Excursion, May, 28
Geology of the western Elbsandsteingebirge
Claystones, marls and sandstones of the
-Pläner in the abandoned clay pit Raum representing a
major aquitard within the Middle-Turonian Postelwitz Formation (equivalent of the Jizera Formation,
base of cycle Tu4).
ResiBil – Bilance vodních zdrojů ve východní části česko-saského pohraničí a
hodnocení možnosti jejich dlouhodobého užívání
ResiBil - Wasserresourcenbilanzierung und –resilenzbewertung im deutsch-
Position of the excursion localities
1) Ottomühle (Schmilka-Formation – Bila Hora Formation)
2) Clay pit Raum (Postelwitz-Formation,
-Pläner – Jizera Formation)
3) Valley of the Krippenbach: springs at the boundary Schmilka Fm. – Postelwitz Fm. (top cycle
T2) and on top of the
-Pläner (cycle T4)
4) Postelwitz quarries, type locality of the Postelwitz (Jizera) Formation
5) Hohe Liebe (sandstone a and b, Postelwitz Formation), upturned Cenomanian to Turonian
6) Nasser Grund ( Lusatian Thrust and associated faults, water seeps at rock walls)
The excursion will focus on the geology of the southwestern part of the Saxonian subbasin,
where the transition from the pure sandstone facies to a mixed succession occurs. Here, the
correlation to the Czech sections is possible, because a continuous succession, not affected by
faults crosses the border.
We present a new concept of correlation of the formations on both sides of the basin, resulting
from palaeontologic, sequencestratigraphic and borehole data (Fig. 2). The main problem is
the subdivision of the between 200 and 380 m thick Postelwitz-Formation, which covers most
of the region and is of essential importance for groundwater formation and transport (Fig. 3).
The excursion will address some of the main stratigraphic units and their hydrogeological
Saxony (Elbe Group)
Bila Hora -Formation
Correlation of formal lithostratigraphic units as a result of the work in the ResiBil-project.
Morphology of the excursion area. The large peneplains are mainly formed by different units of the
Postelwitz-Formation which are topped by the coarse-grained sandstones of the uppermost Postelwitz-
Formation (sandstone c3) and sandstones (d and e) representing the Teplice formation. Note old
Quaternary paleovalleys of the Elbe river south of the recent river course.
Subdivison of the Postelwitz Formation (Jizera Formation)
The Postelwitz Formation was established by Prescher (1980) and summarizes the sandstone
horizons a to c3 of Lamprecht (1927, 1931, 1934) to one mappable unit, because the
distinction of the horizons is difficult in some areas. During the recent project, it became
clear, that a lot of miscorrelations occurred both in the work of Lamprecht and Mibus (1975).
Lamprecht and Mibus did not use any sedimentological features or depositional concepts;
instead they correlated on the base of bed thickness and weathering resistivity. Some of their
concepts, like the subdivision of the 120-140 m thick sandstone a into 3 units cannot be
verified in the field (see figure 6) and was therefore completely rejected. Lamprecht defined
thick-bedded sandstones as sandstone b and tried to trace this unit across the whole area with
nearly the same thickness. During our mapping, sandstone b was considered as
lithostratigraphic unit consisting of gravelly coarse-grained sandstones with distinct lower and
upper boundaries. This unit is a significant marker horizon but is being reduced to the basin
from 40 m close to Bad Schandau to only 2-5 m near Pirna. The new concept was very much
supported by the use of DEM, mapping according to facies (sedimentary structures, grain-
size, sorting) and a sequence stratigraphic correlation of the units according to Uličný et al.
The Postelwitz Formation starts above the Schmilka Formation (Lower to basal Middle
Turonian) with bioturbated fine-grained sediments; either marlstones or fine-grained
sandstones, reflecting the start of a new depositional cycle (Laurin & Ulichny 2010,
Janetschke & Wilmsen 2013). The Postelwitz Formation in Saxony comprises three
coarsening-upward cycles. In the area of mixed shoreface-foreshore sedimentation, the cycles
can easily be traced, because clay-rich sediments of the deeper shoreface and the foreshore
allow a good recognition both in the DEM and in the field to low weathering resistivity and
rows of springs and wetlands accompanying the tops of marlstones. Sharp facies boundaries
exist in vertical direction, because at the base of the sandstones sediments, shoreface erosion
and amalgamation of sediments occurs. The top of these cycles are bounded by transgressive
New stratigraphic concept of the correlation of Cretaceous deposits between Saxony and Bohemia.
