Wandope (via Rannerdale Knotts and Whiteless Pike)

Of the route taken on this outing, Wainwright says ‘No other way up Wandope can compare even remotely with this for beauty and grandeur of views and sustained interest’. Agreed!
Interest in doing this walk was kindled during the previous one, over Mellbreak, on the other side of Crummock Water, from which there were fine views towards Rannerdale Knotts, Whiteless Pike, and Wandope itself. The starting point was Buttermere village NT car-park, thence up to the ‘hause’ at the south-eastern end of Rannerdale Knotts. Because of the rather showery conditions towards Buttermere at the time, and the brighter weather in the Crummock Water direction, I decided to walk the length of Rannerdale Knotts and back at this point, rather than later on on the walk as originally intended, and a very fine ‘viewing station’ it turned out to be, and I think better than would have been the case in the generally cloudier conditions that occurred later on.
On return to the hause, up Whiteless Breast to the ever-steepening ascent of Whiteless Pike summit, a pause for lunch at the summit itself, and then on via Saddle Gate and Whiteless Edge to Thirdgill Head Man and over to Wandope. Views over to the south-west, especially the Scafells, increasingly good, as well as of the bulk of Grasmoor’s summit massif and down into the hanging valley of Addacombe Hole. Then back down by the same route.
This walk can be very highly commended for the wonderful variety of views it provides, being strategically placed overlooking the ‘divide’ between Crummock Water and Buttermere, and high enough towards the final summit to provide excellent panoramas to the south-western fells in particular as well.
[Note: an excellent article by Tony Greenbank on a good deal of the scenery covered in this walk, and more besides, can be found here.]
(Highest point: Wandope, 2533ft/772m. Distance: 5.87miles/9.44km. Ascent: 2708ft./825m.)

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