Mortimer to Aldermaston and Theale walk
Gentle. A stream, Roman Calleva, and an optional canal side extension.
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And so to the final walk of the series in Book 1, and what a walk this Berks/Hants 13 miler turned out to be! It has now superseded previous contenders as the wettest walk this walker has done to date!
The writing was on the wall shortly after leaving Mortimer station and crossing Foundry Brook; further evidence then came to light walking alongside the meadows of the brook. Then, there was hope as the walker ascended away from the brook towards the amphitheatre and former Roman town of Calleva Atrebatum, and so on to lunch at Silchester.
Thereafter, there was some further respite from the wet stuff with a pleasant walk through a pine forest, but, then, upon reaching the gorse and birch of Padworth Common, the warning signs of what was to follow were evident. Shortly after passing Padworth Church, and looking out over the terrain ahead around Aldermaston Wharf, it was clear that the route was impassible due to flooding. Consequently, a short section of the walk, including the Kennet Weir and the Alder Bridge centre couldn't be filmed.
Instead, this walk resumes at the church and on through the grounds of Padworth College to Lodge Farm. Shortly after a brief road walk, the walker rejoins the canalside extension to Theale for the very wet finale!
A very pleasant and varied walk, despite the dampness underfoot. The section of road walking in the middle should be re-routed, but otherwise a delightful day out!