Highlands & Islands

Horses rescued from frozen loch on Black Isle

Ice in Canna Bay, Canna. Pic: NTS
Image caption Ice in Canna Bay, Canna, with the snow covered mountains of Skye in the background

Two horses have been rescued from a frozen loch as snow and freezing conditions continued to affect schools and travel in the Highlands.

Inverness Coastguard and firefighters went to the aid of the animals at Rosehaugh Estate in the Black Isle.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said they were alerted at 1420 GMT and the horses were pulled from the loch alive within an hour.

Five roads in the Highlands were badly affected by wintry conditions.

Police said the B9007 Carrbridge to Ferness, A836 Altnaharra to Tongue, B9176 Skiach to Ardchronie, B885 Portree to Straun and Uig to Brogaig roads were shut.

Snow and ice also affected more than 50 schools in the Highlands.

Many of the schools were closed, while others were open to pupils and staff who could travel in safely.

Rail services between Inverness and Wick and Inverness and Kyle of Lochalsh were cancelled.

ScotRail has advised passengers to make their own alternative transport arrangements as no replacement transport was available.

Leg injury

Canna Bay on the island of Canna in the Hebrides has frozen over for only the third time in living memory, according to the National Trust for Scotland.

The trust has looked after the isle since 1981.

Manager Stewart Connor said: "It's unusual for Canna to experience such low temperatures.

"While the bay did start to freeze over last year, it wasn't as bad as this."

He added: "Over the last week or so, we've also had some snow, but this melted quickly and didn't cause any of the disruption that the mainland has experienced.

"It did last long enough though for the children to get a few snowmen built, which in itself is a rare experience on Canna."

Meanwhile, it has emerged that amid wintry conditions on Saturday two police officers were injured when their car crashed near the Kessock Bridge, Inverness.

The officers were responding to a report of a drink-driver who collided with a barrier on the A9.

One of the men was treated for a serious leg injury and the other for minor injuries.

Northern Constabulary said the incident would be investigated.

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