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Sunday ride to Benson and Checkendon

Sunday, 12 November 2023 - 9:30am

A ride into the Chilterns to see some autumn colours (though may still be green you never know these days). Sorry, no gluten free food at the pub. There are some hilly sections on this ride.

Ride report

A grey autumn morning with some light rain, not as heavy as forecast. We took a fairly direct route to coffee at Benson, with a diverted route through Benson as the main road in the village was closed for remembrance day commemorations. The cafe at Benson was very quiet, and conversation ceased when Big Ben was heard striking 11.00. After coffee, we skirted the bottom of the Chilterns, pausing to let a convoy of tractors pass, before the steady climb up to Woodmancote. This route was a long gradual climb, with no steep sections making it one of the easiest ways to climb the Chilterns. The orangey-yellow leaves on the trees stood out well against the grey sky. Lunch was at the Black Horse in Checkendon, still its usual self with its usual array of customers. As we were early, we had the end room to ourselves, and were joined by the pub cat and the pub dog. The Black Horse often has someone turn up in an “interesting” (or old) form of transport. Today it was the tractor convoy we saw earlier in the morning, along with an old steam traction engine. After lunch we headed back to Oxford via Garsington.

The map is an embedded link from Ride with GPS. You can zoom in to see the route in as much detail as you like. For example, you can zoom in (using the + sign) to see exactly where the start is. If you'd like to see the distances, go to the Ride with GPS website by clicking on 'View Full Version' (top left of map).

Ride leaders

Role Name

Full ride leader

Leader back from coffee

(No leader)

Ride venues and times

Venue Time Notes


Broad Street, Oxford 9:30am

Please arrive 10 minutes before the start time (especially if you are new, so that we can say hello and sign you up).


Waterfront cafe, Benson 10:45am

For about half an hour.


The Black Horse, Checkendon 12:40pm

For about an hour.


Oxford area 3:45pm
All of the times (apart from the start time) are approximate only, as weather or punctures may affect them.

Ride options and attendance

Ride option Distance Pace Attendees

Full ride

78km 20kph

Half day ride

Ride to coffee and back again.

50km 20kph

The pace listed above is the average pace we do, so in general when cycling along the flat we will go a bit faster than the average pace. Please be aware of this if you are wondering whether you will be able to keep up on the ride.

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