F is for Fog

We have the most amazing weather up here on Shetland.  Stunning crisp winter days, still summer evenings when the sea is mirror-flat and the midges eat you alive when you step outside the door.  Amazing storms, lashing the sea into white fury and blowing you off your feet.  And then we get fog.

Fog in Shetland comes in several distinct types.  You’ve got the localised type – Gulberfog as we call it.  You can be buried in fog in Gulberwick while just over the hill in Lerwick it’s bright sunshine.  You get the half-island type – normally the fog sits on the east coast and by the time you’re over the hill to Scalloway or anywhere else on the west side, it’s clear and lovely.  And then you get the all-island blanket.  That’s what we’re sat under now.

HIAL’s (Highlands and Islands Airports Limited) website makes for depressing reading this morning – delayed, delayed, delayed, turned round and gave up, delayed…  And we’re supposed to be on a flight out tomorrow.  A quick check of the Met Office’s predictions shows that the wind is dropping, no chance of this stuff blowing away.  Best we can hope is that it’ll burn off, that the weather will do a U-turn and the fog will clear.  Right now, there’s nothing we can do to change anything.

Until tomorrow, all we can do is prepare for the holiday as if nothing is wrong.  We’ll deal with the weather as it comes.

Sometimes, life on Shetland is amazing.  But you can never, ever, prepare for the weather.

4 responses to “F is for Fog”

  1. The fog I could deal with, but not the midges. Why are they so prevalent there and not further south? Is it the temperature or the stuff they feed on? And what DO they feed on? Hope you get off the ground soon. Have a great holiday.

    • We’ve got all day for the fog to clear, so fingers crossed. Looks like planes are starting to land, just not a lot getting off so I suspect the weather’s PBA down in Aberdeen.

      And Midges? Evil little buggers up here. Insect repellent just annoys them and marks you out as a target! They feed on anything with warm blood, as far as I can tell. I you’re having a braai up here you need just the right amount of wind – enough to move the midges on but not enough to blow the braai away!

  2. Surely leaving shouldn’t be a problem, even if finding the islands the sky is impossible! Where are you heading?

    • True, even if they can’t really see the end of the runway they can get a kite into the sky, the problem is landing the buggers in the first place. If the plane doesn’t come in from Edinburgh, it can’t take off and head back there. Heading to Arles-sur-tech, just north of the Spanish border, just south of Carcassonne. We’ll be around Yorkshire for the show if you’re in?

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