Schamel's modified Korteweg-de Vries–Zakharov–Kuznetsov (S-ZK) equation, governing the behavior of long wavelength, weak nonlinear ion acoustic waves propagating obliquely to an external uniform static magnetic field in a plasma consisting of warm adiabatic ions and non-thermal electrons (due to the presence of fast energetic electrons) having vortex-like velocity distribution function (due to the presence of trapped electrons), immersed in a uniform (space-independent) and static (time-independent) magnetic field, admits solitary wave solutions having a sech4 profile. The higher order stability of this solitary wave solution of the S-ZK equation has been analyzed with the help of multiple-scale perturbation expansion method of Allen and Rowlands (Allen, M. A. and Rowlands, G. 1993 J. Plasma Phys. 50, 413; 1995 J. Plasma Phys. 53, 63). The growth rate of instability is obtained correct to the order k2, where k is the wave number of a long wavelength plane wave perturbation. It is found that the lowest order (at the order k) instability condition is strongly sensitive to the angle of propagation (δ) of the solitary wave with the external uniform static magnetic field, whereas at the next order (at the order k2) the solitary wave solutions of the S-ZK equation are unstable irrespective of δ. It is also found that the growth rate of instability up to the order k2 for the electrons having Boltzmann distribution is higher than that of the non-thermal electrons having vortex-like distribution for any fixed δ.