Explore the scenic countryside north west of London, packed with colourful views
Date: Saturday 3rd December
Meeting Point: West Ruislip station (tube station ticket hall) from 10.00am. Moving off at 10.10 am.
Distance: 10.5 miles
Dropout Point: Harefield (4 miles) for buses to Northwood and Uxbridge
Pace: Moderate with various stops to view the scenery. But it will be cold, which might just quicken our pace !
Terrain: Fairly undulating without any steep bits. Be prepared for possible mud.
Rail Ticket: Day return to Seer Green. Can use Oyster card to get to West Ruislip (Zone 6) and buy a single from Seer Green to the Zone 6 boundary.
Getting There: Either catch the 9.46 am Gerrards Cross service from London Marylebone station,stopping at West Ruislip 10.07 am (also calling at Wembley Stadium 9.55 am)
Use the Central Line where West Ruislip is at the end of the line. This takes nearly 40 mins from Oxford Circus - tube trains run every 10 mins or so.
Getting Back: Aiming for the 4.06 pm service from Seer Green station to LondonMarylebone, arriving 4.39 pm. Hourly service !
Lunch: Either bring a packed lunch (always best to have some munchies as backup) or get a snack at a pub, where we'll stop for a drink and a warm up.
Route: Leaving West Ruislip station and the Metroland suburb, we'll follow the track into the countryside and up to New Year's Green. The tall hedgerows with several varieties are a far cry from when this area was scheduled for housing estates, only to be stopped back in the 1930's.
Other paths lead us into Bayhurst Wood, with radiant colours from the trees, picking up the Hillingdon Trail and across the fields to Harefield village. Downhill to the Grand Union Canal with sweeping views over the Colne valley, then following the border of Middlesex and Herts from Black Jack's Lock to Coppermill Lock, where the waters of the River Colne join the canal.
After traversing Pynesfield Lakes, its uphill through open fields to cross Old Shire Lane (and still marking the historic boundary between Herts and Bucks), picking up the South Bucks Way trail before downhill into Chalfont St Peter. Reckoned to be one of the largest villages in the country, this is often referred to as the "Gateway to the Chilterns" (maybe, even with festive lights...)
Back out into the countryside via Goldhill Common and Layter's Green, through the trees to the pretty village of Jordans, before ending at Seer Green station at dusk for the train back to London.