Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

Stalactite-Stalagmite

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_2324

Synonym: Column landscape

In karst caves, stalagmites and stalactites grow towards each other and eventually join to form a feature called a karst column, which ‘stands on the ground and points towards the sky’. A dense column cluster looks like a ‘virgin forest’. In China, some columns reach heights of 30–40 m. Karst cave columns and columns on the ground have different origins. Karst columns form from travertine accumulation, while the latter form by the weathering and erosion of carbonate rocks.

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