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Northwest Highlands - Mountain weather forecast

Weather warnings

Warnings affecting Northwest Highlands over the next 5 days

Confidence

High for mainly cloudy with occasional rain, this focused in the west and wintry at times across highest summits. Medium to low for timing and extent of heavier outbreaks from Friday and transition to a colder showery flow into the weekend.

  • This evening
  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Further outlook

Monday 25 March 2019

Sunset: 18:46
Moon phase: Waning gibbous

Quite cloudy tonight with a few isolated light outbreaks of rain or drizzle, largely confined to western ranges and falling as snow above 800m. However bases will be mostly above the summits.

Tuesday 26 March 2019

Weather hazards

Gales Medium 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.

Learn more about gales

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.

Learn more about severe chill effect

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.

Learn more about poor visibility

Headline

Cloudy with occasional rain, most persistent across western ranges. Summit gales.

Weather

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Weather at 800m Cloudy Cloudy Cloudy Light rain Light rain Heavy rain Light rain Light rain
Chance of precipitation at 800m 10% 10% 20% 30% 60% 80% 70% 60%

Wind speed and direction

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
1000m W 32 38 W 32 38 SW 37 44 SW 37 45 SW 39 47 SW 37 45 SW 36 44 SW 35 43
900m W 31 37 W 31 37 SW 35 42 SW 36 43 SW 37 45 SW 35 43 SW 35 42 SW 34 41
600m W 22 28 SW 21 28 SW 24 31 SW 26 34 SW 27 35 SW 25 33 SW 25 32 SW 24 31
300m W 7 25 W 7 25 SW 8 28 SW 10 30 SW 10 31 W 9 29 W 10 28 SW 9 26
Glen SW 7 19 SW 8 20 SW 10 24 SW 11 25 SW 11 25 SW 10 25 SW 8 21 SW 6 17

Temperature

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
1000m 0 ° -1 ° 0 ° 1 ° 2 ° 2 ° 3 ° 3 °
900m 0 ° 0 ° 1 ° 2 ° 2 ° 3 ° 3 ° 3 °
600m 3 ° 2 ° 3 ° 4 ° 5 ° 5 ° 5 ° 5 °
300m 5 ° 5 ° 5 ° 6 ° 7 ° 7 ° 7 ° 7 °
Glen 7 ° 7 ° 7 ° 8 ° 9 ° 9 ° 9 ° 9 °

Feels like temperature

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Altitude above mean sea level
1000m -9 ° -9 ° -9 ° -8 ° -7 ° -6 ° -5 ° -5 °
900m -8 ° -8 ° -8 ° -6 ° -6 ° -5 ° -4 ° -4 °
600m -4 ° -4 ° -4 ° -3 ° -2 ° -1 ° 0 ° 0 °
300m 3 ° 2 ° 2 ° 3 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 ° 4 °
Glen 5 ° 5 ° 4 ° 5 ° 6 ° 6 ° 7 ° 7 °

Freezing level

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Freezing level i 900 m 900 m 1,100 m 1,200 m 1,400 m 1,500 m 1,600 m 1,600 m
Sunrise: 06:08
Sunset: 18:48
Moon phase: Third quarter

Weather

Higher cloud thickening and lowering later in the night to increase the chance of isolated outbreaks of patchy light rain towards dawn, this winter above 800m. Rather cloudy through the day and evening with occasional outbreaks of rain, this mainly focused across northwestern peaks such as Assynt, particularly during the afternoon and evening where some heavier outbreaks will develop. Snow level 800m early morning, perhaps with some temporary whiteout conditions across highest peaks, but level lifting above all summits from the afternoon.

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

80% at first with bases generally 1000m plus, lowering by dawn 20% and 40% in west and east respectively as bases becomes broken or extensive from 450-600m and 600-900m respectively.

Visibility

Good or very good becoming poor or very poor in the rain and snow.

Met Office Aberdeen meteorologist's view

Most challenging conditions across western ranges, initially for highest peaks in any temporary whiteout conditions, also from the afternoon with more extensive hill fog and buffeting winds.

Wednesday 27 March 2019

Sunrise: 06:06
Sunset: 18:51
Moon phase: Third quarter

Weather

Drier than Tuesday with some brighter spells breaking through the rather cloudy skies, particularly towards the Black Isle, but some patchy light rain will again develop, again mainly focused across western ranges.

Maximum wind speed expected

West or Southwest 35mph with gusts 45-50mph over most exposed ridges and summits.

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

20% and 40% in west and east respectively with bases broken or extensive from 450-600m and 600-900m respectively.

Temperature

  • At 800m Plus 2-3C
  • Glen Plus 6C rising 10C during the afternoon, then lowering plus 8C late evening
  • Freezing level Just above highest summits

Visibility

Good or very good becoming poor or very poor in the rain.

Thursday 28 March 2019

Sunrise: 06:03
Sunset: 18:53
Moon phase: Third quarter

A rather cloudy start with some patchy light rain, again mainly across western peaks. Turning largely dry and increasingly bright into the afternoon.

Friday 29 March 2019

Sunrise: 06:00
Sunset: 18:55
Moon phase: Third quarter

Band of rain and summit snow and summit gales crossing erratically from the northwest during the day, bringing some heavy outbreaks for a time.

Saturday 30 March 2019

Sunrise: 05:57
Sunset: 18:57
Moon phase: Waning crescent

A showery and increasingly cold northwesterly flow becoming established, with snow expected to quite low levels, though timing uncertain at this juncture

Issued at:
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Separated from the Grampians by the Great Glen the region includes Sutherland, Ben Wyvis, Wester Ross, The Cuillin, Glen Affric, Glen Shiel and Knoydart.

The Cuillin Hills on the Isle of Skye are among the steepest mountains in the UK and include 15 peaks above 3,000 feet (900 metres). There are two main ridges; the magnificent Black Cuillins and the Red Cuillins around Loch Coruisk to the south.

Torridon has some of the most spectacular mountain scenery in Scotland which includes Beinn Eighe, a long ridge with many spurs and summits, two of which are classified as Munros. Beinne Eighe also includes Britain's first ever national nature reserve where you may spot golden eagles, buzzards, pine martins and wild cats on your travels.

For snow and avalanche hazard forecasts please visit Sportscotland Avalanche Information Service

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