99.9 MB (13.4 MB compressed)
4828 x 7235 pixels
40.9 x 61.2 cm ⏐ 16.1 x 24.1 in (300dpi)
DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Interior of a Greek cave showing a seasonal floodline indicating variable water levels. Such changing levels produce gours, or rimstones, dams building upwards from irregularities in stream channels or on flowstone surfaces. The largest of these impound water to depths of several meters producing rims that are strikingly crenulated. Stalactites and Stalagmites are speleothems, which occur in limestone caves. They form through deposition of calcium carbonate and other minerals, which is precipitated from mineralized water solutions. Limestone is the chief form of calcium carbonate rock which is dissolved by water that contains carbon dioxide, forming a calcium bicarbonate solution in underground caverns.
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