Canoe Days Out

Oxfordshire - River Thames - Shifford Lock to Eynsham Lock

This page was submitted by Keith Day (E-mail this submitter)
How to get there - We had traveled via the river and camped the previous night at Shifford Lock. If you are not doing this the nearest suitable start point would be Newbridge. Newbridge is on the A415 about 5 miles south-east of Witney.

For those with SatNav the postcode is OX29 7QD.

Get a map with driving directions to start or end (enter the postcode of your starting point at A)

Suggested Launch Site - Launch afrom the camping orchard into the weir stream and paddle back through the lock.

General Description - This trip is part of a four day trip from Cricklade to Sandford (south of Oxford) with overnight camping. Day1 of this trip is here , day2 here and day4 here.

The trip is through the delightful Oxford countryside. (See the photo album.)

An aside is the local practice of naming fording places accordingto the depth of the water. At Oxford it was deep enough for an Ox to cross, at Sineford a pig could cross and at Shifford deep enough for a sheep.

Camping at Eynsham Lock gives the opportunity for a half mile walk to the Talbot pub. The lock-keeper couldn't be more helpful even allowing fires in the specially prepared firepits he has created. Our lunchtime stop was the Ferry Inn at Bablock Hythe.

Comments on this trip

Bruce Roberts
20 Sep 2011
Camped at Eynsham Lock in September. Fabulous spot camping between the lock and the weir. Really helpful lock keeper. Pub a short walk down the road. Lots of birds en route including kingfishers.

04 Sep 2009
Hi,I did this trip at the beginning of September last year, I think we got in where you describe, we were hoping to get in on the other side of the main road bridge in the road named North Wall but the river was too high to get under the road bridge.My point in writing is to mention the pitfalls of doing this at high water levels. First, just a few yards down from the get in point, the river sweeps around to the left sharply, we were caught unaware by the strong current, and got swept into a tree - result a capsize within a minute of launching. Eventually we managed to haul ourselves and the boat out, but the current was very strong, initially we were just concerned about keep our heads above water and not being dragged under the boat into the tree and roots. The boat had got stuck sideways across the river and we were able to pull ourselves along the boat and out on the right hand bank, eventually draining the canoe and pulling it out, luckily all our kit was securely tied down and in waterproof bags, the only casualty was my Garmin GPS, although it was tied in to the boat it must have got caught on one of the tree roots, when we got the boat out the lanyard was still attached, but no GPA on the end - so if you see Green Garmin bobbing about its mine!Secondly, a bit further down there is bowed footbridge, this was impassable due to the high water, it was quite difficult to portage around due to the barbed wire of the surrounding fields, but we managed to lift the loaded canoe over and drag it about 50 yards to a suitable get in point.The rest of the trip was good fun, with the locks all on red boards, we passed through all the locks very quickly, with very ( about 4) motor boats on the river we have the river and locks to ourselves. First stopping at Pink Hill lock for an overnight camp on Friday night, and secondly at Wallingford on Saturday night.We finished at Tilehurst, where we live, total trip time, just less than 48 hours.

Anne Slater
18 Aug 2008
Thanks for really useful information. I had a frustrating time trying to plan a trip using the thames waterways website. You have given me all the info I need for a canoe and camping trip on the Thames


The Talbot Inn, Eynsham
Thames Conditions

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