Commune: Bieliny (pow. kielecki, woj. świętokrzyskie) , Nowa Słupia (pow. kielecki, woj. świętokrzyskie)

Framework element or context represented:
Low mountains formed of Upper Cambrian and Lower Devonian quartzitic sandstones, Świętokrzyskie (Holy Cross) Mts., Łysogóry subregion.

Primary geological/geomorphological interest:
Blocks fields, tors and other morphological forms.

Comparative assessment justification:
The block fields of Łysogóry range represent unique remnants of Pleistocene morphology (almost quite absent in low mountains of Central Europe).

Protection status and accessibility:
Świętokrzyski National Park (since 1950) - fragments of the Park area are well accessible by touristic trails, also natural museum is located in the Park.

Character of site: Mountain ranges.

Area: 7626.45 ha

Altitude: 270-611 m a.s.l.

Lithology: sandstones

Discipline: Palaeobiology, Geomorphology, Stratigraphy of Phanerozoic

Process Age: Pleistocene, *all periods

Bedrock Age: Devonian, Cambrian, *all periods

Description of primary interest:
The Świętokrzyski National Park covers the highest mountain range in the Świętokrzyskie Mts called Łysogóry (300 m above surrounding plains) and Bukowa Góra Range (150 m). Area of the Park belongs to the large Variscan structure – Łysogóry Anticline – asymmetric fold striking WNW-ESE and overturned (overthrust) to the south, formed of the Older Paleozoic. The south margin of the fold represents regional fault zone – Świętokrzyski Fault, separating two different units of the Earth crust: cratonic Radom-Łysogóry unit and transitional Kielce-Nida unit (boundary of the Kielce and Łysogóry subunits of the Świętokrzyskie Mts region). Numerous structures in the Cambrian sandstones, collected in the Łysogóry range were interpreted as fossils (archeocyatha, corallicyathida, algae etc), but this opinion is questioned recently. The mountain ranges represent typical structural landforms built of hard rocks: Upper Cambrian quartzitic sandstones (Łysogóry) and Lower Devonian quartzitic sandstones (Bukowa Góra Range). Extensive valleys were eroded in soft Ordovician and Silurian shales and covered by the Quaternary. The Łysogóry Range is famous because of block fields composed of big angular blocks of quartzitic sandstones, which cover the slopes. They developed in periglacial environment of the Late Pleistocene glacials, mainly last one (Vistulian, Würm), due to mechanical weathering and subsequent solifluction and pluvial erosion. Formation of a few cryoplanation terraces on slopes of the Łysogóry range is suggested. The block fields have been preserved during Holocene, but gradual retreat of their margins has been observed. Several picturesque tors are situated on the ridges.


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