Ending January on a Winter High - A Corbett Cracker!!

Route: Cobbler, Arrochar

Corbetts: The Cobbler

Date walked: 31/01/2015

Time taken: 5.3 hours

Distance: 11km

Ascent: 924m

Tamsin, a fellow walker and West End of Glasgow resident whom I met when doing Ben More in December, had enquired if I was walking this weekend. She was up for some mountain time and was keen to test out her new shiny ice axe and G12 crampons (Although a veteran of over 200 Munros this was her first time using crampons). I was well up for a walk so we agreed to walk on the Saturday.

The days leading up to Saturday was spent trawling the weather sites in search of some decent weather, however it looked pretty grim in most areas with winds forecast up to 100kmh, no views and snow showers. We decided to keep it local and head for Arrochar with the options of doing Ben Arthur or Beinn Ime. Both are ascended from their south faces so this would break the wind. We would turn back if the weather was too brutal.

Saturday arrived, Tamsin picked me up at 7.30am and we headed to Arrochar. Due to our overwhelming excitement to the day ahead we missed the cut off for Erskine Bridge which had us heading to Greenock! We took the next exit and corrected our error. Suited and booted we set off at 9am. The weather appeared better than predicted, well from ground level…!

Took the well-defined zig zagged path heading NW. It wasn’t long before the views to loch long opened up behind us.

The snowy laden path.

Cleared the forestry track and open ground lay ahead. The 3 snow covered peaks of Ben Arthur dominated the landscape, looking menacing and inviting in equal measures. It was at this point, and due to having decent views, we decided to head up Ben Arthur via central gully.




Stopped at the Narnain boulders for a quick bite to eat. Couldn’t believe the sun was actually out and warming our cold faces, was feeling very happy and content.

Put on our goggles at this point as the wind was blistery and there was spindrift aplenty. We also stuck on our crampons and got the axes out. Soon we were ascending our way through the crags. The weather was ever changing with clouds coming and going but it simply added to the atmosphere. The snow was knee deep in places but it was just a joy to be out playing. This was an adult adventure playground.




Tamsin clearly enjoying her new toys!



Some big icicles!

The higher we went the more dramatic the rock faces looked. This was turning out to be a belter of a day/walk.



The final push to the bealach. We knew when we reached here that the wind would be hitting us full pelt.



On reaching the bealach the winds were indeed ferocious but again we just got on with it, absolutely loving the change in conditions and the challenge ahead. The North face presented harder snow and ice for Tamsin to get some quality crampon time. We headed for the South peak.

Looking back to the North peak.

Got to the summit which presented fantastic views in every direction. It was now time for some mountain posing!!






Summit Video...

My mountain impression – angel of the North! Tamsin actually believes she is a snow angel and has a direct link to the weather gods, she’d put in a good word on Friday evening…seemed to work!

Decided to descend our ascent route, soon out of the wind…

Time for some fun! There was plenty of little pockets that looked like a snow bed.


We found a great seat and enjoyed our winter sunshine lunch. The chat was great as Tamsin has a real love for the outdoors. She’s been climbing hills from a young age – her dad used to take her up the Munros. Working in finance has provided her with the opportunity to live and work in many far flung places around the world but she insists there is no place more beautiful than Scotland.

On our way down we witnessed a few small groups who were doing some ice climbing or building snow holes. Everyone was having so much fun and enjoying the fantastic winter conditions, it just puts a huge smile on your face.

Soon we found ourselves sitting at the Narnain boulders again and taking in the sunshine. We had a quick final look back to Ben Arthur before setting off for the very leisurely walk out.


Winter conditions certainly add a different dimension and challenge to the Arrochar Alps. The snow just induces a huge fun factor. I’ll certainly be utilizing them as much as possible whilst the snow remains.

Big thanks to Tamsin for driving and being my walking partner today. Next week she is down in the Lakes for a week doing her summer Mountain Leader Training, so good luck with that. Next time we walk she can lead the way :wink:

A great day out in good company :)

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User avatar
Location: Glasgow
Occupation: Mental Health Nursing Student
Interests: Hillwalking, Running, Cycling, Cinema, Music.
Activity: Mountain Walker
Pub: Kintail Lodge
Mountain: Stac Polly
Place: Assynt
Gear: Balaclava
Camera: Panasonic Lumix
Ideal day out: Early Start. Ridge Walk. Scrambling. Plenty of Ascent.
Ambition: complete a round.

Munros: 229
Corbetts: 27
Grahams: 7
Donalds: 10
Wainwrights: 18
Hewitts: 16
Sub 2000: 2

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Trips: 3
Distance: 27 km
Ascent: 2769m
Munros: 2
Corbetts: 2


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Distance: 137.5 km
Ascent: 10445m
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Munros: 17
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Grahams: 1
Donalds: 2
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Wainwrights 1


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Distance: 149.8 km
Ascent: 13320m
Munros: 12
Corbetts: 4
Hewitts: 5
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Distance: 660.28 km
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Sub2000s: 1


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Distance: 246 km
Ascent: 21161m
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Joined: Oct 27, 2009
Last visited: Feb 01, 2015
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