for hills at all. Shockingly poor fitness. Just think, nine months ago I was running a half marathon and now getting up a hill at the end of a two mile walk feels like Everest.
This next one is a bit more of an up-close view of the hill.
And another from about halfway up that last hill looking back down. I swear that hill seemed to go on forever. There must have been invisible builders adding hill as we went.
Like I mentioned before…. this was just a 2 mile walk. That isn’t my current limit by any means, but I am working my fitness back up slowly. Next week the plan is a 4.5 mile walk around Aldbury. That one is an old Country Walking or maybe Countryfile walk that we have collected over the years. I will continue to take pictures and share them in posts on Sundays.
Do you like walking? Are hills your jam or like me the bane of your existence? Love to hear from you in the comments.