Lightning 'gouged channels' into Scottish mountain

Image source, Allan Macleod
Image caption,
Channels and dislodged boulders were found near the summit of Leum Uilleim

What is believed to be evidence of a lightning strike has been found on a remote Highlands mountain.

Channels have been found gouged into the ground and washing machine-sized boulders dislodged near the top of 909m (2,982ft) Leum Uilleim.

Allan Macleod, head stalker at Corrour Estate, said at first glance it looked like the damage was caused by a large mechanical digger.

But he said this was impossible given the location.

The nearest place people can reach the mountain is more than a mile away at Corrour Station, one of the UK's most remote and highest railway stations. There is track, but not a public road to the station.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Possible evidence of a lightning strike was found at Corrour, a remote location in the Highlands

Leum Uilleim, which overlooks sprawling Rannoch Moor, is a Corbett, which are Scottish mountains of between 762m (2,500ft) and 914m (3,000ft).

Mr Macleod said he believed the only plausible explanation for the damage was a lightning strike.

Image source, Allan Macleod
Image caption,
The damage was found on a remote mountain top

He said there appeared to be a point of impact near the mountain's summit. The channels began less than a metre away and may have followed small water courses on the hillside.

Mr Macleod said: "The boulders were two or three feet square in size and the channels in the ground were up to 40ft long.

"Also, any diggers working on Corrour I would have known about, especially in such a remote location."

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