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Date & start time: Wednesday 28th January 2009. 10.45 am start.

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

Places visited : Kirkstile, Kirgate, the northern top and back via Mellbreak's side traverse.

Walk details : 3.3 ml, 1300 ft of ascent, 3 hours.

Highest point : Mellbreak northern summit 1,655 ft ( 509 m)

Walked with : Ann and the dogs, Harry and Bethan.

Weather : Sunny with fast evaporating valley mist, then clear and bright.

We started at the red phone box . . .


A cloudy dawn but brightness in the sky means only one thing . . . there's a cloud inversion in the valley.

It cleared fast but returns after lunch as a coastal breeze pushes in the sea fret in from the Solway.

What a nice morning . . . The mist is low in the valley and the tops are clear

and while breakfast was cleared the scene kept changing as the mist came and went.

Grasmoor is out there somewhere beyond the Loweswater Puffins.

Boots on and the lightest of pack on our backs, we make our way across towards Mellbreak.

This was the view back to Whiteside and Grasmoor . . .

. . . and the view forward past the broken sheep fence . . . towards Mellbreak.

Village life . . . walking the dogs.

The warmer weather in the last few days has encouraged the snowdrops to bloom.

Spring is definitely on the way.

The cloud that has sat in the Buttermere Valley has drifted out towards Lorton and is gradually evaporating in the warm sunshine.

There's a patch left on the field in front of Low Park

At the firebreak the lane turns towards Mosedale . . .
. . . but we climb a short distance up through the trees.

The view expands all the while and Loweswater looks flat calm and a beautiful rich blue colour in the sunshine.

Much of the snow has gone in recent days due to the rain and warmer temperatures.

Happy smiley face as we climb up.
More happy, smiley faces as they rest and wait for us.

The classic view of Rannerdale and Buttermere as we round one of the corners on the ascent.

A close up of Fleetwith Pike.

Brandreth still has a slight covering of snow. The water is calm enough there to give us reflections of the sunlight slopes.

The cloud still hangs in the distant Derwent Valley

so the inversion probably holds into the Bassenthwaite and Borrowdale Valleys which feed it.

The summit and time to relax and enjoy the view.

The Solway plain is clear down to the coast but there's a sea fret (sea mist) over the Solway Firth.

Harry seems to be enjoying the view too.

High Stile and Red Pike across the southern top of Mellbreak.

We walk to the mid point of the fell and then following the smallest of cairns took a green path over the edge.

Don't panic . . . it connected up with a traversing sheep path that slowly descends the western side.

The descent mirrors the fall of the main valley below so we seem to stay fairly high for most of the way.

The trees below are the ones that we passed through earlier . . . but look . . .

The lake has lost it's reflections and the breeze is pushing the sea mist up and over the end of the valley like a waterfall.

As we walk down so the mist crosses the lake to meet us . . . hazy at first but thicker behind.

Some is pushed up and over Low Fell.

We walk the path across the top of the woods as the mist spreads.
Join the dots . . . a raucous swirling flock of geese high above us.
Grasmoor as we passed this old oak in the woods.
The boat house and Hopegill Head across Crummock.

The morning cloud has long gone from the valley as we make our way back towards the Kirkstile.

Harry (and Bethan) stop off to wet their feet in the river.

Throwing sticks never fails to entertain them but the river flow is perhaps a little too fast for safe retrieval of every one.

Nearly home now . . .

but that mist has been forced back up the valley and is heading our way.

It is about to engulf Lanthwaite Woods below Whiteside.

Another cloud is forming below Grasmoor.

A pincer movement brings the Loweswater cloud across Mellbreak once again.

" . . . and do you know what . . .

it got so cold and grey again that they left us in the garden and went indoors and made a cup of tea ! "

- - - o o o - - -


Technical note: Pictures taken with with my Cannon G7 or Ann's Ixus 75 Digital camera.

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

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Previous walk - 26th January 2009 Walla Crag - a bit late in the day

A previous time up here - 8th July 2008 Mellbreak Backwards