05/03/2020

A walk around Buttermere - my favourite 'Lake' walk

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
Looking down Buttermere towards Fleetwith Pike on this cold winters day in February. You wouldn't think it on this photo but we'll experience all weathers in a couple of hours. This walk around Buttermere is my favourite 'flat' walk in the Lakes and is relatively easy, but gives plenty of different vantage points and settings and can be done in a couple of hours.  




The map shows the route I always take when walking around Buttermere - going anti-clockwise from Buttermere Village is what I recommend and doing the full circle as much as possible around Buttermere's shores so you get all the best views of the lake (or mere :-) and surrounding fells ! It will only take 2 hours or so and can be done with kids as it's pretty low level and there are also plenty of places to stop and enjoy some food.


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
We park a 100m or so just outside of Buttermere village on the road leading towards Newlands Pass - it's free here (£4+ in the carparks!)



Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick
The walk starts to blue skies :-) and looks rather warm but theres a fresh breeze. This is looking down Buttermere towards Fleetwith Pike.


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
A band of rain starts moving in giving the place a whole different feel so we head to the woods for a bit of shelter.

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
The weather was very erratic today and fortunately the rain (which turned into hail for a bit) passed quite quickly and the surrounding fells and Fleetwith Pike are visible once more :-)

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
One of the things I love about Buttermere is how un-developed it is - not many buildings around here and the only residence you can really see is the white Hassness Country House 


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
We pass these walkers looking a bit wet & weary who look like the have just returned from either Haystacks or Fleetwith Pike - two excellent walks in their own right - but not today for us!


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
We leave the south-eastern shores of Buttermere for a bit as there is no path around that part and head for the bridge over Warnscale Beck

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
As we pass over the little bridge which spans Warnscale Beck - we get good view of Haystacks on the right and Fleetwith Pike on the left. We won't be tackling these today and so are half way on our journey around Buttermere after an hours walking. 

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
Good views of the snow covered peaks of High Stile & Red Pike from this side of Buttermere

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
A lot of photographers love this view of Butteremere with Haystacks in the background and the trees on the shore.


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
Blue skies again :-)

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
We wete a bit shelter out the wind here so it was the perfect place to have the flask of soup - tastes so much better when its cold outside :-)

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
There had been a load of rain in the 2 weeks preceding our February trip and flooding in many parts of the lakes. I'd never seen the level of water in Buttermere so high and this part of the path was fully under water so a bit tricky to navigate - all good fun though.

Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
The path takes an interesting turn when you leave Crag Wood on the Hassness Estate - where you don't go over the land but straight through the rock. It's quite dark in here so you can't quite see your footing and there were quite a few puddles in here - fortunately my boots are waterproof :-)


Buttermere Lake District walk best lakes quick route circular haystacks fleet with pike
The last view of Buttermere for the day - and you can see how high the lake has risen with the tree on the left!



Finally here's a couple of photos of the Croft House cafe - a perfect place to stop at the end of the walk for a drink and bite to eat and bit of a warm.




As ever I hope you have enjoyed this little write up and photos and it inspires you to want to visit the area and give the route a go.  If you have any questions about this route - just post a comment and I'll try and answer. 


Blog Post by Stuart Hodgson, 'The Hiking Photographer'


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