The ruins of Inverlochy Castle, near Fort William, are clearly reflected in the sweeping stretch of water. The remains of thick walls and rounded towers complement the ridges of the mountains behind, while the smoking chimney of the crofters' cottage echoes the wisps of cloud enveloping the slopes. The scene's stillness contrasts markedly with the area's turbulent past. McCulloch substituted the rowing boat in the foreground for the Highland cattle in his original study. The Royal Association for the Promotion of the Fine Arts in Scotland bought the painting in 1857 for the national collection of Scottish art, which later passed to the Scottish National Gallery.