At the High Force the Tees crashes down over the great Whin Sill, that stratum of volcanic rock which underlies much of North East England, making dramatic appearances along the Roman Wall and on the Northumbrian Coast. As it rushes over the fall, the river enters a dark, narrow gorge. Dark rocks festooned with ferns have a prehistoric atmosphere. Artists of old dramatised the fall, Turner's painting dramatised the fall in a spectacular manner with the high reaches of spray bouncing out like a tidal wave breaking against the rocks. Judith Owston the artist's who's painting is displayed below interpretation of this mighty fall, picks up the red peat colour in the water which the River Tees gathers as it flows among the heathery fells.
In the picture below painted by Judith, gives the vewer a sense of the enormous power the River Tees has as it spills over the High Force and displays the stained red of the water.