Mountain weather
Yellow warning

Yellow weather warning in force for North Grampian

North Grampian Mountain weather forecast table

Confidence

High confidence in general weather picture through until Thursday, when confidence decreases. Lower confidence on exact location and timing of strongest winds Tuesday into Wednesday.

Sunrise:
Sunset:

This evening forecast

Frequent showers, falling as snow above 600m, will continue through this evening and overnight. Accompanied by very strong westerly winds, reaching severe gale or perhaps storm force at height.

Sunrise:
Sunset:
Mountain hazards

Mountain weather hazards

Hazards apply at or above 300m, reflecting the more severe conditions which can occur at altitude.

hazard Severe Chill Effect
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.

hazard Gales
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.

hazard Blizzards
Blizzards and whiteouts present challenging and serious conditions due to a combination of falling or blowing snow, strong winds and cold temperatures. They can be highly disorientating, often resulting in near-zero visibility with limited or no visual references and no distinction between ground and sky. Cliff edges and cornices may not be apparent, even close up. These conditions require very good navigational skills.
hazard Storm Force Winds
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.
hazard Poor Visibility
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.

Mountain weather forecast

Early showers clearing to a mostly fine day, further rain later in the evening.

00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
Weather
(at 800m)
Heavy snow shower (night) Heavy snow shower (night) Partly cloudy (night) Sunny intervals Sunny intervals Sunny intervals Cloudy Heavy rain
Chance of precipitation
(at 800m)
70% 40% 20% 10% 10% 20% 30% 70%

Wind direction and speed (mph)
Altitude above mean sea level
00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1300m W
53
NW
56
NW
44
NW
30
NW
29
W
26
SW
28
SW
40
900m W
44
NW
45
NW
35
W
21
W
22
W
22
SW
25
SW
37
600m W
31
W
30
NW
22
W
14
W
16
W
14
SW
16
SW
25
300m W
18
NW
17
NW
13
SW
5
W
7
SW
7
SW
8
SW
13
Glen W
6
NW
6
NW
6
W
4
W
4
SW
4
SW
4
SW
6
Wind gust (mph)
Altitude above mean sea level
00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1300m 69 75 59 40 37 34 38 54
900m 57 59 46 29 29 28 32 48
600m 42 42 32 21 23 21 24 37
300m 38 39 31 12 16 17 20 30
Glen 33 34 29 22 19 17 17 26

Altitude above mean sea level
00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1300m
-6°
-5°
-5°
-5°
-5°
-4°
-4°
-3°
900m
-2°
-2°
-2°
-2°
-1°
-1°
-1°
600m
300m
Glen
Freezing Level
400m
600m
500m
500m
600m
700m
800m
1,000m

Altitude above mean sea level
00:00 03:00 06:00 09:00 12:00 15:00 18:00 21:00
1300m
-18°
-17°
-17°
-15°
-14°
-12°
-13°
-12°
900m
-13°
-12°
-11°
-10°
-9°
-8°
-8°
-8°
600m
-9°
-7°
-7°
-5°
-4°
-3°
-4°
-4°
300m
-4°
-3°
-3°
-1°
Glen
-2°
-1°
-2°
-1°

Additional weather information

Met Office Aberdeen meteorologist's view

Feeling very cold at height, particularly in strong winds.

Weather

Winds and showers, falling as snow above around 600m, will ease early on Monday morning to leave a mostly fine day with sunny spells. Clouding over from the west into the evening, with outbreaks of light rain, perhaps sleet at first, following behind. Rain turning heavier overnight.

Chance of cloud-free hill tops

20% through the early hours, increasing to 80% through the majority of the day, decreasing to 10% through the evening.

Low cloud and visibility

Low cloud and poor visibility in association with showers at first, patchy low cloud possibly at times around 600-800m but with good breaks and generally good visibility. Extensive low cloud during the evening with moderate or poor visibility.

Sunrise:
Sunset:

Mountain weather information

Weather

Very strong winds throughout with frequent showers, falling as snow above 400m, along with the risk of lightning and hail.

Chance of cloud-free hill tops

10-20% throughout.

Maximum wind speed expected

Westerly 20-30 mph gusting 45-55 mph through much of the day, increasing to 35-40 mph gusting 60-65 mph later in the evening.

Temperature

  • At 800m Plus 1 Celsius falling to minus 3 or 4.
  • Glen Plus 2 to 5 Celsius.
  • Freezing level Briefly 1400m during the early hours, falling to 400m soon after dawn.

Low cloud and visibility

Extensive broken cloud and poor visibility expected throughout the day, brief better interludes in any gaps between showers.

Mountain weather information

Wed 1 Feb

Sunrise:
Sunset:

Scattered showers at first, falling as snow above around 400m. Then largely dry and bright for most of the day. Freezing level 400-600m. Very strong westerly winds at first, soon easing.

Thu 2 Feb

Sunrise:
Sunset:

Low cloud with outbreaks of rain throughout the day, heavy at times. Freezing level 1500-2000m. Strong west to southwesterly winds.

Fri 3 Feb

Sunrise:
Sunset:

Perhaps some rain at first but a generally drier day. Freezing level around 2000m. Moderate to strong southwesterly winds.

Updated at:

Summit specific forecast

Mountain summit forecast map

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The North Grampian mountain weather forecast area includes much of the Cairngorms National Park which boasts five of the UK's six highest mountains and includes the largest areas of land in the UK above 2000 and 3000 feet. The Cairngorm Plateau is well-known for its extreme and very changeable weather (the strongest gust ever recorded in the UK was 173mph on Cairngorm Summit on 20th March 1986). Despite the challenging conditions, there is a diverse range of wildlife in the area including golden eagles, snow bunting and ptarmigan.   

Creag Meagaidh, to the north of Glen Spean, is where the east Highlands meet the west Highlands and is often exposed to bad weather from either direction. It is a popular area for ice climbing thanks to its vast plateau which includes five Munros (Scottish mountains over 3000 feet).

Ben Alder lies just to the west of Loch Ericht and is one of the remotest of the Munros. Approaches are long from all directions with options including a long walk or cycle from Dalwhinnie to the northeast or by taking a train to the very remote Corrour Station and walking in from the southwest.

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