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Northwest Highlands


High for general forecast. Moderate for timing of any heavier rain Tuesday morning and for cloud extent Wednesday. Low for timing of change to much colder air late Thursday.

  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Further outlook

Monday 22 October 2018

Weather hazards

Gales High likelihood Hide detail

Gale force winds (gusts over 50mph) make walking difficult and strenuous with a potential to be blown over by gusts. There is often a marked increase in winds through cols or on exposed ridges and summits. Distances can take longer to cover and compass bearings become harder to follow accurately.

Storm force winds Medium likelihood Show detail

Storm force winds (gusts over 70mph) make walking very strenuous with any mobility virtually impossible over exposed ground. Where these conditions occur there is a high risk of being blown over and even standing may be impossible at times with a risk of being blown off one’s feet. Basic tasks such as using a map, eating, putting on extra clothing or communication become extremely difficult away from any shelter.

Severe chill effect Medium likelihood Show detail

Wind significantly lowers the ‘feels-like’ temperature relative to the actual temperature, with even moderate winds significantly adding to the chilling effect. Strong winds can result in a severe and debilitating wind chill many degrees below the actual temperature. This effect will be enhanced in rain or wet snow. Without protection, prolonged exposure could result in frost nip or frostbite on exposed parts of the body and/or hypothermia.

Poor visibility Medium likelihood Show detail

Poor visibility presents challenging route finding conditions. Visibility could be significantly less than 50 metres in all directions with few or no visual references, especially on featureless moors or plateaux. Distances become hard to judge and cliff or cornice edges can be difficult to recognise. These conditions require good navigational skills. There is a risk of white-out conditions when mist or fog is combined with extensive snow cover.

Heavy persistent rain Low likelihood Show detail

Heavy and persistent rain can lead to drenched clothing and footwear with waterproofs often becoming soaked through, especially if accompanied by strong winds. This can lead to significant loss of body heat and an increased likelihood of hypothermia. Terrain may turn increasingly boggy underfoot while streams can flood and become impassable. There may also be a risk of flooding in valleys or glens. If there is snow cover, a heightened avalanche hazard is possible and avalanche reports should be consulted where available.


Very cold with storm force winds across higher summits.

Weather at 800m

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Sleet shower Fog Cloudy Cloudy Fog Fog
60% 70% 10% 10% 20% 80%
Chance of precipitation
1,200 1,400 1,300 1,300 1,500 2,500
Freezing level (m)
The level above which snow is expected to settle or the ground is expected to be frozen

Wind speed and direction (mph) By altitude above mean sea level

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1000m W 48 56 W 48 58 W 52 65 W 56 70 W 56 71 W 53 67
900m W 46 54 W 46 56 W 51 63 W 54 69 W 55 69 W 51 65
600m W 32 39 W 34 43 W 38 50 W 42 55 W 42 55 W 39 52
300m W 8 37 W 11 39 W 14 46 W 15 49 W 15 50 W 13 47
Glen W 11 29 W 13 34 W 13 34 W 14 38 W 15 40 W 14 39

Temperature (°C) By altitude above mean sea level

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1000m 1 2 2 2 2 3
900m 2 3 3 3 3 4
600m 4 5 6 6 6 6
300m 7 7 8 8 8 8
Glen 9 10 11 11 11 11

Feels like temperature (°C) By altitude above mean sea level

06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1000m -8 -7 -7 -7 -7 -6
900m -7 -6 -6 -6 -6 -4
600m -2 -1 -1 -1 -1 0
300m 4 5 5 5 5 5
Glen 6 7 9 9 8 8
Sunrise: 08:11   Sunset: 18:01
Moon phase: Waxing gibbous


Showers at first, wintry on the summits, then becoming dry for a time. Some sunny intervals toward Ben Wyvis. Thicker cloud brings persistent rain to the north in the evening, this becoming heavy over Ben Hope and Ben Loyal.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 800m

40% for much of the day, cloud frequent above 700-900m. Becoming nil in the evening, cloud persistent above 400-500m.


Good at low levels through the day, often poor at height. Becoming very poor overnight, dropping to a few km's or less at low levels.

Met Office Aberdeen meteorologist's view

Winds strongest across Assynt and far north. Wind speed increasing rapidly at summit level.

Tuesday 23 October 2018

Sunrise: 08:13   Sunset: 17:58
Moon phase: Full


Low cloud with persistent rain or drizzle throughout. Persistent heavy rain in the Northwest, especially Sutherland, with rapidly rising watercourses. The rain less heavy in the afternoon.

Maximum wind speed expected

West 50 mph gusting 70mph, but gusting 90 mph across higher summits and ridges, with a rapid increase in winds at summit level.

Chance of cloud-free mountain/hill tops at 800m

Nil, cloud extensive above 500m, often 300m or less near the west coast, particularly in the afternoon and evening.


  • At 800m Plus 6 Celsius
  • Glen Plus 8 Celsius rising to 12 Celsius
  • Freezing level Well above the summits


Very poor at height. A few km's or less in the glens.

Wednesday 24 October 2018

Sunrise: 08:15   Sunset: 17:56
Moon phase: Full

Low cloud for much of the day with patchy drizzle at times. Westerly gales at first, easing through the day. Freezing level above the summits.

Thursday 25 October 2018

Sunrise: 08:17   Sunset: 17:53
Moon phase: Full

Low cloud with patchy rain, turning heavier for a time before clearing to showers in the evening, snow above 700-800m. Strong westerly winds. Freezing level above the summits, falling to 900m late evening.

Friday 26 October 2018

Sunrise: 08:20   Sunset: 17:51
Moon phase: Full

Cold with sunny spells and snow showers, often heavy, frequent later in the day. Fresh to strong northwest becoming northerly winds. Freezing level around 500-700m.

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