Pete's Walks - Bernwood Jubilee Way

Post-walk comments

I can’t say that I enjoyed walking the Bernwood Jubilee Way as much as other walks I have done, but that is almost entirely due to the muddy conditions when I walked it. I now realise how fortunate I was last winter, which was unusually dry. Some of my walks on the Bernwood Jubilee Way took almost an hour longer than they would normally do, simply because of the mud. It is very tiring on the legs when you continually have to pull them out of clinging mud, and tiring on the mind when you have to check where you are putting your feet at every step. Nevertheless I did enjoy the Bernwood Jubilee Way, but I would recommend walking it in late Spring or early Summer, because of the drier conditions and because the wildflowers and butterflies described so well in the guide book would then be at their best.

Picture omitted

Quainton (Day 5)

I found the first section from Brill to Marsh Gibbon to be a bit tedious, because it was very flat and mainly through sheep pastures with very little variety. After that though, the walk was fine – there were few hills, but it was undulating rather than flat (until I reached the Thame valley) and there was a reasonable variety of fields, woodland and small villages. Even the flat sections along the Thame and along Padbury Brook were enjoyable. There was a lot of historic interest along the route, much of it connected to the ancient hunting forest. In particular I was quite fascinated by the traces of Ridge and Furrow, although I can understand other people not being impressed by bumps and hollows in the ground! The route passed through many attractive and historic villages, such as Brill, Quainton and Nether Winchendon – the latter was one of the most interesting places I have been through on any of my walks. There was plenty of wildlife to be seen too – Red Kites, Buzzards, Fallow Deer, Muntjac Deer, Hares.

Picture omitted

River Thame (Day 5)

I found the guide book to be very frustrating. It is ridiculous that it only covers half the actual route of the Bernwood Jubilee Way, and that it is quite arbitrary as to whether it describes sections of the route in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction. However, for the sections of the route that it does cover, it is extremely good on local history and wildlife, especially on wildflowers. I think I may well revisit some parts of the route in the summer months to see some of the wildflowers it describes. To be fair to the guide book, the route is very well waymarked (with a few odd exceptions, such as through Buckingham and in Shabbington Wood) so I didn’t actually have too many problems following the Bernwood Jubilee Way.