27th August 2009

Mellbreak and Hen Comb from Buttermere


Walk Overview
Time 09.00 to 14.45
Duration 5 hr 45 min
Distance 8.7 mile
Ascent 2500 ft
Walking with Andrew Leaney
Buttermere - Scale Bridge - Scale Beck - Mellbreak - Mosedale Holly Tree - Mosedale Beck - Hen Comb - Mosedale - Scale Force - Buttermere (lake) - Buttermere (village)
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Buttermere Village

There are a few different options for parking in Buttermere. A couple of decent sized car parks the road side leading up past the church onto Newlands pass and the sneaky couple of spaces next to the bridge. Despite these options and the village being so small they all fill up pretty quickly.

For such a small village there are a couple of hotels / pubs, public toilets and a couple of tearooms, one of which sells the best ice cream you could ever hope to find.


Route Map

It was scene of peace, quiet and calm as we left Buttermere this morning. Although I'm sure this wouldn't have lasted very long, in the time it took us to get ready and start walking about half a dozen cars had already turned up, and when we got back at the end of the walk it was packed with people, cars and even a mini bus or two.

There were a few areas of wet ground for us to walk through today and this flatish ground near Crummock Water was the first. After a little while, it becomes obvious that trying to avoid the wetter sections is a waste of time and the best thing is to just get on with it and walk through.

A nice view across Crummock Water to Rannerdale Knotts, and the Grasmoor Fells.


I think this bridge has definitely seen better days.

Looking into the southern end of Mosedale. The small pointed fell in the centre of the photo is Floutern Cop.

The first steep section of the day took us onto Mellbreak where the views down to Crummock Water and Buttermere are fantastic.

Mellbreak summit.

I can't decide if this is early or not, but all of a sudden the areas of heather are looking much more purple.


Under the Mosedale Holly Tree.

I expected this to be the wettest part of the walk today, but it wasn't too bad to be honest.

Generally I don't mind crossing becks like this, if there are at least a few rocks to step on or if it's possible to jump over the deeper sections. Today though, this was just a bit too deep and fast flowing after all the rain we've had recently. So the sensible thing was to , , , , ,

, , , , use the bridge found a little way up stream.

Looking through Mosedale from the steep off path climb up to Hen Comb.

And from higher up, a view down to the other end of Mosedale.

Loweswater seen from Hem Comb summit.

We were back down to Mosedale now, and ready to begin the long walk across the southern end of the valley towards Scale Force.

Now that's what I call a big sponge.

As we left the confines of Mosedale, Crummock Water was in sight once again, along with Grasmoor, Whiteless Pike, Rannerdale Knotts and Robinson.

Scale Force waterfall.

And looking away from the waterfalls.

We opted to take the slightly longer route back to Buttermere, and by some strange coincidence we just happened to pass by the tea shop that sells the nice ice cream. Who would have thought marmalade flavour ice cream would taste so good. (thought for the day - - - Don't knock it until you've tried it)

David Hall -
Lake District Walks