Monday, July 20, 2020

Paimio cave search... on a swamp???

There are a lot of interesting data sources for searching for new caves. There are databases at the national geology research institute [1, 2, 3]. There are reports and books of boulder fields [4,5]. There are websites [6, 7, 8, 9, 10]. Old newspaper keyword searches [11]. And regular maps [12]. But in addition, there are also names of places. Ralf had found the names Luolaniittu (cave field, on a small hill) and Luolassuo (cave swamp, an actual swamp) in Paimio. I have to say we felt pretty silly standing in the swamp with all our caving gear.

That being said, we explored the area. You have to comb through places to see what if anything is there. So that was our contribution :-) Plus it was good exercise, and the blueberries were tasty :-)

We didn't find anything on the two named areas, but we found a few small cavelets under boulders in the nearby Kukonharjanmäki (rooster comb hill) and some roof caves on a cliff face. Small, just 1-3 meters, but still interesting forms. We could also see clear effects of water erosion on the granite cliff, which was interesting.

I also draw very simple maps showing the layout of these small caves, out of the interest of documenting everything :-) Although it may be quite likely that no one ever gets lost on a 1.5 meter cave :-)

Ralf jumping over the ditches on the swamp:

Cavelet 1, a roof cave maybe 2m long. Coordinates: N 60.45586 E 22.83859. There's also a map.

Cavelet 2, another under-the-boulder roof cave. Coordinates: N 60.45533 E 22.83797. There's also a map.

Cavelet 3, yet another roof cave under a boulder. Coordinates: N 60.45514 E 22.83814. There's also a map.

Cavelet 4, a roof cave on a cliff face. This one was interesting due to the block at the bottom providing a convenient seat. Coordinates: N 60.45047 E 22.83842 (approximate). There's also a map.

Cavelet 5, a roof cave under a cliff. This was the biggest cave we saw, around 3+ meters. This one had the water erosion signs. How did this cliff face experience that during the ice age? Was there an under-the-glacier river flowing at the bottom? Coordinates: N 60.45046 E 22.83854. There's also a map.

Snack at the end of the 4+ hour search:

And some rest, staring at the sky on the forest moss:

Oh, and who says Finnish cave's aren't interesting looking? This whopping 50-cm cave had green and yellow. The yellow is from algae on the water at the bottom:

See more caving stories at, and all Planetskier and Planetcaver stories at Blogspot and TGR! This article, pictures and videos is (c) 2020 by Jari Arkko and Ralf Strandell. All rights reserved.

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