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Sunrise from the frozen central peak of the Cobbler, Arrochar Alps (November 2012)

The Cobbler

The Cobbler – also known as Ben Arthur – is a very dramatic hill with a distinctive silhouette. It has three peaks, two of which – the North and Central peak, can be tackled by walkers, although getting to the true summit of the central peak requires a very good head for heights! It is a very popular hill so you need to pick your time carefully if you want it to yourself! A great walk with no hazards for sensible canicrossers. There are a few sheer drops on the summits but it’s possible to keep well clear of them.

Eye of the needle at sunrise [IMG_3063_4_5_fused]
The ‘Eye of the Needle” taken at dawn on a glorious morning in November

Our best memories of the Cobbler have all been night time climbs in the winter. Nothing quite beats the experience of setting off in pitch darkness with a canopy of stars in the sky and head torches lighting your way. With little to see en-route we typically make good progress and by the time we’ve raced the sun to the summit adrenaline is really coursing through our veins. When the first golden rays of sun pop up from behind distant mountains it is the most amazing experience. Impossible to describe!

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Our normally vocal Beagles are always stunned into respectful silence by a good sunrise!

Even in Spring and Autumn it can be extremely cold on the summit. When you take wind chill into account, zero degree temperatures at ground level can easily be -8 degrees or lower on the summit.

Bothy Huddle on The Cobbler [IMG_3162_3_4_fused]
This particular morning it was so cold that we chose to share the bothy bag with our farting Beagles – here we are huddled away eating a well deserved breakfast.

Frozen on The Cobbler [IMG_0125]
This was taken 10 minutes after arriving on the summit at the end of April – it was so cold that the sweat on our rucksacks and discarded base layers had turned white with frost

The 'eye' on The Cobbler, before sunrise [IMG_9869]
Here’s a pre-dawn shot of the same location, taken in April

Sunrise on The Cobbler [Pano 9989-94 Stitch Lighter]
Looking a little warmer as the sun makes an appearance

Moon over The Cobbler [IMG_3168_69_70_fused]
The eye of the needle. In order to reach the true summit (on top of the big rock stack) you need to crawl through this ‘eye’ and along a ledge with a stomach churning drop – not for the faint hearted!

The "Eye" on The Cobbler [IMG_3180_1_2_fused]
The view through the ‘eye’

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Retracing our steps back down to the ridge between the North and Central summits. The snow doesn’t look that deep, but in places it was waist deep. We had to dig the pups out on several occasions!

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Beanie admiring the views from the ridge

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Making our way back down from the North summit

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Homeward bound – heading down for a well earned fry up and a cozy bed

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A final view of the Cobbler’s distinctive outline

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Biggles having a well earned nap back at the caravan