Cavern of El Valle de Los Lisos: a hypothesis about its origin in the geomorphological context of the Sierras de Córdoba, Argentina

  • Eduardo García-Aráoz
Keywords: speleology, granitic rocks, landforms, cave


The cavern of El Valle de Los Lisos is the closure of a watershed of approximately 133 hectares, located in Los Gigantes massif of the Achala batholith, Córdoba province, Argentina. This cavern is formed by a set of intricated passages developed in a granitic rock. The passages have 20 meters of horizontal advance in North-South direction, and 25 meters of total descent. The stream that drains the basin flows through its lower level.

According to the observations, a genetic-evolutionary model of the cavern is proposed, which is consistent with the Sierras de Córdoba regional geomorphological evolution. The model consists of three stages after the emplacement of intrusive body: 1) A deep weathering profile development that conditions the formation of a paleo-relief with a predominance of a rounded morphology; 2) Hydrographic basin generation from an erosive and structural escarpment, which feeds the channel that circulates through the cave; 3) Main galleries formation in successive erosion phases.

Regular Papers