Last night coming back from Portavadie we saw a big fire on Bute, clearly burning out of control amongst the heather and gorse.
Around lunchtime today Cathleen noticed that there was a heavy pall of smoke coming from that direction, though we cannot see the island directly from where we live. Shortly after we began to smell burning.
Friends came in for a cup of tea mid afternoon and said that they had seen flames on Bute as they came over the high road from Tighnabruaich so later Cathleen and I drove back that way to see what was happening.
The smoke by now was very thick at the mouth of Loch Riddon but when we got clear of it we could see that last night's fire had spread north and down the hills and was also in the process of spreading eastwards.
My main photo shows some of the detail - lines of burning grass and many different seats of fire. My two extra photos zoom in and out - one is of the detail of the fire rising up a steep incline amongst trees, the other is a wide shot of the island though there was more smoke out of shot at either side.
As I post this the smell of burning continues to be strong though the brown cloud has dissipated a bit. I have however seen no reporting of what seems to me to be a fairly major incident.
The last recommended legal day for muirburn was Monday so if this was a deliberate setting for that purpose it was illegal as well as very irresponsible given the very dry spell we have been experiencing. If it was accidental then it just shows how careful people need to be this holiday weekend.