As I don't have any family planning to stay with me over Christmas this year, this means that right after Christmas Day I can get away. I've thought about heading overseas for a week but as I'm spending rather a lot on my van conversion at the moment and as I only came back from Oman a couple of weeks ago, I've decided to spend the time catching up with friends in the UK and trying to walk a bit more of the Thames Path.
Last time I walked the Thames Path (which was also at New Year) I finished in Staines. Not the most salubrious of places. I've been told by a local that they're thinking of re-naming it Staines upon Thames to make it sound a bit more upmarket. I think St. Aines would sound even posher, but I'm not sure who to forward my suggestion to officially. And whatever it's called it's going to take a bit more than a name change to improve its image.
But I digress. Last year I finished in Staines and so that is where I need to start from this year. If I can get three days' walking in, I should be able to make it to Marlow. On day 1 I should get as far as Windsor; day 2 should get me to Maidenhead; and then if I have chance to do a day 3 I'll make it to Marlow. As usual at this time of year daylight hours will seriously impact on how far I can walk. Even with a headtorch I wouldn't want to be walking along lonely riverside paths in the dark.
I spent a couple hours in the week researching parking and trains and it all seems very easy. I've found relatively cheap parking in Windsor, Maidenhead and Marlow and good train connections back to my starting point each day. Hopefully the traffic won't be too heavy as it's just after New Year and schools won't be back in. Big time-eating traffic delays at the start of each day would mean me having to re-assess my plans for that day.
So, all I need to know now is what's the weather going to be like?