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991.2GTS
Nürburgring


Joined: 02 Apr 2019
Posts: 478
Location: Yorkshire


PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 10:31 pm    Post subject: Scotland Road Trip - A838 v A836 Reply with quote

We’re doing a road trip in late June, and wanted to get some thoughts on a couple of route options.

Currently we’ve pencilled in the route south from Durness towards Inverness using the A836 from Tongue to Lairg. However, there’s also the option of doubling back to Laxford Bridge then taking the A838 to Lairg via Loch Shin.

Any thoughts on those two routes?
 
  
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J80 EWN
Newbie


Joined: 17 Nov 2019
Posts: 33
Location: Scottish Highlands


PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interested to hear any opinion on this also. Although i live in Inverness, I have never driven either of those 2 roads , Ive always stuck to the coastal route or used the A836 from Tain to Invershin then head to the West coast over the A837,

Although single track for the duration the A836 and A838 id imagine will be a lot quieter, as the NC500 will be starting to get busy by the end of June ....both took to have stunning scenery on google street view and surfaces dont look too bad , Hopefully someone who has diven them recently can comment but if not i'll take a recce for you in April and report back , good excuse to take the Mrs up to Durness for night Thumb
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mikeluke
Watkins Glen


Joined: 03 Jun 2014
Posts: 2013
Location: Hampshire


PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like Scotland will be a popular destination this summer!
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J80 EWN
Newbie


Joined: 17 Nov 2019
Posts: 33
Location: Scottish Highlands


PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mikeluke wrote:
Sounds like Scotland will be a popular destination this summer!


Its just gotten busier and busier since the "Branding" in 2015, I now try to plan any long runs early or late in the season to avoid the peak times over the summer, so many large motorhomes and single track roads can make for a frustrating journey. : frustrated
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991.2GTS
Nürburgring


Joined: 02 Apr 2019
Posts: 478
Location: Yorkshire


PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

J80 EWN wrote:
Interested to hear any opinion on this also. Although i live in Inverness, I have never driven either of those 2 roads , Ive always stuck to the coastal route or used the A836 from Tain to Invershin then head to the West coast over the A837,

Although single track for the duration the A836 and A838 id imagine will be a lot quieter, as the NC500 will be starting to get busy by the end of June ....both took to have stunning scenery on google street view and surfaces dont look too bad , Hopefully someone who has diven them recently can comment but if not i'll take a recce for you in April and report back , good excuse to take the Mrs up to Durness for night Thumb


Thanks, any info would be much appreciated. I’ve read a couple of things elsewhere about fish lorries on the A838 being a bit of an issue, but other than that, there’s not much info out there.
 
  
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peterzoom
Monza


Joined: 25 Jul 2016
Posts: 246


2001 Porsche 996 Carrera 4

PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The A836 and A838 are quite similar but also entertaining in their own way.

They do track in the same direction and drift towards each other on occasion.
We drove them both last year and unless there has been serious weather inflicted surface changes, the tarmac was very decent indeed.

Lovely views, and an interesting and involving drive whichever you choose.
Do both, spend some time just enjoying your time on the ground. If you don't you will always be thinking " I wonder what the other route would have been like?"

Usual B road rules apply, of course, keep your focus, stay alert, keep track of passing places and make certain you have more than enough fuel on board. You will be surprised just how much fuel you can go through when having fun!
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991.2GTS
Nürburgring


Joined: 02 Apr 2019
Posts: 478
Location: Yorkshire


PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

peterzoom wrote:
The A836 and A838 are quite similar but also entertaining in their own way.

They do track in the same direction and drift towards each other on occasion.
We drove them both last year and unless there has been serious weather inflicted surface changes, the tarmac was very decent indeed.

Lovely views, and an interesting and involving drive whichever you choose.
Do both, spend some time just enjoying your time on the ground. If you don't you will always be thinking " I wonder what the other route would have been like?"

Usual B road rules apply, of course, keep your focus, stay alert, keep track of passing places and make certain you have more than enough fuel on board. You will be surprised just how much fuel you can go through when having fun!


Thanks. I’m not sure we’ll have time to do both. But we’ll see.
 
  
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fastlowe
Trainee


Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 78
Location: Norwich


PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was thinking about going to Scotland in early October and doing the costal route. Would this be a bit late ? Im worried about the midges , my missus is allergic !!
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J80 EWN
Newbie


Joined: 17 Nov 2019
Posts: 33
Location: Scottish Highlands


PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 6:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fastlowe wrote:
I was thinking about going to Scotland in early October and doing the costal route. Would this be a bit late ? Im worried about the midges , my missus is allergic !!


If you're planning staying in guest houses/hotels, October should still be fine, but maybe getting a bit late for camping though , Midgies should have died a death by then thumbsup
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fastlowe
Trainee


Joined: 22 Feb 2009
Posts: 78
Location: Norwich


PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ha , thanks for that I'll start looking thumbsup
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James M-S
Suzuka


Joined: 11 Apr 2017
Posts: 1133
Location: Derbyshire

2009 Porsche 997 Carrera 2

PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fastlowe wrote:
I was thinking about going to Scotland in early October and doing the costal route. Would this be a bit late ? Im worried about the midges , my missus is allergic !!


Pine scented ‘skin so soft’ by Avon is recommended by my wife (from the highlands and forced on many camping holidays to the west coast as a child).

Midges won’t land on it.
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Methodman
Silverstone


Joined: 29 Apr 2011
Posts: 135
Location: Aberdeen


PostPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you're heading up this way I highly recommend the B974 'Old Military Road' as it's known, you won't be disappointed Smile Thumb
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991.2GTS
Nürburgring


Joined: 02 Apr 2019
Posts: 478
Location: Yorkshire


PostPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Methodman wrote:
If you're heading up this way I highly recommend the B974 'Old Military Road' as it's known, you won't be disappointed Smile Thumb


We’re stopping overnight in Forres, and then planning on taking the A939 thru Grantown-on-Spey and on to Bridge of Gairn. Before turning onto the A93 to Bridge of Cally. Would you suggest we do the B974 instead?
 
  
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Methodman
Silverstone


Joined: 29 Apr 2011
Posts: 135
Location: Aberdeen


PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm pretty sure that route you'll be taking will take you on the B974 anyway (worth a google though) so you may have scored with two excellent roads there, amazing views as well! Thumb
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