The Golden Mile

Post 27: 31 March 1991: Day 3 – Longthwaite Youth Hostel (Borrowdale) to Grasmere Youth Hostel (Tarn How) – 10 miles

It was with great relief that I awoke in the morning knowing that we only had 10 miles to walk today rather than the 17¾ miles to Patterdale that Wainwright recommends. After the previous two days exertions my legs and feet were aching, but we were able to have a slow start leaving the hostel at 10.30am; well it was a Sunday. Wainwright describes Borrowdale as the fairest of the Lake District valleys and I have to agree; unfortunately on this day it was covered in mist. However, with my new determination to master the skills of navigation we made good progress ascending alongside Stonethwaite Beck, up Greenup Gill, past Eagle Crag, then to the summit of the pass, Greenup Edge.

Lake District June 2014_2120
Borrowdale, described by Wainwright as the Golden Mile, viewed from Castle Crag on a better day. Our route passed Eagle Crag, which can be seen in the distance slightly left of middle and then headed over the ridge in the far distance.

To find our way down to Far Easedale in the thick mist I had to use my compass and, to my surprise, we actually followed the correct route. As if to pat us on the back, the mist cleared, the sun came out and, on entering Grasmere, flowers bloomed. We sat outside the hostel waiting for it to open, bathing our battered feet in the sun.

The big 50_6753_edited-1
Archie writing his last will and testament and cooling off his feet as we wait for Longthwaite Youth Hostel to open.

Writing a postcard home I said, ‘This is a great experience, if I survive it!’

Top walker’s tip – report in regularly to your wife and family and play the sympathy card by letting them know how much you are suffering.


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