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Proposal of a new speleogenetical model for Picos de Europa (Cantabrian Mountains, Spain)

AuthorsBallesteros, Daniel; Jiménez-Sánchez, Montserrat; García-Sansegundo, J.; Giralt, Santiago ; Meléndez-Asensio, M.
KeywordsAlpine karst
Cave level
Issue Date2017
PublisherSociedad Geológica de España
CitationGeogaceta, 62: 55-58 (2017)
AbstractWe propose a new speleogenetical model of Picos de Europa mountains based on the geomorphology and 234U/230Th geochronology of four pilot caves, as well as the geology, geomorphology and hydrogeology of the karst massif. The model involves six phases: (1) development of cave levels between 750 and 1300 m, probably in the Pliocene-Calabrian, (2) onset of vadose conditions predominance, (3) caves sedimentary infill, (4) erosion of cave sediments, (5) apparent pause of the karstification, and (6) reactivation of the karstification. Cave evolution is related to the fluvial incision, lowering of the watertable, and erosion of Stephanian and Permian-Mesozoic detrital rocks that overlied Picos de Europa limestone presently outcropping. Besides, glaciers and paleoclimate conditioned cave sedimentation during the Early Pleistocene. Copyright© 2017 Sociedad Geológica de España / www.geogaceta.com
Publisher version (URL)http://www.sociedadgeologica.es/archivos/geogacetas/geo62/geo62_14.pdf
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