lies just to the north of the Central Belt of Scotland
(effectively the narrow neck of the country between Glasgow
) between the Campsie Fells
to the south and Perthshire
to the north. It was described by the 18th century Scottish essayist Alexander Smith as "like a huge brooch (which) clasps the Highlands and Lowlands together."
The county is bisected from east to west by the Carse of Stirling
, the flat and mist-prone floodplain of the upper reaches of the River Forth lying between the Fintry and Gargunnock Hills to the south and the Braes of Doune to the north. Following an extensive programme of clearance and drainage in the 18th and 19th centuries, this originally desolate and boggy area now comprises some of the best farming land in Scotland. From a photographic standpoint, the Carse is characterised by impressive views of the bounding uplands and (providing the weather is right!) some stunning skyscapes.
Much of the western part of the county lies within the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park
and, as such, is covered in a separate dedicated gallery. This gallery contains images of the remainder of the county, from the eastern borders of the National Park to the towns of Stirling and Falkirk
on the tidal reaches of the River Forth.