Share your personal walking route experiences in Scotland, and comment on other peoples' reports.
Warning Please note that hillwalking when there is snow lying requires an ice-axe, crampons and the knowledge, experience and skill to use them correctly. Summer routes may not be viable or appropriate in winter. See winter information on our skills and safety pages for more information.

Return to The Stake

Return to The Stake

Postby weaselmaster » Sat Jan 09, 2021 9:12 pm

Sub 2000' hills included on this walk: Hill of Stake

Date walked: 09/01/2021

Distance: 24.5 km

Ascent: 699m

6 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

I do apologise for repeating myself - this weekend's walk was a double of last weekend's. Only colder, and with a slightly better sunset.

Given conditions were continuing to be superb on the hills we decided to have another summit camp on Hill of Stake this weekend. We'd walked along the coastal route from Port Glasgow to Langbank on Thursday in fairly drench conditions - there was low lying fog along the riverside and it got worse the further east we walked - should have gone along the coast the other way, as there was sunshine when we went back to Greenock.

2021-01-08_1109 Raw.gpx Open full screen  NB: Walkhighlands is not responsible for the accuracy of gpx files in users posts

Friday had a good forecast, unlike the rest of the coming week, sadly, so we bundled our kit together and set off back up to Hill of Stake from Lochwinnoch. There was a light covering of fresh snow in the village and up the farm roads - we had none in Greenock. It made the ice easier to walk on, so that was fine. Strangely, by the time we reached Highlinthills Farm there was no new snow. Weird. The farm track was still frozen solid and the going was alright - barely a breath of wind today. Sheep were out and about, but apart from a couple of cyclists, taking life in hands cycling on the ice we barely saw anyone else.

ImageDCA9DDB0-AE5C-42FB-A56F-94C8A1884D0E_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageD41A7DB6-FBC5-492C-A19B-A5C402D988C9_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

New hair style
ImageDFE5D342-3F29-4DCE-9CFB-AE0F2001F66A_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

By the time we approached Misty Law the snow became deeper - probably last weeks snow that ad been moved out by the wind. The trails up to Hill of Stake were still visible under a covering of snow. Allison was trying out a new pair of boots today (Wills Vegan Hiking Boots) and gave them a definite thumbs up for comfort, warmth and waterproofness.

As we got near to the summit of Stake we wondered if our snow wall from last weekend would have survived. And indeed it had - a little melted in places, but essentially intact. It was about 3:15 again, just as it had been last weekend, and we amused ourselves by doing a bit more height to the wall. Then we pitched the tent and sat looking out at the fiery orange ball disappearing slowly behind Arran. Just beautiful - and the Alpenglow on the Lomond Hills was more intense than last week.

Our wall from last weekend
ImageF595F5E8-75A2-4F7A-A906-3A398682B27F_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Rebuilding work
Image64D4A45A-DDF6-400E-A0C2-E17B867C627F_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageE1D81173-A7A7-4ED6-93B1-C61C18014D17_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageB5BC2E66-3C93-4AF6-9815-EE9F02AF5C40_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image9F9954FE-BDA9-46BF-ADD2-841CD09AC549_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageEE22C421-86D4-47A8-8B0C-70CF85F13FA9_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Our evening meal was Huel once again - Thai Curry flavour. We got into the sleeping bags, a little concerned that the water in our bottles had frozen, and they were inside the tent. Allison had brought a hip flask of her birthday whisky (Longrow Peated, from Campbeltown) which brought a warm glow in the midst of the cold. Certainly colder than last weekend, but so still and peaceful.

Should have packed my tripod...
Image39EFBAA9-52B7-4831-A816-8F8658633AC9_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

The wind rose a little during the night - we could hear it buffeting the top of the tent over the wall, then the wind direction changed so it was coming directly into the gap in our wall! This made making breakfast a bit of a challenge, as the wind (and spindrift) were hitting the door. There was also a reluctance to get out of the warm sleeping bag and into the frigid air.

Arran mountains sharply defined in the morning light
Image5F22AC31-4621-4E5D-A9EF-CD2467B35431_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Met a few folk on the way down, as they were going up, including a couple of Polish guys who said it had been -8 during the night. I could believe that. We altered our route off the hill, which avoided some of the bogginess we encountered last weekend. Muirshiell was a lot quieter this weekend too, as the sky was ominously overcast and it looked like snow or rain would be greeting us soon. We walked along from the Barytes mine, the streams frozen, fangs of icicles adorning the banks. Had lunch in a wooden gathering hall we found down from the car park. Our walk down the road to Lochwinnoch was much easier this week as there were only a handful of cars going up and down - not surprising in the wind and rain.
ImageEA4D0B63-8C48-4CEE-9D7B-3E9C4011AB52_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image21D630EA-9418-44AE-BA33-3FCB54E4B32E_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image83A50743-86AC-4EC4-9A79-0FA225B4C86F_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image3E53C807-58E0-46A5-BF16-04B8D8E5EB40_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Image852B5376-2440-4F7A-8C6B-7985C3ED77C6_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

Frozen waterfall
Image8F892F93-8098-4A9A-BD4C-2648593B1649_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr

ImageCC58F592-C1A6-4049-8593-A02FB6E6C17A_1_201_a by Al, on Flickr.
User avatar
Hill Bagger
Posts: 1937
Munros:227   Corbetts:45
Grahams:76   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:377   Hewitts:31
Wainwrights:15   Islands:28
Joined: Aug 22, 2012
Location: Greenock

Re: Return to The Stake

Postby malky_c » Fri Jan 15, 2021 12:24 pm

Good effort - making the most of the local hills for sure 8) . I suppose we should attempt something similar on a local hill but the warmth of the house is just too hard to leave at the moment :lol: .

One day I will persuade Jackie that we need to go up Hill of Stake again. Might be a few years before she forgets the ordeal of the first time though!
User avatar
Posts: 6039
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:74
Sub 2000:279   Hewitts:268
Wainwrights:122   Islands:38
Joined: Nov 22, 2009
Location: Glasgow/Inverness

Re: Return to The Stake

Postby Sick Kid » Tue Jan 19, 2021 12:18 am

One day I will persuade Jackie that we need to go up Hill of Stake again. Might be a few years before she forgets the ordeal of the first time though!

It's one of those hills Malcy! Most definitely better in the snow, I can testify to that! :lol: :lol: :lol:
User avatar
Sick Kid
Posts: 534
Munros:282   Corbetts:222
Grahams:219   Donalds:89
Sub 2000:351   Hewitts:26
Joined: Dec 2, 2013
Location: Sunny Gourock by the sea!

6 people think this report is great.
Register or Login
free to be able to rate and comment on reports (as well as access 1:25000 mapping).

Walkhighlands community forum is advert free

Your generosity keeps this site running.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by donating by direct debit?

Return to Walk reports - Scotland

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: JFT_96, magicdin and 73 guests