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Ears of Istria

A cache by 3.hand Send Message to Owner Message this owner
Hidden : 07/31/2010
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Geocache Description:

E a r s   o f   I s t r i a

The  Walls  of  Kraski  Rob  –  Veli  Badin

The karstic plateau of Slovenia gradually descends from the southeast to the southwest.
On average it lies 334 metres above sea level. Its western edge, known as Kraški Rob, is a continuation of the Ucka mountain range in eastern Istria.

Karst edge is a limestone step with some tracks of marl limestone and indicates the region where the karstic plateau with steep, tectonically repeatedly broken edge, turns from limestone to flysh , which is then forming the central part of Istria. It presents the geological, geomorphological and climatic boundary.

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digital model of the relief (Veli Badin)

The walls are constructed of limestone from upper Palaeocene and lower Eocene.
At this time Slovenia was covered by Tethys Ocean.
With the death of many organisms that have lived protected by their calcite or aragonite shells,
a sediment made of their shell remains was accumulated on the warm, spacious sea bottom.
Pressed by the weight of the thick sediment, water was gradually forced out from the pores, and the shells and shell fragments were been cemented together by calcite. Thus the former loose sediment, throughout millions of years, has transformed into a solid rock that is called limestone.
After the water was gone away the limestone got exposed to atmospheric processes causing karstification – melting, abrasion and erosion which have been continuously forming ever since. Because of the detached lay the walls exposed to the weather and so mainly by the chemical action of water, partly due to physical weathering.

Rock shelters of the Karst ridge of Veli Badin are a great natural sight of Slovenia.
Local people have named this rock shelters with 'Ears of Istria'. This place is away from the tourist routes and just a few people know that beside rock walls there is also XXXXXXXX.
The main feature of the 28m high Karst ridge of Veli Badin are three huge rock shelters which are 17 m high and the widest one is about 90 m wide. The lenght of the karst ridge from XXXXXXXX (altitude 234 m) to Sv. Kirik church (altitude 407 m) is about 2 km. There are additional rock shelters but not so huge are the three mentioned ones.
Rock shelters have a cave morphology with some cave features.
Rock shelters form because a rock stratum (limestone) that is resistant to erosion and weathering has formed a cliff or bluff, but a softer stratum, more subject to erosion and weathering (marl), lies just below the resistant stratum, and thus undercuts the cliff.

With the inclusion into the Natura 2000 network the Karst Edge will gain international importance and recognition, which can represent a significant step toward local development.
Given the unique natural phenomena, numerous preserved plant and animal species and their habitats, which are very rare within the entire European area, the Karst Edge can be classified among the most significant natural environments in Slovenia.
Here you will find 1688 species, many of them endangered.

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To log this earthcache please send the answers of the following questions to my account and upload a picture of you or your gps around the listed coords! (no spoiler please)

What natural phenomenon are you able to see on N45°27.249 E13°55.458 ?
Estimate the dimensions !
In one of these shelters you will discover (from distance please) typical
distinctive Karstic formations. What’s it about?

Important Note: Climbing is not permitted at this walls & don’t ignore the signs!

Thanks for visiting. Hopefully you stay was enjoyable.

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