Here are the original instructions from RLS to his cousin David A. Stevenson for the drawing of the map:
On the small map please mark the course of a ship, in red, leaving Queensferry going North - about midway between the Orkney and Shetlands, passing in near Cape Wrath through the Minch, near in by Canna, round Coll and Tiree, close round their S. end and the S.W. end of Mull where, close in by the S. side of Earraid, it is supposed to strike.
On the large map, a red line is to show the wanderings of my hero after his shipwreck. It must be sometimes dotted to show uncertainty; sometimes full. As thus, it begins on Earraid, he crosses at Low Water, and passes along the Ross and across Mull to Torosay; line dotted across Mull. He then goes by water to Kinlochaline and by road to the shore of the Linnhe Loch to the S. corner of Loch Leven: wood of Lettermore on the advance beyond Rudha Bod Buith - not at Rudha Mor: line still full. Thence along the hilltops to Duror: full. Thence up the S. side of the river Duror, and the N. side of the river Creran, and over Ben Maol Chalicum and across the Coe below Meannerclach: dotted. Thence round the outside of the hill-tops above the Coe and then above Loch Leven to a place above Coalisnacoan: full. Thence along the hills on the S. bank of the river Leven: full till you get near its fountain. Whereupon the line becomes dotted, and staggers up to Ben Alder. From Ben Alder, full again, across Loch Erricht, and down its east side, and across the head of Loch Rannoch. My hero then takes the hills and turns the head waters of Glen Lyon, Glen Lochay and Glen Dochart; at such obvious points of his itinerary the lines might be full, and between dotted. The line (full again) descends Balquhidder from the top, turns down Strathire, strikes over Uam Var, hits Allan Water above Kippendaire, descends Allan Water to the Forth, along the N. bank of Forth to Stirling Bridge, and then by round by Alloa, Clackmannan and Culross, till it issues from the map; for I fear we don’t reach Limekilns; which we really should have done, for from that point my hero crosses the Firth to Cawiden, and thence to Queensferry. Terminus Malorum.
If room can be found all the places I have named, might be named upon the map, except Glen Lyon, Glen Lochay, Glen Dochart, and the Duror and CreranRivers, and Rudha Bod Buithe, and Ben Maol Chalicum, and Meannarclach. The improbability of the itinerary is not so great as it appears, for my hero was trying to escape - like all heroes…
It should be lettered 'Sketch of the cruise of the Brig Covenant, and the probable course of David Balfour's Wanderings.'