When driving to Islay most people probably take the A82/A83 route from Glasgow. If you have a bit of spare time and the weather is nice I now recommend to take a detour via the A817 Haul Road (and A814) between Loch Lomond and Gare Loch / Loch Long. The views are fantastic, especially on the western part of the A817. The Arrochar Alps and other mountains line the horizon, a great view.
I had known about this route for many years, but for various reasons (in particular weather and time) had never got around to drive it. In June 2018 I had both the time as well as some decent weather, so I decided to go for it. Well worth it.
The bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, one of my favourite stops on the journey to Islay. Here seen from Firkin Point on a bright April day, the Arrochar Alps with some last snow in the distance on the left. The foot of Ben Lomond on the right.
An unusual post for an Islay pictures photoblog as this picture is approximately 60 miles as the crow flies away from Islay. However, this picture shows an area many people will travel through on the way to Islay. The view is from Beinn Narnain over Loch Long and Arrochar with Ben Lomond and Loch Lomond in the distance on the left. The A82 from Glasgow takes us up Loch Lomond before we turn onto the A83. At Ardgartan the A83 turns right to the Rest and Be Thankful, just behind the ridge on the right.