The Stack o' Roo.

The Stack o' Roo (seaward face)

The Stack o' Roo is located on the west coast of the Orkney mainland. (GR 228229) It is situated roughly half way between Marwck Bay to the north and The Bay of Skail (Skara Brae) to the south. The nearest approach is from the end of the Vesta Fiold track (GR 230224) to the north east of the stack.

Stack o' Roo (in the rain) Stack o' Roo (north face)

ACCESS: The best and easiest approach to the base of the stack is from the north. To access the stack, first abseil down the blow hole on the headland to the north on to the huge sea level platforms. From here it is a 30 meter swim across a choppy wee channel to the sea level platforms at the base of the seaward face of the stack.

ASCENT: There are two routes on this stack.

The original route starts in the cave that runs through the stack. Belay from the landward mouth of the cave. Follow the ledge leading out the cave towards the land, at the end of this ledge traverse around the corner and continue traversing across the land ward face to it's center to the bottom of a prominent fault. Ascend this fault to a large lump of ancient metal, pull out left and through a couple of overhangs on jugs to a good wee ledge at half height. From here the climbing is easy but the rock is grim, loose and coated in guano, it is possible to place gear on this section but you will have to dig around a wee bit. Anyway, ascend this easy scree to a large trapped block and the summit. (20m) Severe.

The north face holds a harder more committing route and the rock on this face is much better.

Starting at the left hand edge of the seaward platforms Place a good cam at head height and make a hard committing move up onto a good ledge. Follow a steep ascending traverse left onto the north face to a large horizontal spike of rock at the bottom of a huge detached flake. From here climb direct to the summit, almost inside the flake. A Family Affair. * HVS 5B.

DESCENT: Using the large trapped block at the top of the landward route for a bomber sling anchor, abseil down the landward route.

The Stack o' Roo (A Family Affair)

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