BB0614  High Street Racecourse

Thursday 8th June 2006

Stan's doing the report I was just the stand in photographer - Pics attached to prove we dunnit. The day was scorching hot and I lost my bloody sunglasses cooling my face in a stream.

Looking at High Street from the Thornthwaite Beacon I've gathered enough confidence to commit myself to the marathon on the 29th.  I just need a  thicker pair of socks to fit my new oversize boots!!

Tony, 8th June 2006


Don, our usual scribe, decided a trip to Eton was called for, hence this report comes from my fair hand as Bryan forcefully pointed out it was my turn.

The day was the hottest of the year so far as Bryan, Tony & I set off from Hartsop up the track to Hayeswater.   Shorts were the order of the day together with lightweight boots, which in Tony's case were ostentatiously brand new Brashers.   These proved problematic as the day wore on as various scientific measuring exercises (eg taking out the insole and measuring Tony's foot against it), proved them to be between a half and one size too big.   However, Tony was totally unfazed and announced that, if necessary, he would simply add a third pair of socks to the 2 pair he was already wearing.   His logic being that, what the hell, when they're factory shop prices to start with and you get another 30% off through a contact what does it matter what size they are?

The first objective was Grey Crag (needed by Bryan for his Wainwright list), and as we neared Hayeswater we struck off to the right up the steep tussock strewn hillside.  I was in the process of moaning about Bryan having a thing about steep grassy hillsides when we accidentally came upon the very pleasant and gradual path leading up the ridge from Hartsop.    The top at 2296' was quickly reached and elevenses were taken, but unfortunately the heat of the day had brought ought flying ants so we quickly set off for Thornthwaite Beacon.   I remember reading that Wainwright had a frightening experience with flying ants - having reached a summit he couldn't get near the cairn as it was surrounded by swooping swifts, which brought  to mind the 'Birds', but it turned out they were feeding on flying ants!

It is only a short walk to Thornthwaite Beacon but Tony was already complaining, despite the elevenses stop, that it was past noon and therefore lunchtime.   After a team photo call, carrot and stick was necessary and I explained that I really needed to get to High Street to walk off my indigestion from elevenses, but if Tony could get to Mardale Ill Bell quickly I'd compromise on that.  

Thornthwaite Beacon

Racecourse Hill

As we trudged up Racecourse Hill we discussed the state of the path - now a rocky double width road - and lamented the demise of the pleasant grassy path it was only 20 or so years ago.   Tony queried if this was the slope where horseracing once took place, when as if by magic, 4 wild black fell ponies appeared in the distance to the side of High Street.   The conclusion voiced that they might be descended from Roman racing stock is a good tourist tale but unfortunately pushing the truth a bit too far.

Lunch was taken at Mardale Ill Bell (another tick for Bryan), with Bryan offering freshly brewed tea from his camping stove to anyone who would let him have some water.   Visibility was by now almost perfect as the sun had burnt off the early morning haze giving excellent views all-round.

As we passed the top of High Street the 4 fell ponies came into view again and we stopped to look at their manes and tails which almost reached the ground.   We expected them to be nervous and to trot off but either past titbits from walkers or the smell of apples in my rucksack was too much and they all started to move towards us - time to put the boots in gear and head off down the Roman Road towards the Knott.   Tony was so impressed he announced  he was definitely in for the High Street trip and started to take multiple photos of the route and the surrounding fells, he was even more impressed when Bryan pointed out Tony's Cannon had a stitch facility and that all the photos could be combined into one. 

As we left the Knott for Hayeswater the sun was scorching so it was a quick dash down to Hayeswater Gill for a cooling splash.   This prompted Tony to enquire whether anyone fancied a shandy whereupon no time was wasted getting back to the car and the Brotherswater Inn.  I ordered the drinks from a very pleasant girl from Cape Town and was fumbling for the change when Tony's glass slammed empty on the counter and he asked 'fancy another'!  Well that's a double first: first time anyone's drunk a drink I've bought before I've managed to pay for it, and first time anyone's asked if I want another before I've even got hold of my glass.  Those who've not had the pleasure of Tony's considerable company be warned.

Another super day with perfect weather, excellent views and full of good company and humour. 

Stan, Thursday 8th June 2006


7.7 miles

Height climbed:
2,497 feet

Map reference:
See Map


Grey Crag, Thornthwaite Crag, Mardale Ill Bell, High Street



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Slipper Strolls:



  • BB0631  Coppermines
  • BB0630  Relocation, Relocation, Relocation
  • BB0629  Stone Arthur and a Mystery Plume
  • BB0628  Knocking off Wainwrights.  Oh! Plus Skiddaw!
  • BB0627  Blencathra and the Mungrisdale Round
  • BB0626  The Deepdale Round
  • BB0625  Les Garçons de la Botte
  • BB0624  The Crookdale Horseshoe and then some
  • BB0623  Selside Pike revisited
  • BB0622  Round the Dunny!
  • BB0621  The Malham Experience
  • BB0620  Newlands Horseshoe
  • BB0619  Old Man Succumbs!
  • BB0618  Kentmere Horseshoe
  • BB0617 QH2QH High Street (the length thereof)
  • BB0616 Thornthwaite Beacon
  • BB0615  Fairfield Horseshoe
  • BB0614  High Street Racecourse
  • BB0613 The Coledale Round
  • BB0612  Well, Well, Well, Wansfell and Troutbeck Tongue      
  • BB0611  Carlin Gill
  • BB0610  Whitbarrow, Yewbarrow and a history lesson
  • BB0609  Clough Head and Great Dodd
  • BB0608  The Corpse Road and beyond
  • BB0607  Grim Fell!
  • BB0606  A Bit on the Side.....
  • BB0605  Angle Tarn with Surprises! 
  • BB0604  Hart Cragg via Dovedale
  • BB0603  Islands in the Sky with Brocken Spectres
    (or High Street via Gardiner's Grind)
  • BB0602  Holme Fell, Black Fell and Electric  Eyes
  • BB0601  Ingleborough
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