Winter Routes | Chockstone Gully - Arrochar Alps
Aaron Erskine-Petrie - SGO Climber
Chockstone Gully - Arrochar Alps -
Chockstone Gully is a Grade II winter route located on the Cobbler North Peak and makes for a short but fun day out, especially on a bluebird day when it can feel very close to an Alpine climb.
Starts from the Succoth car park and heads up the zig zag forest path.
Once out of the first forest, the Cobbler should be in sight. Continue straight up the main walking path, past the Narnian boulders to where the path forks, then stay left.
From here you will walk up the normal walking path. You will traverse right off the path half way up the last steep section before a small plateau, and head higher and around towards the more easterly aspect of the North peak, until you meet the bottom on the gully.
Pitch 1 & 2:
Both pitches are what you would expect to find on a typical Grade II snow gully. Pitch 1 is very well protected along the left hand side, perfect for some practice before you take on any future harder/ more technical routes. A second belay can be found just as the gradient of the gully eases, then you can enjoy the straight forward climb towards the last pitch.
Both pitches 1 & 2 can be 'soloed' depending on conditions and the parties climbing experience, but it is always good practice to be roped up.
This pitch is definitely the most exciting out of the three, starting just before the 'Chockstone Arch'. The gully steepens in ascent as you advance which can make it slightly harder in lean conditions. You will then get to a point where you have to choose your exit between an ice slab on the right hand side, or you can tread left and exit through a hole at the top of the gully, which is definitely a lot easier. A good belay position can be found left of the exit for your second to climb.
It is definitely worth noting before you start climbing pitch 3, the more experienced climber should lead this pitch as there is not much protection, although you may be able to place a nut/ wedge or two, depending on the conditions on the day.
After your party tops out you can either traverse around to the South Face and climb 'Great Gully' (Grade II) or head to the summit of the Cobbler.
If you want to descend from Chockstone Gully, then traverse around until your are in line with 'Great Gully' then head down the slope approximately 50 meters where you will meet the normal walkers path to take you back down to the car.
Done, a simple climb but a great climb for practising and gaining confidence.
Thanks for reading,
Aaron EP - SGO Sponsored Climber.