The caves were modelled in tectonic hardly defected limestones, under influence of subterranean river streams, inside extraordinary extensive spaces, where the biggest public dome of Czech Republic is situated.
In the right slope of Suchý žleb, 500 metres distant from Skalný Mlýn (Rocky Mill), at foot of rocky wall, Gothic space caves are placed. Cave system is passing through rocky ridge - Chobot. From these monumental spaces of Gothic form (they have dimensions of 12x8 metres), 75 metres long corridor is going out. Originally, ths space was full of clay, anyway, at present, it is enlarged by means of trench. The cave mouths into the greatest area - Main Dome - which belongs, thanks to its dimensions (97 x 30 metres), to one of greatest natural subterranean areas of Czech Republic.
However, original stalactite decoration was remarkably damaged, as a consequence of limestone banks collapse, fallen from from cealings, which created powerful barriers in the bottom. From Main Dome, several chimneys and branches mouth. It is, for instance, low passage, known as Branka (small gate), leading into New Cave, popular with its unique stalactite decoration of stick stalagmites and small lakes. As a symbol of this New Cave, it is stone pillar with sintre coverings, known as Čarodějnice (A Witch).
As the last accessible cave space, it is Chaos Dome, covered with boulders. The area is changing into higher stages (floors) with rocky barriers - Calcite Corridors and Dante Hell.
Kateřinska Cave, including Main Dome, is well-known for many years. The route, open for public, was rather risky, as the visitors were forced to creep for more than 80 metres up to Big Dome, where there was a danger of orientation loss among bog boulders.
Thanks to great public echo, the cave was illuminated with electricity and open for public, within one year after its discovery.
New Cave - the interesting decoration elements:
- extraordinary narrow, four metres high stalagmites
- powerful sintre decoration and small lakes with piers
- New Kateřinská Cave was discovered with Punkva Caves at the same time, i.e. on 10th October 1909
- branch line Načeradec, passing out from Main Dome, adds that the first visitors (investigators) came into cave just in 18th century with many signatures
- in 1936, brown bear mortal bone remains were founded in the cave
- the place belongs to followed seats of bats (within the whole year), since the second half of 20th century
- the cave forms an important winter seat for 200 bats
- the air temperature in the cave is moving between 7 and 8 °C
- the route, accessible for public, makes 420 metres
- total length of cave system makes 950 metres
Text: Tereza Flašková
Source: Jeskyně (Edice Chráněná území), RNDr. Jaroslav Hromas a kolektiv
Translation: ing. Jan Jonáš
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