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Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (75)
From:  Invergarry (NH307011)
To:  Uig (NG384635)
Distance:  99 miles (159.3 km)
Meets:  A82, A887, A890, A851, B8083, A863, B883, A855, B885, A850, B8036, A855, Pier
Former Number(s):  A887, A850, A856
Primary Destinations
Highway Authorities

Transport Scotland

Traditional Counties

Inverness-shire • Ross-shire

Route outline (key)
A87 Invergarry - Uig


The A87 running alongside Loch Duich
Main Article: A87 route

The A87 is in many ways as much of a 'Road to the Isles' as the A830 to the south. After leaving the A82 behind at Invergarry, it takes a dramatic route through wild desolation, finally reaching the coast at Shiel Bridge. However, this is just the head of one of the many deeply-indented Sea Lochs, and it's another 15 miles or more to Kyle. Here the Skye Bridge crosses to the Isle of Skye, and the A87 continues twisting and turning through the stunning scenery all the way to the ferry port of Uig!

A spectacular drive throughout, the A87 also enjoys the rare distinction of being one of only fourteen F99 roads to be a green-signed throughout its entire length. The others are the A12, A14, A16, A17, A22, A42, A43, A45, A53, A55, A75, A78, A83, A84, and A86.


One of the many pieces of road that the A87 has consumed over the years, this one on Skye.
Main Article: A87 history

The A87 is a very different road from that given the number in 1922. The section that would be most recognisable to those 'Men from the Ministry' is that leading through Invergarry village. After that almost all of the road is new-build, the rest widened or stolen from other routes!

Telford's Highland Roads

Main Article: Telford's Highland Roads

Before Thomas Telford arrived in the Highlands in the early 1800s, there was no proper road from the Great Glen west. This was often wild and inhospitable land, through which he pushed two routes and a later connecting road.

The A87 across Loch Loyne

Main Article: A87/Loch Loyne

When Loch Loyne was dammed in 1957, a new road was built to take the traffic away from the loch. Here we follow the old route, and on a cold crisp January day use the old road to cross the loch. A return trip in June explores the northern section to the Cluanie Inn.

Notable locations along the route

Skye Bridge

Main Article: Skye Bridge

For centuries, ferries had plied the narrows between Kyle of Lochalsh and Kyleakin on Skye. The existence of the Hotels on either side is evidence enough for this, but on top of that we have the slipways and queuing space. The Bridge changed the whole way of life in For the people of Skye and Lochalsh when it opened in 1995.

Uig - Harris Ferry

Main Article: Uig-Harris Ferry

From Uig, there are two ferry services crossing to the Western Isles Archipelago. This service crosses to Tarbert on Harris, and doesn't as yet provide a Sunday Crossing. It is therefore the last 6-day a week ferry service operated by Calmac.

Uig - North Uist Ferry

Main Article: Uig - North Uist Ferry

Operated in conjunction with the Harris Ferry (above), this service crosses The Minch to Lochmaddy on North Uist. It is the shortest of the three crossings from the 'Mainland' to the Uists and Barra, the other two operating out of Oban.

Opening Dates

(not comprehensive):

