TG's lap of Scotland
Tom Ford finds out if Scotland has any decent driving roads...
Posted: 02 Oct 2013
A822 CRIEFF TO DUNKELD: MILES AND MILES OF LOVELY
So far, so good. The A7's a bit ordinary compared to some of the stuff we've just driven up, but it does the job. There's a huge temptation to visit Edinburgh, but we have to crack on, so it's another long loop around the A720 to the M8, then the M90 to Perth - bit of a diversion, this - so that we can run the A85 towards Crieff before picking up the A822 to Dunkeld. Then it's the A923 to Blairgowrie, and across east, marvelling at the traffic-free roads and rolling hills. And there are miles and miles of good roads. Exceptional roads. Roads you don't really find anywhere else.
So here's the thing. Once you start obsessing about particular bits of Scottish tarmac, you want to drive them again and again. But on the Lap, we can't. So we hoick back, grab the A90 and haul to Stonehaven, barely pausing for breath. Having stocked up on Jaffa Cakes, we run the A957 Stonehaven Slug Road to Crathes and then Banchory, pick up an old military road to Aboyne and then whip our way up to Ballater, Tomintoul, Grantown astride the Spey and, finally, Nairn. It's a tiring trip at this pace, with little relaxation, but the views and glorious roads are definitely worth it.