Geographia Polonica (2008) vol. 81, iss. 1

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High-mountain Elements in the Geomorphology of the Sudetes, the Bohemian Massif, and Their Significance

Piotr Migoń

Geographia Polonica (2008) vol. 81, iss. 1, pp. 101-116

Abstract

The forested mountains ranges of the Bohemian Massif, including the Sudetes, typifymoderately high mountain geomorphology (Mittelgebirge). However, the most elevated partsof the Sudetes also have landscape elements more readily associated with high-mountain relief.These include sub-alpine meadows and bare regolith-covered slopes, a multitude of relict periglaciallandforms, as well as inherited Pleistocene glacial landforms. The present-day geomorphologicalactivity in the terrain located at and above the timberline is much more evident thanthat recorded in the lower forested belt. Debris flows triggered by occasional downpours arethe most potent geomorphic agents, also influencing hydrological conditions and vegetation patterns.Avalanches play a further role in determining the position of the timberline, but rockfallsare very rare. The contemporary development of certain small-scale periglacial landforms hasbeen recognized, and close correspondence is found to exist between the tiered structure of morphogeneticdomains recognized in the Carpathians and the highest massifs in the Sudetes.

Keywords: high mountains, geomorphology, glaciation, debris flows, Sudetes, Bohemian Massif

Piotr Migoń, Institute of Geography and Regional Development University of Wrocław pl. Uniwersytecki 1, 50-137 Wrocław: Poland