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Weather in Scotland

My husband & I (we are in our Mid to late 60’s) will be in Scotland end of August to beginning of September. The average temps show between 55-65 degrees. A friend told me I better bring a warm jacket for the highlands(Skye, north Kessock, Fort William, Inverness & Edinburgh-Tattoo). Not in that order. Would I need anything heavier than a windbreaker? I’m bring cargo & nylons pants for walking around and hiking along with waterproof sneakers. I thought I would throw in a Merino wool sweater or Cashmere. So would that be enough with a windbreaker or should I bring something warmer like a packable puffer jacket? We are also going to the Lake District.?

Thanks for any assistance. Please be nice.

Posted by
375 posts

We were in Glencoe and Fort William last year in early September. I brought a packable down jacket, cashmere sweater, wool hat and gloves. I did not regret it. Temps might sound warm but it’s the wind which got into my bones.

Posted by
1156 posts

The UK can be chilly and it can be cold and rainy. It can also be sunny and warm. But I would bring a good jacket with a good hood because when it rains and it is windy an umbrella is useless, but a hood is the best defense. I would also bring leggings to wear under the nylon pants as it can be again, chilly and cold. This is Scotland, not Italy, so expect rainy, chilly, windy weather and be happy when you have good weather. It is not all that bad, but be prepared for cool weather and layer. Bring light weight gloves and a hat. Also bring two pairs of shoes, so if one gets wet, you can wear the other and dry off. I was in Edinburgh and it was cool, then warm in the afternoon, then cool again in the evenings. As they say, if you don't like the weather, wait ten minutes and it will change again!

Layering is the key and just a windbreaker is not enough. Have a great time as it is a lovely country and the Lake District is beautiful.

Posted by
447 posts

Depends on your definition of wind breaker. The thin single layer type - no. A lined rain proof jacket with a hood that's roomy enough for a base layer t-shirt and fleece or sweater might do it.

About froze my hind end off in Edinburgh in late June a few years ago. I had brought a knit jacket and rain poncho. Had to buy a fleece pullover on sale worn under the jacket. Barely okay until we got to Wales and the Lake District with several days of rain. Ended up buying a rain jacket. This while there were heat waves in southern England.

Layer layer layer.

Posted by
440 posts

Good advice above. I live on Skye. Year round I wear thin, quick drying layers, including thin fleeces, wicking base layers and a good jacket. You will want a windproof, waterproof jacket with a hood, hat, gloves and many layers. Of course we could have a heat wave, but we probably won't. An umbrella is of no use at all because of the wind. If you are planning on any real hiking then you will want boots rather than sneakers - something with good ankle support. Hiking paths (where they exist) are generally rough, boggy and stony.

Best wishes
Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
1038 posts

Lived there for many years, and still visit occasionally.
Layers!
Hat, gloves and scarf as well.
Scotland gets really windy, and that's what will chill you.
Also: you'll need a cushion to sit on at the tattoo!!
Hard, cold seats there!

Posted by
25 posts

Thank you all for your excellent advice. I am already reevaluating my packing. Changing my shoes too. Thanks for the advice on hat, gloves & scarf. Well, I always bring large scarves but hadn’t thought about hat & gloves. Definitely bringing leggings for under pants.

Posted by
25 posts

I just bought a pair of waterproof hiking shoes by Teva. Waiting for delivery.

Posted by
15 posts

How did you like your waterproof hiking boots from Teva? I love their sandals & have worn them traveling in hot climates. I just had to reschedule my planned April/May 2020 trip to U.K. for 2021, so I’m continuing to refine my plans and wardrobe. Was hoping not to carry heavy hiking boots in my luggage. Are the Teva boots heavy & bulky? I had planned to just wear my lightweight, waterproof NIKE shoes, but I’m having second thoughts after hearing the comments here.
Thanks, Janet

Posted by
25 posts

JM TRaveler. I returned the Teva Hiking boots because there were too tight across the front of my foot and they have absolutely no Foot support. I tried adding dr. Sholl’s inserts but it wasn’t enough. These were the ankle high type. They were just uncomforable. I ended up buying the Solomon waterproof hiking shoe, it is. Or ankle high but they are cute enough to wear around town plus being waterproof. I got the blue ones, they look more like denim. They actually look more like a tennis shoe. I have been doing my walks in them from the start, no foot problems. Very comfortable. And btw, I had never heard of the brand before so I was apprehensive about buying them.

Posted by
25 posts

Hi all, I hope everyone is doing ok in these very troubling and scary times. Good health to all of you. Well, in case you didn’t know, The Military Tattoo was cancelled. We still have all of our reservations and so far, the Jacobite train will start running May 25. I’ll keep my fingers crossed on that one. Right now, British Airways will not even talk about trips scheduled in August until June 1 at this time. We are still debating whether to go . If we go we thought we would change to only one night in Edinburgh and use the other 2 nights going up to Orkney Islands, then on to Portree as previous planned. We’ll just have to see the military tattoo some other time or not at all. So at this point in time, during this lockdown. We are waiting to see what BA will do with the flights. I assume it will greatly depend on whether England opens up for travel and also how the status of USA. I guess we just have to wait.

STAY SAFE AND SOCIAL DISTANCE

Posted by
15 posts

Hi Sewscana, Thanks for the hiking boot evaluation. Will check out the Solomon boots. Solomon makes a lot of ski equipment. If you aren’t a skier that may be why you had not heard of them. DO hope things will open up so you can take your trip this year! A couple of tidbits for you. I was planning to go to the Orkney Islands on my cancelled trip. I found out about the Day Ferry/Tour out of John O Groats. It is run by the ferry company. They take you over on the first ferry and then transport to the most popular sites, include lunch, and return to John O Groats on the last ferry. When I compared the cost for that vs. paying for ferry to take rental car there, figuring ou out our schedule to meet the ferry schedule, gas for car, figuring out where to drive to the places, etc I think it is a good value. We were planning to stay 2nights in an AirBnB in Keiss (next to John O Groats) the night before Orkney trip & night when we return - so we don’t have to pack up for two one night stays. Let me know if you want any details.

You may want to check this site too: midgeforecast.co.uk. Not sure when “midge season” is on Isle of Skye or other areas, but might be handy to know :)

Posted by
1648 posts

We spent a wonderful 10 days in Scotland one April. Layers are a good idea. I wanted to buy a wool sweater anyway and found a great one in the Burroughs in Glasgow.

I'm reminded of the story of the Londoner who had to spend a month in Fort William on business. Fort William sits at the end of two Lochs, one that runs east-west and the other north-south. After two weeks of Fort William weather, on a windy/rainy/cold day, he stopped a boy in the street. He asked: "Sonny, is the weather always like this in Fort William?" The boy replied: "How would I know Mister? I'm only 8 years old!"

Posted by
25 posts

Doug MAC, joke was funny. Thanks. We are going to cancel our trip this year because the military tattoo was cancelled. We will go next year barring very thing is hopefully back to as normal as possible or at least a new normal. I hope everyone is staying healthy and safe.

Posted by
893 posts

I travelled from London to Edinburgh with many stops in between at the end of May a few years ago.
I froze in London two days and died of the heat for the other two day. I froze in Oxford and on the isle of Sky. I roasted in Edinburgh in 85 degrees.
Layer!