|Stoer lighthouse:||OS Sheet 15; NC 004330|
|Old Man of Stoer:||OS Sheet 15; NC 016353|
|Our Visits:||August 1992
17 August 1994
An alternative to the main A837 road east by Loch Assynt, a minor road, the B869 turns north just outside Lochinver and follows the northern coastline to Kylesku. 8 km along this road, just beyond the village of Stoer, a side road takes you onto the Stoer Peninsula.
Unlike other areas in Assynt this small area in somewhat more fertile and as a consequence there are more crofts, and more roads, covering the ground. There is a further sandy beach at Balcladich Bay, but the main attraction here is the road that leads to the lighthouse and the cliff walk to the Old Man of Stoer, a 200ft stack, 3 km beyond. When visiting the area a stroll along this coastline is recommended, and to get the best of the views you will need to choose a day when the mountains are not shrouded in mist. The stack is popular to the rock climbing fraternity and you will often find, as shown here, parties crossing the intervening water and ascending the Old Man.
The Stoer lighthouse sits on top of a sandstone cliff 100ft high at the end of the road; there is convenient parking . A path continues north climbing over cliffs up to 300ft high; a popular nesting site for fulmars and other seabirds. Just short of the northern point the path drops slightly to the impressive stack of the Old Man of Stoer. This is a popular climbing route and you can often sit and watch an ascent being made.
You can continue the walk around the northern point to the eastern side, the cliffs are slightly lower at 200ft and being on the leaward side not as dramatic. If you follow the coast 2km to the east you will find a natural arch, just north of the scattered cottages of Culkein. A track runs back across the headland back to the starting point.
An alternative viewpoint is the trig point at the highest point on the peninsula, Sidhean Mor. Only 400m in from the coastline to gives a full panorama of the mountains to the west. Having ignored our own advice, we have tended to visit the site when the weather is too bad for the hills - and hence not actually seen the full extent of the view. Perhaps one day.