Running for nearly 90 miles across southern England, the Ridgeway National Trail is one of our most ancient cross-county routes. Following the crest of a sequence of well-defined chalk escarpments - the Marlborough Downs, the Berkshire or White Horse Downs and the Chilterns - the Ridgeway leads from Overton Hill near the Neolithic stone circle at Avebury to imposing Ivinghoe Beacon close to Dunstable, at its half-way point crossing the River Thames at Streatley. Used for centuries as a trade route, a pathway for the armies of Saxon and Dane, a cattle drove and a local cart track, the Ridgeway is today an official National Trail, designated in 1973 by the Countryside Commission. West of the Thames the route is a continuous green road, while the eastern, typically-wooded Chiltern section is mostly footpaths. In its entirety the Ridgeway is a notable backpacking expedition. This book follows the route as it traverses the ever-changing downland, shares the frequent spectacular views to capture the atmosphere of this special cross section of England. It should fascinate and enthuse all those who use the Ridgeway be they Sunday afternoon strollers, cross-country cyclists, equestrians or hardy backpackers.