Walk                 : Mellbreak via the North Tower

                                        Date                 : 20th  May 2015

                                        Weather           : Broken cloud cover & very strong wind around 13°C

                                        Route Details    : Kirkstile Inn, Loweswater  and return

                                        Distance           : @ 5 miles

 

                                                Click here to see which part of Lakeland this walk is situated ….

 

                                        A 3D visual of the walk

 

 

 

                                        Overview

                                       

                                                            After the great weather we had in April we was hoping for something similar in May during our week long stay in Ambleside, with

                                                            a number of varied climbs planned. The reality, after several rainy / poor visibility days was only a few windows of opportunity

                                                            where conditions were at least dry and gave us a chance to get out on the fells. Mellbreak by the side of Crummock Water in the

                                                            Western region is the Lake Districts mini version of Ayres Rock and we chose to climb it by the north tower route up the steep

                                                            scree slopes, that was Wainwright’s preferred route of ascent.

 

 

The walk starts in Loweswater down a lane that leads towards the Kirkstile Inn pub. There is limited car parking off the main road,

however there is some more parking available down the lane and just past the pub

 

 

As we progress down the lane the north face of Mellbreak dominates the horizon and from here looks quite intimidating

 

 

 

The path leads past St Bartholemew’s church and the pub and the steepness of the North Tower becomes strikingly apparent

 

 

 

Cross Park Beck and keep on the lane as it passes through the farm and meanders round towards Mosedale

 

 

Looking over to Darling Fell and Low Fell from the lane

 

 

The path eventually reaches a gate that takes you up a fire break that carves its way through a small wooded area

 

 

Through the woods and the scale of the climb now becomes clear. The scree path left of centre is the route that will be taken

 

 

Looking back to the start of the path and Loweswater

 

 

At the bottom of the steep scree slope, and what follows now is a fairly uncomfortable tussle for about 30 minutes or so in trying to keep a firm

footing especially in the strong gusting wind. It is best to take the path on the left that is banked a little and is slightly easier to walk on. Either way

the aim is to try and head for the dip to the right hand side of the rock tower in the centre. Not many photos here on as you had to concentrate on

not breaking every bone in your body !!

 

 

Past the rock tower and the path bends round to the right and the walk takes on a whole new complexion as it narrows (alarmingly) and passes over

the top of what Wainwright called “the big gulley”

 

 

This view from the second promontory is what A.W. called “a lovely peep around a corner” and shows the extents of Crummock Water and Buttermere … stunning !!

 

  

 

As it was possible to stand up straight at this point I started to take some more photos !!

 

   

 

The final push to the summit is easily attained along a fairly level path

 

  

 

I continue to take photo’s from the North Tower summit while Sue tucks in to what can only be described as a “Dockers” butty

 

 

Hopegill Head (left) and Grasmoor from the summit

 

  

 

                                                                Looking south towards Red Pike &  High Stile                                                        and sweeping round towards the head of Buttermere and Fleetwith Pike

 

 

Whiteside and Hopegill Head

 

Here is a 360 degree panorama from the summit to give an idea of the wind strength …. https://youtu.be/yVKnw3sTqkw

 

 

Mellbreak in profile after heading back down (carefully) on the way to Buttermere

 

 

 

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