It was Halloween and, appropriately enough, the wild and near-unplayable overhead conditions made it a hair-raising afternoon for all involved.
It was unsettling enough for reporters clinging to wet laptops against powerful gusts of wind and rain battering the very back of the Caledonian Stadium main stand.
For the Caley Thistle players, it could easily have turned into a costly and damaging ordeal.
The hosts would fall behind to Arbroath in the first half, with two seasoned campaigners in Bobby Linn and Kris Doolan linking superbly to create the lead after 24 minutes.
It took depths of resolve and determination to battle back after the break, but a rapid-fire equaliser from Daniel Mackay after the restart certainly helped.
From there, the atrocious conditions only worsened but finally aided the home side by adding venom to Scott Allardice’s incredible strike for the second goal.
It then fell to Nikolay Todorov to wrap up the win with his third goal in three games.
Despite the happy outcome, it was a match a shivering John Robertson said after full-time should never have been started or allowed to continue.
“I don’t understand why that game was played in these conditions,” the Inverness manager said.
“Underfoot conditions are important and the pitch was great, but you can’t ask professional footballers to go and play in that wind. It’s a nonsense.
“You’re talking 40-50 mph gusts there. I don’t think the game should have gone ahead, but we got on with it.”
The hosts, having missed nine senior players the previous week, welcomed back four.
Captain Sean Welsh slotted straight back into the starting line-up, while Danny Devine, James Keatings and Aaron Doran returned to the bench.
Arbroath also made four changes but the one that proved influential in the first half was the return of veteran Linn.
On more than a couple of occasions, he tested Caley Thistle down the left after an opening period when the players struggled to adjust the crazy conditions.
One minute the swirling wind would be battering in home faces and the next it would veer around and send an Arbroath high ball hurtling towards their own goalkeeper.
Caley Thistle’s younger players were looking sharp with the ball on the ground, but faced a mighty physical test from the Red Lichties who were unceremonious in crashing into challenges.
On one occasion after 13 minutes, the lively Roddy MacGregor was too easily muscled off the ball before Arbroath’s Hearts loanee Connor Smith sliced his opportunity well wide.
The likes of MacGregor, Daniel Mackay and Cameron Harper were certainly influential in taking the game to the visitors, but Caley Thistle badly needed some end-product.
That need became all the greater as a spell of Arbroath pressure brought the opener.
Linn used his speed and experience to catch out young Wallace Duffy, signed from St Johnstone in the summer, beating him on the left.
Wisely keeping his cross low in the conditions, Linn’s delivery beat the home defence and found Kris Doolan pouncing to score at the far post.
The wind only worsened at half-time, but Caley Thistle came storming back within two second half minutes.
A determined foray ended with full-back Duffy thumping the ball across from the right for Daniel Mackay to head high into the right hand corner of the net.
Somehow the conditions got even worse, but may have helped as the Highlanders dug out a lead.
From Kai Kennedy’s pass, Scott Allardice let rip from fully 35 yards, rocketing the ball into the roof of the net.
It was all over bar the shouting after 78 minutes when a finely-worked home move ended with Roddy MacGregor’s neat lay-off setting up Nikolay Todorov for a low-drilled finish 12 yards.
Manager Robetson was understandably delighted given the difficult circumstances.
“We showed character. The boys couldn’t head the ball, it was swirling everywhere.
“To keep it at 1-0 by the break was fine and we said that. But we asked them to press early and get an early equaliser – and we got it.
“It was just by doing simple things. We told them: no fancy football, get the ball into the box.
“Dan took his goal well and Scott has that in him. We see it in training from him all the time.
“That gave us a foothold to start playing. We got a wee bit nervous but the third goal was great composure from Roddy in the set-up and Todorov in the finish.
“We just had to battle today and credit to the lads.”