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Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel


Postby mountain coward » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:31 am

Route description: Ben Stack

Grahams included on this walk: Ben Stack

Date walked: 18/06/2010

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While I was sat in the pub in Durness one evening (the nice one by Smoo Cave) bemoaning the fact that I hadn't got as many hills done as I'd have liked, Richard very kindly suggested I do Ben Stack on the way down to Glen Shiel on the Saturday. I say kindly as that meant he had to sit in the car for a few hours with nothing to do or read and he isn't really keen on walks being done on 'travelling' days - I'm the opposite and, if I'm passing something interesting, will just stop off and do it. I cheered up immediately...

Come the Saturday morning and I started to get nervous - it did look an awfully pointy hill for mountain cowards - but the book said it was fine 'from the back'...
Ben Stack - sharp!.jpg
We were soon parked up by Loch Stack and the lovely track which goes off to the very beautiful Arkle (near Achfary) and I was booted up and away. As the official walk report says on here, there is a spine of rock goes all the way up the lower parts of the hill in more or less a straight line for the summit and you just have to follow that so navigationally I wasn't worried at all! It was a clear day anyway and coming out quite nice and sunny.
Ben Stack-flat bit before final climb.jpg
Ben Stack summit cone.jpg


The walk is extremely straightforward. I have to admit to thinking the summit cone was just a bit on the steep side for cowards but didn't have any real problems with it. On reaching the 'split' summit, I went out along the north ridge and back via the south one. Just after the north summit cairn and aerials (whatever they're for), there is a little spine of a narrow ridge which I thought I ought to go along, despite it being quite windy and an enormous drop down the right hand side. There were 2 chaps watching me from where they were lying in the sun and out of the wind. I teetered along the ridge as far as I dare and then hurriedly came back - they looked quite amused. When we discussed our various routes, turned out they came up that side - the route looks horrific! They made confident and short work of my narrow ridge when they set off back down...
Ben Stack twin summit ridges.jpg
Ben Stack North summit.jpg
Ben Stack south summit.jpg
Loch Stack from Ben Stack.jpg
Ben Stack summit cone to return route.jpg


I was soon hurrying back down the slopes so as not to keep Richard waiting too long... During my ascent, I thought the rocky spine I'd followed was very obvious but found on the descent there were actually a few so that could be a bit confusing in mist... They all go back down to the road though so it wouldn't be a problem if you hit on the wrong one.
Loch More fm Ben Stack descent.jpg


The path to the foot of the mountain from the roadside was a bit boggy and, to say what a dry spring it's been, it must be bad in a wet year. I was surprised to see that the 'vehicle track' had been followed by a 4-wheeled vehicle of some kind all the way to the base of the steep summit cone! Some people are lazy!! To me, if people want to go and shoot deer or whatever, they should be made to walk all the way!

So anyway, a good quick hill if anyone is wanting one - I would say it took me 2.5 to 3 hours in total (although I can't remember) and I'm not that quick. Have to put in the Arkle shot - such a gorgeous-looking hill!
Arkle across Loch Stack.jpg
Last edited by mountain coward on Sun Jan 02, 2011 1:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby monty » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:37 am

You must be gettin better MC,
You goin up a spine like ridge? :shock: Are you mad :lol: :lol: Well done. Pictures look a bit misty though?
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby maddjock » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:40 am

yay... good job getting up there... I love that hill... 8)
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby mountain coward » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:45 am

monty wrote:You must be gettin better MC,
You goin up a spine like ridge? :shock: Are you mad :lol: :lol: Well done. Pictures look a bit misty though?


My good ol' Zenith gets scared too and it's eye mists up wi' fear! :lol:
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby monty » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:46 am

:lol: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby HighlandSC » Mon Jul 05, 2010 12:50 am

That looks a fine hill :D

No thoughts about going digital with the cam yet MC? :wink:
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Re: Ben Stack - A Quickie on the way to Glen Shiel

Postby mountain coward » Mon Jul 05, 2010 1:00 am

No way no how! I'm gonna fight over the last few films in the shops! :lol:
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