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" Rannerdale for an Ice Cream  "

Date & start time:      7th September 2021.   10 am start.

Location of Start :     Hause Point car park, Crummock, Cumbria, Uk. ( NY 163 184)

Places visited :          Rannerdale Knotts, Low Bank, Buttermere, High Rannerdale and back.

Walk details :              4.7 mls, 1750 ft of ascent, 4 hours 15 mins including lunch.

Highest point :           Rannerdale Knotts, 1153 ft - 255 m.

Walked with :              Mike and Sue, Sally and Dave and the dogs, Otto, Dylan and Dougal.

Weather :                      Sunshine and blue skies, very warm.


© Crown copyright. All rights reserved. Licence number PU 100034184.


Mike and Sue and family are over from Tyne and Wear on the east coast and are staying in Borrowdale for a week.

They expressed a wish to climb Rannerdale Knotts so it would be churlish not to accompany them today.

The sun is out, the early September weather is very hot and humid and so a lower fell walk would suit the day.

My fellow walkers today, Mike, Sue, Sally and Dave . . .
. . . plus our three dogs, Otto, Dougal and Dylan.

The starting point was at the car park by Hause Point

and a relatively early arrival enabled an easy parking space.

Hause Point . . . so nice I almost felt like a swim . . . but it was too early in the day and we had a walk to enjoy instead.

Climbing up Rannerdale, another couple following up below us.
One of the locals keeps an eye on proceedings as we pass.

Wood House Islands at the head of Crummock.

It's going to be a hot day and there's a haze about in the air already.

Higher up now and looking over to Ling Crags on the shore of Mellbreak.

At the viewpoint next to the summit.

I haven't been here since the July walk when we laid Ann to rest.

The dogs stop by the summit cairn for the obligatory photo.

Mike wants a picture of the three dogs together . . . but it is not as easy as it looks to get them all looking the same way!

Our walk followed the ridge line, all the way along Low Bank.

It is late summer and the bracken is thick on the slopes of the fells.

A group decision found us descending the end of Low Bank in the direction of Buttermere Village.

Passing the delightfully well maintained gardens of Crag End Cottages.

A choice of cafés awaits, but only one does Buttermere's famous Ayreshire Ice Cream . . . the one slightly up the hill past the old school.


That's it . . . we've found it and so have lots of other people.


Now for an ice cream from the Star Ship Enterprise . . .

Well . . . commercial enterprise anyway.

Select a flavour, pay your money and it's yours to enjoy.


- - - o o o - - -

Suitably refreshed we retrace our steps to the Bridge Hotel.

From there we take the path through the gate that leads into Mill Woods.

The 'Road Closed' sign relates to the 'Mission Impossible' filming in the valley, complete with Tom Cruise jumping out of helicopters.

The sign is turned round today as they are nearing the end of their filming.

We head up through the woods, enjoying the cool dappled shade on this hot day.

The Mill Beck valley is a delightful walk . . . the dogs take a dip.
The path passes close by the river, then at other places climbs high above it .

All routes lead to the final steps that take us out onto the open fell.

The cooling benefits of the ice cream have faded but the taste lingers as we climb towards Low Bank once again.

It is still within some peoples school holidays

so the cars are parked all the way up the road above the Church, to a point beyond the Water Works buildings.

Even Otto has slowed down slightly in this heat.

Great Gable and Kirk Fell are now receding into the midday haze at the top of the valley.

Rather than retrace our steps along the ridge, we drop down the Squat Beck Valley behind Rannerdale Knotts.

Ahead are the lower reaches of Crummock Water and distant Loweswater through the gap.

Otto finds a chocolate coloured mud pool to cool his chocolate coloured body.

You can't see it to clearly, but he is caked in wet, sticky mud.

Stand clear, as he rushes around to tell everyone how good the mud bath was !

A more leisurely descent for us as we look across the valley towards Grasmoor.

Rather than head straight back, we'll divert along the fell wall in the picture and find somewhere nice to sit for a light sandwich lunch.

Mike takes a last look before we head behind the trees,

then it is a slight climb up the lower slopes of Whiteless Pike to find that wall.

I'm sure the path stayed closer to the wall, but the heavy bracken dictates where we walk today.

Even the Herdwicks are feeling the heat, as they shelter in the shade of an old Hawthorn tree.

Rannerdale Beck gives its name to the main valley but only flows through the lower third of it.

We join the beck as it descends into the main valley from between Lad Hows and Whiteless Pike.

Lunch was delayed till we reached the old sheep fold by the beck.

Mike seemed to appreciate the cooling effect of the water in preference to a sandwich and a coffee that Sue found in the backpack.

- - - o o o - - -


Suitably refreshed

and with boot laces firmly tied once more

we continue on our way.


Route finding becomes a slight problem

with all the high ferns

but we follow the dogs

which makes navigation easier

as they seem to sniff out the path.


- - - o o o - - -

The fell wall also defines the route ahead.

The field over the other side of the wall is full of bluebells in spring but there's no sign of them now.

We skirt around the top of the Bluebell fields

and follow the wall down until we meet up with the track that comes over from Cinderdale.

September brings bright red Rowan berries.
With the sun directly over Rannerdale we join the path at the gate.

Heavy bracken abounds here too.

Another Rowan adds colour to this photo of Grasmoor's stoney summit.

We cross the bridge to rejoin the track we left earlier.

Another stream . . . another chance to cool off for the dogs.

- - - o o o - - -


This is the season for the Rowan colours

but in contrast the Ash is losing its bright green leaves.


This is not particularly due to the hot summer

but more to the fungal disease of "Ash Die Back"

that seems to be affecting many of the trees

here in the three local valleys.


Even one of the trees in my garden is affected

and I'm not looking forward to losing it.


- - - o o o - - -

A short diversion takes us over to view the "potash burnary".

This stone lined pit was used to burn bracken to make a potash rich ash, that was mixed with lanolin from sheep's wool to make soap.

From the bluebell fields it was just a short stroll back to the cars at Hause Point.

A very warm walk today but one made more acceptable by a suitable application of Buttermere ice cream half way round !

Thanks to Sue and Mike for the suggestion for the walk.

- - - o o o - - -

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- - - o o o - - -

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- - - o o o - - -

Technical note: Pictures taken with my Panasonic Lumix TZ60 digital camera.

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

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Previous walk - 5th September Honister and the Window

A previous time up here - 5th May 2020 - The Rannerdale Bluebells 2020

Next walk - 15th September Loweswater's Matterhorn with Loes