Where is this walk?

Mellbreak and Crummock Water

February 20, 2019

Mellbreak and Crummock Water sit side by side on the quiet side of the Buttermere valley. Many motorists pass on their way to valley end but few stop at the excellent pub and complete this walk. It is one of the best.

The Walk

1,676 ft. Mellbreak¬†and Crummock Water tend to be admired from afar. Prospective walkers tend to head for the more dramatic fells at the head of Buttermere. However Mellbreak can stand proud in this company. The fell stands tall over the western, less frequented shore of Crummock Water and is separated from other mountains by deep, lonely valleys. This isolation is accentuated by steep sides on all of the fell’s flanks meaning a steep, rocky but interesting climb. This is followed by a mile long wide ridge before plunging back down to the shores of Crummock Water.

Crummock Water is familiar to me. When I was young we used to swim off the rocks on its eastern shore ¬†and canoe to the lonely west shore. However we never walked the excellent path through the screes on the rocky western fellside. This was a shame because the path is excellent and full of interest. Mellbreak is only ever climbed on its own. It is pointless to try and link it with the main Buttermere fells but combined with Crummock Water it is a lovely walk… as Wainwright says “no pairing of hill and lake have a closer partnership than these”


Follow the ridge of Mellbreak for its full length to gain a view of Scale Force under Blea Crag.

Mellbreak and Crummock Water walk is one my favourite 25 walks in the Lake District.

Navigation Tips on Mellbreak

When descending Mellbreak there is a good path directly south for most of the way. However at a wall the path turns away from the lake for 5 minutes. Join a bridleway to lakeside. Don’t climb the wall.

  • Bob Hope says:

    This looks a great walk. Would a young Labrador cope with it? How rough is the scree?

  • pussywillow says:

    I would recommend you follow the instructions on the given map – to avoid a steep scree slope downward descent – much better to clamber up the scree path and enjoy the pure elation of the ridge view towards Buttermere and Crummock Water with Haystacks/Red Pike to one side and Grasmoor on t’other.

  • laketrekker says:

    Just come back from Kirkstile inn on Loweswater and whilst there did the walk around Melbreak/Crummock Water. Nice walk and I think worth mentioning that dependant on which way you approach it gives two completly different experiences. If attempted from Crummock Water first, this gives a quite a steep rise from the lake to sheepfold at the turn,with fantastic views,! the walk then gently winds back down the valley. If attempted from the valley approach this gives a nice gentle ascent. up to the turn again with fantastic views but then the descent is a little easier to take on. A great walk one way if you are active enough to take on a brusque ascent or from the opposite way a little more leisurely experience.

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