c1814InvergarryTomdoun JunctionRoad overseen by Thomas Telford, ran all the way to Kinloch Hourn.
c1816BunLoyneKyleRoad overseen by Thomas Telford, started in Invermoriston.
c1817TomdounCluanieRoad overseen by Thomas Telford, linking two routes above.
1927LuibStrollamus2.5 mile coast road via Dunan, Isle of Skye. Originally opened as A850.
1961Tomdoun JunctionBun LoyneNew route completed in February 1961 (per Hansard) to replace old route flooded by the construction of Loch Loyne Dam.
1964Druim nan Cleochd DiversionThe 4.6 mile road from Sconser Lodge to the head of Loch Ainort (south-west of Luib) was completed in 1964 per the 1964 Scottish Development Department Report. Contractor was J Baxter & Sons (Constructors) Ltd. of Muir of Ord., cost £312,000. The 3.75 mile improvement from Sligachan Hotel to Sconser Lodge was also completed, cost £231,000. Originally opened as A850.
1967Luib village DiversionIt is expected that this was part of the 4.64 mile reconstruction scheme between Loch Ainort and Strollamus, Isle of Skye, which was completed in 1967 per the 1967 Scottish Development Department Report.
1968Loch Cluanie ImprovementThe 8.55 mile upgrade from S1 to S2 with some diversions at a higher level from the loch shore was completed in 1968 per the 1968 Scottish Development Department Report..
1969DornieInverinateThe 3.26 mile diversion at the shore level of Loch Duich was completed by the end of 1969 per the 1969 Scottish Development Department Report. It bypassed the difficult twisting section at the higher level below Carr Brae.
1970Kyle of LochalshBalmacaraThe 3.25 mile diversion near the shore of Loch Alsh was completed by the end of 1970 per the 1970 Scottish Development Department Report. It bypassed the longer and steeper route via Erbusaig.
1970BalmacaraDornieThe 4.12 mile improvement was completed by the end of 1970 per the 1970 Scottish Development Department Report. It included diversions at Kirkton, Auchtertyre and Ardelve.
1970BorveKingsburghThe 5 mile reconstruction with some diversions on Isle of Skye was completed in 1970 per the 1970 Scottish Development Department Report. It was originally A856.
1972Clachan Duich Bridge and Causeway1.92 mile scheme with a 0.4 mile long causeway across the head of Loch Duich with bridges over Allt a Chruinn and the River Croe, and associated improvements near Kintail Lodge and Inverinate. Contractor was William Briggs Construction of Dundee, contract price £440,000. It completed the reconstruction of A87 to S2 over the 50 mile length from Kyle of Lochalsh to Invergarry.
1977BorveUigThe 5 mile scheme with diversions was work in progress in 1977 per the 1977 Scottish Development Department Report, but was not on the 1978 report indicating completion in 1977. Opened as A856.
1980sShiel BridgeKyleMany sections realigned, new roads from Keppoch to Dornie and Balmacara to Kyle.
1995KyleUigWith the opening of the Skye Bridge, the A87 was extended across the Isle of Skye to Uig.

Related Pictures
View gallery (75)
A87 Skye - Coppermine - 6951.jpgA87 Skye Bridge - Coppermine - 1317.jpgA87 Portree to Uig road - Geograph - 1649119.jpgAllt a Chaorainn Bhig - Geograph - 466152.jpgA87 Sligachan - Buses stopping on carriageway.jpg
Other nearby roads
Kyle of Lochalsh
A850 • A855 • B883 • B885 • B887 (Skye)
The First 99           A1  •  A2  •  A3  •  A4  •  A5  •  A6  •  A7  •  A8  •  A9  • A10 • A11 • A12 • A13 • A14 • A15 • A16 • A17 • A18 • A19
A20 • A21 • A22 • A23 • A24 • A25 • A26 • A27 • A28 • A29 • A30 • A31 • A32 • A33 • A34 • A35 • A36 • A37 • A38 • A39
A40 • A41 • A42 • A43 • A44 • A45 • A46 • A47 • A48 • A49 • A50 • A51 • A52 • A53 • A54 • A55 • A56 • A57 • A58 • A59
A60 • A61 • A62 • A63 • A64 • A65 • A66 • A67 • A68 • A69 • A70 • A71 • A72 • A73 • A74 • A75 • A76 • A77 • A78 • A79
A80 • A81 • A82 • A83 • A84 • A85 • A86 • A87 • A88 • A89 • A90 • A91 • A92 • A93 • A94 • A95 • A96 • A97 • A98 • A99
Motorway sectionsA1(M): (South Mimms - Baldock • Alconbury - Peterborough • Doncaster Bypass • Darrington - Birtley)
A3(M) • A8(M) Baillieston spur • A38(M) • A48(M) Cardiff spur • A57(M) • A58(M) • A64(M) • A66(M) • A74(M) • A92(M)
DefunctA1(M) Newcastle CME • A2(M) Medway Towns Bypass • A4(M) • A5(M) • A8(M) Renfrew bypass • A14 • A14(M) • A18(M) • A20(M) • A36(M)
A40(M): (Westway • Denham -Stokenchurch) • A41(M) • A42 • A46(M) • A48(M): (Port Talbot bypass • Morriston bypass) • A62(M) • A88 • A99
UnbuiltA2(M) Rochester Way Relief Road • A6(M): (Western route • Eastern route) • A14(M) (Expressway) • A34(M) • A48(M) Llantrisant Radial • A59(M) • A61(M)

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