It is looking “increasingly unlikely” the military will need to provide a vessel to replace a key Highlands ferry route, according to the local council.
The Corran Ferry route is currently only carrying foot passengers to the Ardnamurchan peninsula after a relief vessel broke down.
This means drivers face a 42-mile round trip rather than the five-minute ferry crossing of Loch Linnhe.
A reduced service has been running on the five-minute crossing of Loch Linnhe since January as the main ferry on the Highland Council service was taken off for repairs.
In April, a team from the Ministry of Defence was called in to assess if the military could provide a replacement service until Highland Council’s service is restored.
This could have been provided via landing craft operated by the UK military.
However, Highland Council has now said one of its own vessels will be returning in early June and the military help would likely not be needed.
A spokesman said: “Discussions with the Ministry of Defence around options for the Corran Ferry service have been extremely positive however, it is looking increasingly unlikely that we will pursue this option.
“We are still anticipating the return of one of our vessels in early June.”