17th April 2011

Mellbreak and Hen Comb


Walk Overview
Time 09.30 to 13.30
Duration 4 hr
Distance 6.1 mile
Ascent 2300 ft
Walking with On my own
Loweswater - Kirkgate Farm - White Crag - Mellbreak - Mosedale - Mosedale Beck - Hen Comb - Little Dodd - Sheepfold - Mosedale Beck - Kirkgate Farm - Loweswater
Fells visited
Directory places visited

Starting Point Information Centre
Parking spaces, Loweswater

With room for only half a dozen cars or so the chances are that you'll find this parking area full. There is another car park found a little way past The Kirkstile Inn, but this one is even smaller. Should you be lucky enough to get parked however, you'll find this a truly beautiful area of the Lake District. Crummock Water and Loweswater are both within easy reach and of course there's Mellbreak, towering above this end of Lorton Vale.


Route Map

Considering I only live about 20 minutes up the road it seems a shame that it's been almost 2 years since I walked on Mellbreak. So, as seen as though I didn't have a lot time, it seemed a good idea come here today.

Whiteside, Grasmoor and Whiteless Pike.

From Kirkgate Farm I followed this lonnin (country lane) into the trees and onto the bottom of Mellbreak.

A view back over the trees showing Loweswater, Darling Fell and Low Fell.

The silence of walking up the grassy bottom of the fell soon gave way to the chink-chink of the loose scree under foot. There was also a slight breeze which was cooling things down a little as I gained height . Life has it's compensations however, and along with the height came the views.

This picture of Whiteside, Hopegill Head and Grasmoor was certainly taken from a nice airy spot, but not quite as exposed at the picture may hint at.

One of the lesser known of Lakelands surprise views. Unlike this one, the most well known of them is actually called Surprise View; the one along the road to Watandlath. In my opinion this spot deserves to be called 'Surprise View' more than the other.

Looking across to the slightly higher southern end of Melbreak.

I'm at the higher end of the fell now, and although the tops of the fells are just about the same as the previous picture I can now see the bottom of them as well. There's also a full view of Buttermere from here.

Hen Comb and Mosedale brightened up a little with some sunshine. Great Borne is in the shade behind.

Well that's one steep bit done, now I need to get onto the opposite side of the valley and than start walking up Hencomb.

Mosedale and its holly tree. I believe this is the only 'single tree' marked on maps of the Lake District.

That's where I'm heading next. I followed the two people you can see in the picture, crossed the beck and then headed up beside the fence onto the skyline.

Crossing Mosedale Beck.

There was good cause to keep stopping to catch my breath on the walk up here. On this occasion I took a picture looking towards the broader end of Mosedale and Red Pike, , , , ,

, , , , this time I was looking in the other direction towards Loweswater and Low Fell.


Hen Comb summit.
The higher fells behind the cairn are Red Pike and the High Stile ridge. The lake is Buttermere and the distinctly shaped fell behind the lake is Fleetwith Pike.

Further round and Gavel Fell, Blake Fell and Carling Knott come into view.

Still further round, and you have Loweswater, Fellbarrow and Low Fell in view.

Looking back up the ridge.

Loweswater, Fellbarrow, Low Fell and Lorton Vale.

I spy a good place for a sit down and a bite to eat.

A short walk alongside Mosedale Beck would take me to the stepping stones. I could have crossed the beck somewhere else but didn't see the point risking wet feet.

The stepping stones.


Just as forecast, the day was brightening up and warming up nicely. I just wish I could have taken advantage and walked this afternoon instead of in the morning. Unfortunately I was restricted because we had visitors coming and even more unfortunate, I was late getting back to see them.


David Hall -
Lake District Walks