Date & Time: Wednesday 14th March 2007. 11 am start.

Location of start : The red phone box, Loweswater, Cumbria Uk. ( NY 143 211 )

Places visited : Kirkgate Farm. Mellbreak, Mosedale, Hen Comb, back via the Kirkstile.

Walk details : 5.9 mls, 2550 ft of ascent, about 5 hours.

Walked with : John Paterson and Polly, Ann and our dogs, Harry and Bethan.

Weather : A reasonably sunny day but with clouds touching the high fells. A strong, cool, westerly breeze.

Our first fell, but not our target . . . Mellbreak from Kirkhead.


John appeared at our door about ten o'clock, pretending to be sociable, but in fact desperately in need of a coffee as he had driven over from the east coast that morning. For his efforts, and admiration for him getting up and driving over a hundred miles before starting start his walk, he actually earned himself a second breakfast !

Polly has completed 199 Wainwrights Fells so far, and Hen comb was calling out to be climbed. As it was local, and as we hadn't decided where we were climbing today, we quickly packed our gear and joined John and Polly on this delightful walk over the Loweswater Fells.

First was Mellbreak, via the bridle way past Kirkgate Farm.

The cows, still wintering in the barns, rather than out in the fields.
Kirkgate is built in classic whitewashed Lakeland Stone.
The main arch to the front door and courtyard
Two of Chris's dogs watching us pass (see nose in the picture opposite)
Leaving the valley trackway, we climb up towards Mellbreak
Though the woods now and up towards the start of the crags.

As we climbed, the Pub, Church and houses of Loweswater and the Lorton Valley became visible above the trees.

Climbing high above Low Park,
and an aeriel view of the High Park farmhouse too.

John, deep in conversation,

tells of his morning travels

and of his new monocular viewing scope.


( To you and I that's a binocular with only one side )


In nautical terms it would be called a telescope.


Is this supposed to make things bigger. Oh! hold on, I've got it the wrong way round.

On the top we were recognised by a lady called June, a keen fellwalker and new resident of Cumbria, having recently moved over from the east coast.

I say "we" were recognised, but in fact it was the two dogs who were identified first . . . such is life.

Hi June - great to meet you.

Having visited Mellbreak several times we took a path off to the left for a change, and ended up towards the Buttermere Valley side of the fell.

It was slightly drier than the western path, but the heather was higher and the path rather non-existent.

Clear weather but a touch of local cloud on Grasmoor.

Hopegill Head is the higher peak in the background at the top of Gasgale Valley.

John and Polly were first to Mellbreak's southern (and marginally higher) summit

First points of the day as Polly hasn't reached this summit before. Her tally is now 199.

Our next summit was Hen Comb, the next fell to the west. The flat boggy ground at the head of Mosedale fills the foreground in front of Great Borne.

A rapid descent to the valley without a path wasn't a great problem.

Time to enjoy a light lunch and to ponder on the driest route across Mosedale. There is, however, a bridge in the bend of the river directly ahead

and a route up and through Thring Crags and find the feint sheep track diagonally up to the top right (of the picture) would seem the easiest ascent.

Ann crossed the old fence that separated this rather wet pasture.

John wonders why Harry doesn't use the bridge
After the crags we climbed up across the open fell.

An aside . . . .

At the bridge John pointed out a pile of . . . well a pile !

We were reliably informed that this was a fox dropping. The evidence for this was the pointed nature of one end of the excrement. He also mentioned he could identify Otter spraints and Owl pellets too.

John in fact talked cr*p for several minutes !

Sorry John ..... :o)

But I digress . . . .

This was Polly's day and her choice of mountain.

Summit photo therefore of Hen Comb, Polly's 200th Wainwright Fell.

The wind on both the summit of Mellbreak and Hen Comb was considerably stronger and colder than in the valley.

This meant we were always adding and removing clothing layers, and accounts for Bethan's fine impersonation here of an airplane.

Downhill all the way now as we walk the ridge of Hen Comb back towards Loweswater.

Ann carefully crossing Mosedale Beck.
Then it was just a short walk back down to our cottage ahead.


- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with a Canon G7 Digital camera.

Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.

This site best viewed with . . . plans for twelve more fells for Polly before Easter Tuesday.

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Previous walk - 12th March 2007 Barf and Lords Seat through the trees

A previous time up here - 19th April 2006 Hen Comb and the lead mines with Jo

Previous walk - 20th March 2007 Catbells, and another visit to the vet !