Natural History Activities
Teesdale is an absolutely beautiful rural dale that possesses an amazing wealth of both natural and historic features and landmarks. It is thought by many to be the most appealing, complete, attractive and unique of both the Durham Dales and also the famous Yorkshire Dales. And these claims can certainly be seen to be founded in a wealth of substance.
Teesdale is geologically very unique as it possesses both underlying and outcropping quartz dolerite igneous rock known as the Whin Sill. This rock underlies North East England and outcrops further to the north east in the crags of the Northumberland coast, on which have been built the famous Lindisfarne Castle and Bamburgh Castle, plus creating the famous Farne Islands. In Teesdale however, this famous geological feature has added a series of crags and scars to the already magnificent landscape, but perhaps more importantly creating a multitude of beautiful and dramatic waterfalls, several of national significance.
The most important of these waterfalls are High Force, Low Force and Cauldron Snout. indeed, High Force, which is England’s largest and most powerful waterfall, is located immediately adjacent to the High Force Hotel to which it has given its name. Low Force, about a mile downstream, is a very famous waterfall sequence feature and beauty spot. However, Cauldron Snout, located just a few miles upstream, is an awe-inspiring staircase of waterfalls that is England’s largest and most dramatic cascade.
But whilst their is excellence in every facet of the character of Teesdale, it is its variety and diversity of its attractions that also stands it apart. There are important National Nature Reserves, rare plants and a wealth of wildlife. History abounds too with the impressive ruined castles of Barnard Castle and Bowes Castle, as well as the magnificent intact fairytale Raby Castle with its magnificent parkland and large herds of deer. In addition there are also the historic houses of Eggelston Hall and Gardens and Rokeby Park, plus the majestic remains of Egglestone Abbey and in contrast the nostalgic lead mining remains of bygone days.
The scenery is magnificent and the numerous villages quaint and beautiful… and this is enhanced by the inherent peace and tranquility that this wonderful region offers to the visitor… and what better place from which to enjoy Teesdale’s delights than the High Force Hotel.