We have now transported the tourist to the other side of the frith. From Dumbarton rock to the quay or place of anchorage for vessels plying to Helensburgh, is a sail of about an hour and a half by the steam-boat; which proceeds first to Greenock, and then crosses to Helensburgh. There is little worthy of particular notice along the coast from Dumbarton to Helensburgh. It appears well-wooded, and rises gradually as it recedes, till in some places it attains a considerable elevation, The distance of Helensburgh from Glasgow, by land is only 23 miles. The road is continued to Dumbarton through Cardross village.
Helensburgh is a rapidly increasing village, chiefly composed of neat looking villas, the property of Glasgow citizens, who use them as bathing-quarters during the summer. It is about a mile in length, and extends along a fine gently curving bay, protected on the one side by the hill of Ardmore, and on the other by Roseneath point. The shore is flat and well-adapted for bathers. Helensburgh was rounded above half-a-century ago by Sir James Colquhoun, the lord of the barony, who named it after his lady, Helen. The ground is to be feued on a regular and extensive plan; but it is only within these six years that this place rose into fashionable repute. A mile to the westward is the pleasant inn of Ardincaple; and a mile and a half farther are the village and the kirk of Row, which is the parish-church of Helensburgh.
Crossing the mouth of the Gair loch we reach Roseneath point - a finely wooded peninsula of about 7 miles in length by 2 in breadth, dividing Loch Gair from Loch Long. The castle or palace of the duke of Argyle here forms the chief object of attraction to most tourists. It occupies the site of a fine old castle which was burnt down in 1802. It is a noble mansion in the Italian style, 184 feet in length, by 121 in breadth: having two fronts, one towards the north, and the other facing southwards. The northern front is adorned with a magnificent portico of the Ionic order. A circular tower, surmounted by a ballustrade, rises from the centre of the building; and the offices, which are at a little distance from the house, are also ornamented with a tower 90 feet in height, forming a conspicuous object from different points of the frith. To the north of the palace are the manse and church of Roseneath, to which you may be ferried across on Sundays. Roseneath, including the parish of Row, belonged at one time to the McAulays. They long had a deadly feud with the Campbells, but were ultimately obliged to yield to that powerful and numerous clan. The name has been derived by some from Rhos-noeth, or 'the naked promontory'; by others from Rhos-na-choich, or 'the promontory of the virgin.'
A sail up the Gair loch, if the tourist has time and opportunity, will well-reward his trouble. The lower portion of the loch, from Row point downwards, is of a softer and more tranquil character than the upper; but the whole is remarkably different in character from that of the other lochs opening into the frith, and should be visited for the sake of contrasting its softer beauties with the sterner and sublimer features of the others.
Above the church, on the Roseneath side of the loch, is the mansion-house of Baremman. On the other side we successively pass Ardenconnel the seat of Sir James Colquhoun, the mill of Auldmounie, and Blairvadich. Two miles farther on is Shandon, and a mile and a half beyond is Faslane. At the head of the loch, on the west side, is the farm-house of Fernicary, the residence of the family of the name of Campbell who have rendered themselves so conspicuous in the propagation of certain religious views generally designated as the 'Row heresy.' A walk of about twenty minutes from the head of the loch to the summit of the rising grounds above it brings the tourist in sight of Loch Long and the opening of Loch Goyle. If he wishes to gain the latter point, he must proceed onwards to Portincaple, where there is a ferry to Ardentinny at the mouth of Loch Goyle.