Severe gales with winds up to 70mph that could fell trees and disrupt travel will batter most of Scotland on Thursday, the Met Office warned today.
The agency issued a yellow - “be aware” - alert which will be in force from 1am to 8pm for the whole of the country apart from the far south west.
The Met Office said the strongest winds were likely across the north west, with winds reaching 55-60mph elsewhere.
A spokeswoman said: “Please be aware that potential impacts could include minor travel disruption with some bridge restrictions, and possible damage to trees and structures.
“Additionally, large waves will build off northern and western coasts with the risk of some wave overtopping.
“Areas exposed to the north west are expected to see the strongest winds, but winds may also funnel through the Central Belt at times bringing a risk of disruption here too.”
The agency said the gales would be caused by a “vigorous” area of low pressure passing to the north of Scotland from late Wednesday.
Earlier, ferry operator CalMac cancelled a number of Tuesday services and warned of high winds affecting much of its Clyde and Hebrides ferries network.
ScotRail has advised its customers to check journey information before travelling.
CalMac operations director Drew Collier said: “There is a high likelihood that services will experience weather related disruption across the Clyde and Hebrides routes this week with the worst of the weather due to hit Tuesday and Wednesday.
“People should look at the forecast carefully before travelling and check their arrangements if they plan to travel with us.
“Our website and our social media feeds have the very latest information on what is running and when. We may well amend timetables to work round the worst of the weather to keep routes running, so I would urge people to double check with us before setting off on their journey.”