A remote harbor near Inverness might seem an unlikely gauge for the oil price crash but the freezing waters of the Cromarty Firth have become a worrying barometer for energy veterans.
More than a dozen offshore oil rigs, each weighing thousands of tonnes, have been quietly parked in the Scottish firth, the highest number in more than a decade, after a plunge in crude prices that has nearly killed North Sea exploration.
Two rigs have been towed away to be scrapped in Turkey, while more are expected to arrive in the coming weeks and months, threatening to fill the inlet to capacity.
The port itself, normally filled with cruise ships from spring to autumn, is considering a move into oil and gas decommissioning.
Brent crude has plummeted from a summer 2014 peak of more than $115 a barrel to less than $30, hit by a US supply glut and weaker Chinese demand.
"In previous oil crashes there has been a sense that it will come good again — maybe in 18 months the price will bounce back," says Bob Buskie, chief executive of the Cromarty Firth Port Authority.
"But people have lost sight of the dynamic between Saudi [Arabia] not adjusting output and America still throwing money at the fracking game.
We have ended up awash with oil."