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Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (11)
From:  Banavie (NN111769)
To:  Spean Bridge (W) (NN208824)
Via:  Gairlochy
Distance:  8.9 miles (14.3 km)
Meets:  A830, B8005, A82
Primary Destinations
Highway Authorities


Traditional Counties


Route outline (key)
B8004 Banavie - Spean Bridge

The B8004 runs parallel to the A82 as it heads north from Fort William to Spean Bridge. It is a highly scenic road with expansive views of mountains – primarily Ben Nevis and the Grey Corries – and the Canal and River Lochy as they meander through the Glen. The road is shown as little more than a track on the 1923 MoT map but it was still important enough to have been classified by 1932.

The road starts next to the Neptune's Staircase Locks on the Caledonian Canal at Banavie, between Caol and Corpach on the A830. The first 50 m of the road are a fairly new alignment, dating back to the improvements on the A830 in the 1960s. It then turns sharp right onto the old coach road from Fort William to Arisaig, which was realigned when the canal opened, and then a sharp left in front of the Moorings Hotel turns north up the Great Glen, and so on to the original route.

The road fluctuates between single-carriageway with passing places and two-way road throughout its length, but the first two miles north of Banavie are generally the narrowest. After leaving the edge of Fort William Behind, the road twists and turns through woodland, with a surprising number of houses nestled amongst the trees. Gaps in the trees offer some fine views across to Ben Nevis, particularly when heading south, while the canal and river can also be glimpsed snaking across the valley floor. After passing through the scattered settlement of Muirshearlich, the road curves around below a forestry plantation, before a sharp right turn drops it down towards its first significant junction at Loy Bridge. Here the dead-end Glen Loy road joins just before the crossing of the River Loy, while a track to the right follows the river under the canal and so into the Lochy beyond. Although the bridge is single track, the road either side is effectively S2 with good sight lines across the fields, offering a brief burst of acceleration between the slower bends.

The canal bridge at Gairlochy

The next mile or so to Moy Farm is mostly S2, but the twists and turns keep traffic slow. The old stone bridge at Moy is also single track, and built on a sweeping bend around the farm. Narrowing again, the road once more winds through patches of woodland before reaching the only other junctions on the route, where the two spurs of the B8005 Loch Arkaig road meet. Between the two, the B8004 plunges steeply down the hill towards the canal, where it turns east, crossing the Canal on a single-carriageway swing bridge. On the far bank, a series of twists and turns bring the road onto the bank of the River Lochy, and so to the Bridge of Mucomir, where the River Lochy is crossed as it joins the River Spean. The next mile and a half to the Commando Memorial and A82 are the straightest and widest, as the road climbs steadily up the hill before terminating with a wide junction on the A82 to provide access to the viewpoint car park at the Memorial on the hill above Spean Bridge.

Related Pictures
View gallery (11)
B8004 Gairlochy - Coppermine - 21853.jpgA82-commando.jpgB8004 near Glen Loy - Geograph - 1733295.jpgMucomir2.jpgLook Out - Neptune's Mirror - Geograph - 5357293.jpg
Other nearby roads
Fort William
B8000 – B8099
B8000 • B8001 • B8002 • B8003 • B8004 • B8005 • B8006 • B8007 • B8008 • B8009 • B8010 • B8011 • B8012 • B8013 • B8014 • B8015 • B8016 • B8017 • B8018 • B8019
B8020 • B8021 • B8022 • B8023 • B8024 • B8025 • B8026 • B8027 • B8028 • B8029 • B8030 • B8031 • B8032 • B8033 • B8034 • B8035 • B8036 • B8037 • B8038 • B8039
B8040 • B8041 • B8042 • B8043 • B8044 • B8045 • B8046 • B8047 • B8048 • B8049 • B8050 • B8051 • B8052 • B8053 • B8054 • B8055 • B8056 • B8057 • B8058 • B8059
B8060 • B8061 • B8062 • B8063 • B8064 • B8065 • B8066 • B8067 • B8068 • B8069 • B8070 • B8071 • B8072 • B8073 • B8074 • B8075 • B8076 • B8077 • B8078 • B8079
B8080 • B8081 • B8082 • B8083 • B8084 • B8085 • B8086 • B8087 • B8088 • B8089 • B8090 • B8091 • B8092 • B8093 • B8094 • B8095 • B8096 • B8097 • B8098 • B8099
Earlier iterations: B8000 • B8006 • B8008 • B8026 • B8039

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