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Buttermere's Ruddy Beck Track
Date & start time: Monday 25th October 2010, midday start.
Location of Start : The National Trust car park, Buttermere, Cumbria, Uk ( NY 173 173 )
Places visited : Buttermere, Scale Bridge, Ling Comb, Dodd, Bleaberry Tarn and back to Buttermere.
Walk details : 3.75 mls, 1800 ft of ascent, 2 hrs 45 mins including a biscuit stop.
Highest point : Buttermere Red Pike's outlier, Dodd, 2090 ft - 641 m.
Walked with : Myself and Bethan.( Ann and Harry were off for another of his 'hot swims' again )
Weather : Beautifully sunny but cool, turning cloudier towards the end.
[ Alter the settings to zoom or change the Map, use Everytrail to download the Gps route ]
A path I've been meaning to try for years now,
but each time I've passed I never seem to find the start of it.
Armed with a decent map, reading glasses and sufficient time I try for the route,
... and have several surprises along the way.
I managed the last place in the car park at Buttermere before heading off into the village.
I think this was the busiest I've ever seen it . . . and it was even fuller when I returned 2 and 3/4 hours later.
Crag House Farm on the way to the Bridge.
Dodd is the high ground in the centre of the photo but it merges in with Red Pike and Lingcomb Edge behind.
The Bridge Hotel . . . almost Alpine in design with those nice balconies.
Turning towards the Fish, the other hotel and pub in the village.
The Croft Cafe has new competition this year from Syke Farm but there's plenty of business available today for everyone.
Nice enough to sit out and enjoy a snack or early lunch.
A temporary car park has opened to cope with the influx of half term holiday visitors . . . and it's full !
Leaving the sounds of the village behind, I cross the meadows towards Scale Bridge.
This is Mellbreak . . . the thin blue line above the wall is all that can be seen of Crummock Water from this angle.
Every time I look at one of these bridges now I always end up thinking what it may have looked like in the November floods last year.
High Snockrigg . . . the fell immediately behind the village that leads on to Robinson Fell behind.
I've passes Near Ruddy Beck and reached the bridge over Far Ruddy Beck.
Somewhere between the two is supposed to be a path up the fell but its start point is far from obvious.
No matter . . . I set off up one of the several small sheep tracks up through the bracken
and start to gain height as I enter the woods above the Buttermere to Scale Force path.
The three people included Mike Park of Cockermouth MRT who had climbed up to investigate a report of an abandoned campsite in the woods.
There seemed to be two tents and a large bivvy shelter in good state of repair but not recently used. Mike had been checking in case anyone had come to grief locally. The tents seemed well constructed but virtually abandoned. If anyone knows anything about it, Mike would be grateful for information, not that they are causing a problem but just to assure the team that there's nothing to worry about regarding the camp.
Please let me know and I'll pass any information on.
Still . . . with a view like this and a waterfall for a morning shower it must be a nice place on a fine day.
Proceeding on up, the mountains start to rise above the tree tops again.
The green fields of Buttermere Village
Leaving the trees I seem to have found a good path that leads up to the wall.
Mistress of all she surveys . . .
oh . . . and this bit too . . . Lingcomb Edge.
For those wishing to follow my route and are equipped with O.S. Explorer map, don't take the green coloured path up through the woods too literally as it doesn't exist on the ground. However, once through the wall my route followed the black dotted line on the map almost exactly.
- - - o o o - - -
Earlier Mike had also talked of a wartime wreck below Lingcomb Edge which was a Wellington Bomber on a training run in 1943.
Following his rough directions I proceeded off-piste towards the steep base of Red Pike and the Edge. I didn't have to walk far.
What looked like a crash crater was in fact a recent landslide.
I had discovered the source of Ruddy Gill ( a stream flowed out of the hollow) but no crash debris.
However, a little further down . . . surprise number two . . .
Apparently the six crew who died were carried down by local men on farm gate stretchers sometime in 1943
and most of the remains of the aircraft have been cleared away. These are always sad places, even sixty seven years later.
- - - o o o - - -
Climbing up to The Saddle.
Looking over the brink from the lower cairn on the summit of The Dodd.
Far below is the village of Buttermere as the clouds throw moving shadows on the north western fells.
The view from the top today . . .
A drink and a biscuit for me and a few extra dog treats for Bethan and it's time to be off.
A classic high upland tarn in the cirque, corrie or combe, depending on your nationality.
From the hause down to here and virtually the rest of the way down to Buttermere, the path has been pitched with stone.
A massive undertaking but one that has paid dividends. It eases the walk up, reduces erosion but I must admit is rather hard underfoot on the descent.
Passing through a sparse line of Scots Pines as Bethan and I descend towards Old Burtness Woods and Buttermere.
Crummock through the pines.
One of the few fellow walkers I actually passed today
despite the huge number of cars parked in the village below.
Am I allowed one more photo of Buttermere, Fleetwith Pike and the Pines ?
Bethan takes the opportunity of a cooling dip after completing the long descent.
Fleetwith Pike across the lake.
A regular feature of a visit to this part of the lake is the National Trust recruitment vehicle.
I say good afternoon and pass without stopping to buy . . . no point having two memberships is there.
- - - o o o - - -
Stop Press . . . subsequent to my publishing this page I received the following pictures and information.
Technical note: Pictures taken with my Canon G10 digital camera.
Resized in Photoshop, and built up on a Dreamweaver web builder.
This site best viewed with . . . a trekking pole for the steep ascent and descent.
Previous walk - 20th October 2010 Harry's Swim and Walk
A previous time up here - Thursday 23rd July 2009 Scale Force and Red Pike
Next walk - 30th October 2010 Ennerdale's Anglers Crag