Ben Arthur by Arrocher – Watercolour in a Watercolour Moleskine

Ben Arthur is a mountain in the South West Highlands in the Loch Lomond National Park. It is known as “The Cobbler” as it resembles a shoemaker when viewed from below. Lots of people have attempted this climb as it is relatively easy except for the last 150 feet – the Cobbler’s head. To get to the top it is necessary to climb around this pinnacle, known as the eye, and traverse past an exposed drop. This is called “Threading the Needle” and can be nerve-racking, explaining why so many have “almost” climbed to the top. The hill, at 2946 feet, is just short of a “Munro” , mountains over 300 feet catalogued by Hugh Munro in the late 1800′s. Many of Scotland’s mountains are are named “Ben” which is an Anglicised corruption of the Gaelic “Beinn” which just means “Mountain”.

My two youngest sons, Andrew and Ewan climbed this last Friday. This scene depicts Andy standing on the summit. Ewan, prudently, stayed below to take the photograph. Andy seems to be squeezing as much of Scotland into his blood before he leaves to work in New Zealand in July. A week earlier he scaled Schiehallion (The fairy mountain) in the Perth and Kinross area. I suspect he has the New Zealand Alps in his sights.