A leisurely 23-mile lap via Teddington

Conditions were much nicer for cycling today. Still a bit gusty, but nowhere near as bad as yesterday.

I had no real plan to cycle to Teddington, but by the time I got to Ham House, where I usually turn inland and make for Richmond Park, I thought I'd keep following the river. The tow path along here is quite narrow in places, but I love the views across the water to the houses on the other side.

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The surface was considerably drier than the last time I cycled this particular stretch of the tow path, which was on March 2. Back then it was just one giant mud bath and I had to stop a couple of times to free my wheels from mud-clogged mud guards!

Today, it was an easy two-mile stretch, and before I knew it I had arrived at Teddington, just in time to see several canoes and a pleasure boat go through the lock.

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Poor chaps had quite a crowd of onlookers watching, including one gung-ho photographer (not me) with a giant lens who kept asking them to smile, and a group of school children on an outing. Fortunately, the canoeists were good sports and were prepared to pose — and wave.

From there on, I followed the signs for National Cycle Route 4 towards Richmond Park, via Ham. Once through Ham Gate I turned left and followed a shared cycle/pedestrian path to Petersham Pedestrian Gate. However, when I saw that I'd have to cycle on the road outside of the park, up the very steep Star and Garter Hill, I had second thoughts, so turned around, went back to Ham Gate, then proceeded to cut right through the middle of the park via National Cycle Route 4. 

Then it was onwards to Roehampton Gate, via Sheen Gate (are you following all these gates?), and back home — feeling exhausted and hungry! It was a great cycle though, and so nice to be out and about after what feels like a week of being trapped indoors.

Total distance: 23.11miles (38.18km) | Ride time: 2hr 08min and 32sec | Average speed: 10.7mph | Top speed: 22mph

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