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Crummock Water, Mellbreak, Scale Force waterfall, Buttermere, Cumbria.
[16.8 km]  Wed 30 Aug 2017

OS Grid ref: NY 16255 19366
Lat/Long:
54.562564, -03.296626

This is my first walk using my new (second hand) car to get to the start. The weather was dull for my drive to Crummock Water and I parked in the same small car park I used earlier this month. I walked along the road to the north for a short way before leaving and going through a gate on the left and a steep path down to the Crummock Water shore.

The view across the north side of Crummock Water
 It was calm weather and a very pleasant walk along the shore then slightly up and through the trees. It was here in Feb 2012 I saw a young lady and her dog who turned out to be Caroline, a very good photographer. After passing a stone boat house I reached the north end of Crummock Water and turned left to follow the path by a couple of low dame and footbridges. It looks like the dams were to raise the water level about 1 metre.
The old pumping station
Further on I came to a stone building which the map calls a Pumping Station. A plaque on the side says:

Workington Corporation 1903 Robert Ernest Higton, Mayor John Milburn, Chairman of Water Committee John Warwick, Town Clerk Joseph Eden A.M.I.C.E. Engineer.

Pumping station plaque
Further along the shore the path turned to the right but I wandered out onto the open land ahead to search out the ruin shown on the map as ‘Peel’
The stone remains were unimpressive and described in a Historical Cumbria Book: “At the northern end of Crummock Water are the remains of a twelfth-century Pele tower. It is thought the site was possibly a medieval manor and a series of ditches and moats have been identified on the eastern side.”

Remains of the Peel / Pele

I returned to the path and followed a partly flooded path to the buildings of Lowpark. I walked through a gate and up a green track through the trees. I walked though the wonderfully names Flass Wood to the indistinct branch path heading up the steep north climb of Mellbreak. After leaving the steep grassy sloped I reached the loose and much steeper slope. About 2/3 up there is a lovely flat grassy area with superb views if the weather is kind.

Looking to Loweswater from
the climb of Mellbreak

The path was now much easier up to the low cairn on the south summit of Mellbreak. There are 2 summits about 1km apart and this is the lower, just, at 509m. In the distance I could see the higher 512m summit though it looked lower. The weather had improved and a few patches of sunshine were lighting the fells. I looked for somewhere out of the wind to eat my sandwiches. The temperature had only dropped to 10decC but it felt chilly in the wind.

Looking back down to the site of the Pele

Looking across Crummock Water to Buttermere

Mellbreak north summit looking to Loweswater

I then continued south towards the next summit but before reaching it turned west to find and old campsite Id used in 2004. If I’d camped there today I’d have found somewhere with a better view. I followed the contour to re-join the descent path towards Black Beck. A young lady runner overtook me and descended to the lower path.

Site of my old camp in 2004

Looking across Crummock Water and Buttermere
As I reached the gate she was walking back up the hill and said she’d dropped her headphones somewhere and was returning to try and find them. I continued down to the beck then steeply up the other side to join the main path towards Scale Force waterfall. The track was very rough and collapsed in places. The waterfall is a tourist attraction and most people walk there from Buttermere. There were several people there and I waited until they’d cleared the area before taking a few photos. The weather was now warm and sunny and as I continued down the path I met a couple of Photographers on their way up. They’d driven up from Bolton.
Lower part of
Scale Force Waterfall

Buttermere
 We chatted for a while then continued. Further down the path split and I made the mistake of the taking the higher route and finished wading through impenetrable ferns so had to wade my way down through them to reach the lower path. The path continued rough and wet almost to the main Buttermere path. There were now lots of people about and I went through the gate to walk along the shore of Buttermere before taking the path across the fields back into Buttermere village. The walk back along the road was difficult in places due to the narrow road, no footpath and lots of traffic.
Buttermere