|Topographic map of southernmost Poland and northern Slovakia. High Tatrys and Low Tatrys are separated by the Paleogene Basin, and the Outer Flysch zone lies to the north. The High Tatrys are supported by granite nappes thrust northward over sedimentary strata. This is the northernmost extent of the Carpathian Mountain system.|
|Slovak Tatrys. Left: from southwestern end looking toward northeast. Right: from south looking northward with touristic and sports facilities. Highest peaks exceed 2600 m (>8500 feet).|
|Left: Slovak Tatrys from southeastern end looking toward the northwest. Right: Polish Tatrys on northern side looking toward the city of Zakopane in the center at the mountain front.|
Generalized section through the western Carpathians
Adapted from MECC'08, based on Picha (1996)
Western Carpathians – Poland
Historical entrance to the salt mine at Wieliczka, near Kraków (left). Miocene salt is exploited from a series of deformed and disconnected masses. Underground cathedral carved in salt chamber (right). This huge cathedral was carved within a single salt mass
Left: massive, little-deformed Jurassic limestone, karst terrain north of the Carpathian Mountains, Ojców valley. The limestone column is known as Brama Krakowska (the Cracow gate). Right: entrance to Wierzchowska Cave, a national monument, near Bialy Kosciól,
Eocene flysch section, near Stary Sacz. Thick sandstone beds and thin shale and siltstone interbeds characterize this section (left). Close-up view of flysch section (right). These strata were deposited in a marginal marine basin and subsequently deformed during initial uplift of the western Carpathians.
Andesite dike is the dark rock in quarry center with contact metamorphic rocks on either side (left). Close-up view of porphyritic andesite in dike (right). One of the few examples of volcanic activity in southern Poland, near Czorsztyn.
Left: limestone klippe near Nowy Targ. The klippe is an erosional remnant of a thrust sheet that rests on younger flysch deposits. Right: cliff section in Triassic dolostone, in the valley below Morskie Oko, Tatry Mountains.
Left: vertical section of Triassic dolostone, Chocholowska valley, Tatry Mountains. The Triassic dolostones are ~800 meters thick (Bac-Moszaszwili and Szostak 1992). Right: nappe of granite at Kasprowy (foreground) thrust over sedimentary strata below (background). View northward from mountain ridge toward Zakopane.
High cliffs along the Dunajec River (left), and complexly folded limestone (right). Jurassic and Cretaceous limestones were emplaced by thrust faulting into a long, narrow zone known as the Pieniny Klippen Belt, which separates the inner and outer portions of the Carpathians (see cross section above).
Taller peaks and ridges are composed of Triassic dolostone.
See Kasprowy-Zakopane cross section.
Western Carpathians – Slovakia
Vysoké (High) Tatry and Belianské (White) Tatry ranges. High Tatrys are capped by granite thrust from the south over sedimentary strata. Belianské Tatry are Mesozoic carbonate rocks thrust onto the eastern side of the Tatrys. Prominent alluvial fans and foreslope along the southern flank of the Vysoké Tatry are underlain by glaciofluvial gravel up to 400 m thick. Kite aerial photographs near Spišska-Bela looking westward.
Views from the top of Lomincky Peak at 2633 m altitude. Granite (left) forms the highest peaks of the Tatrys. Alpine glaciers eroded these peaks into steep-sided horns. Mesozoic carbonate strata (right) outcrop in lower ridges on the flanks of the mountain range.
Left: Belianské Tatry range seen from Zdiar. Uplifted Mesozoic carbonate strata form the eastern flank of the Tatrys. Right: High Tatrys seen over the lake at Strbské Pleso, a well-known touristic resort.
Left: overview of the Pieniny Klippen Belt (right) and Inner Carpathian Paleogene flysch basin (left). The klippen belt consists of Jurassic and Cretaceous sedimentary strata that are strongly deformed and mixed into a megabreccia or melange. Right: close-up shot of limestone hogback within the klippen belt.
Left: limestone complexly deformed along with red shale and sandstone in the klippen belt. Right: strongly folded sandstone and shale of Inner Carpathian flysch. These strata were deposited in submarine fans during the Eocene and subsequently deformed by the collision between Europe and the Apulian terrane.
Vineyards extend across southern slopes of the Zemplinske Hills in the Tokaj wine region. View southwest toward the Pannonian Basin in Hungary (left), and close-up shot of vineyards (right) growing in Neogene volcanic deposits.
Low Tatry mountains to right; High Tatry mountains in left background.
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