After intense work and common excursions we are able to present a stratigraphic correlation
scheme for Saxonian part of the basin with the main basin on the Czech side. The reason for
problems were the lack of fossils in the sandstone facies and differences in depositional style
of both basin parts. While most of the Saxonian succession of the Postelwitz Formation is
influeneced by storms, the Jizera Formation on the southeastern coast was probably more
dominated by deltas and tidal currents. The area close to the Elbe river allows to reconstruct
spatial relationship reflecting rapid pinch-out of sandstone bodies within the Teplice
Formation. According to boreholes and following the DEM, the
to the middle part of sandstone a in the sense of Lamprecht. It marks the beginning of a
depositional cycle which is closed by the deposition of the coarse-grained shore-face
sandstone b (cycle Tu4 of Ulicny & Laurin 2004 and Tur 4 of Janetschke & Wilmsen 2013).
This sandstone represents a marker bed which can be traced over large distances along the
Jizera Formation and the Postelwitz Formation (e.g. Janetschke & Wilmsen 2013).
Cenomanian-Turonian sequence stratigraphic correlation chart (from Janetschke & Wilmsen
The last cycle of the Jizera Formation starts above this sandstone, comprising the sandstone c
(Glaukonitisch-sandige Mergel, Oberer Grünsandstein und Pirnaer Oberquader) of the
Saxonian stratigraphy. Digital elevation models give the opportunity to check this
stratigraphic concept. Figure 6 displays the stratigraphic relationships of sandstones and marls
within the Postelwitz Formation on the western side of the Elbe river. The red line marks its
base (top Schmilka-Formation). The pink line marks the 5-20 m thick
disappears to the NE and is replaced by sandstones. Light green is the base of the coarse-
grained sandstone b. All other lines mark resistant sandstone units within the sandstone a
without stratigraphic significance. Sandstone c3 marks the conspicuous rocky top of the
Postelwitz Formation and was not assigned with a line. It forms extended plateaus at the
Děčínský Sněžník in the south and the Nikolsdorfer Wände in the northwest. Some isolated
minor rock-massifs are represented by the same stratigraphic unit. Only Pfaffenstein,
Gohrisch and Papststein in the north and Großer Zschirnstein and Kleiner Zschirnstein in the
south are covered by sandstones of the Schrammstein Formation which is an equivalent of the
Teplice Formation and possibly of the lower part of the Brezno Formation. No significant
faults cut the succession. All of the units within the Postelwitz Formation can be traced
without interruption, suggesting a layer-cake structure of aquifers and aquitards. Only close to
the southern border, east of the Děčínský Sněžník, a couple of parallel WNW-ESE striking
faults are visible.
Although all marlstones and sandy claystones disappear along a line which runs
approximately from the Pfaffenstein to Großer Zschirnstein, the same cycles of the
Postelwitz-Formation can be traced through the whole Elbsandsteingebirge.
Geomorphological map showing the sandstone units of the Postelwitz Formation (Jizera
Formation) between Děčínský Sněžník and Königstein. The canyon of the Elbe between
Děčín, Hrensko and Schmilka at the eastern edge of the map is formed by the Bila Hora
Formation (Schmilka Formation). For further explanation see text.
Ottomühle (Bielatal): Schmilka-Formation (Bila Hora Formation)
The slopes of the Upper Bielatal, close to the Czech-German border are formed by rockwalls
and rock pillars of the Upper Schmilka Formation (Bila Hora Formation). They continue to
the villages of Ostrov and close to the Děčínský Sněžník on the Czech side. The medium- to
coarse-grained sandstones of Lower Turonian age follow above older Cretaceous deposits,
represented by the Niederschöna Formation, the Oberhäslich Formation, Dölzschen
Formation (summarized as Peruc-Korycany Formation in the Czech Republik) and sandy
marlstones of the Briesnitz Formation (Lower part of the Bila Hora formation). Of particular
interest are fluvial deposits of the Peruc member (0-30 m), cored in several boreholes on both
sides during the uranium exploration in the sixties and seventies of the last century. They
reflect a S-N directed Cenomanian fluvial valley with two branches in the headwaters,
providing now an additional course of groundwater flow. According to boreholes on the
Czech side, an E-W directed watershed is developed running SW-NE from of Usti nad Labem
to Děčín and further in E-W direction to Česká Kamenice (Valečka 2014). The Late
Cenomanian marine deposits attain about 20 m thickness in the valley and only few meters on
the heights. In this area, the marls and calcareous siltstones of the Briesnitz Formation show a
continuous distribution with only slightly varying thickness.
The Lower Turonian to Middle Turonian cycle (Tu1) shows the progradation of sandstones (Schmilka
Formation) to the southeast. The sandy marlstones represent the Briesnitz Formation.
We visit the cross-bedded sandstones of the Schmilka-Formation. The outcrop starts
somewhere in the middle of the Schmilka Formation, the base is covered by scree. At the first
stop, the single cross-beds form continuous tabular bodies of 20-80 cm thickness. They are
often bioturbated from the top by decapod crabs (
fossils). Most foresets dipping to the northwest; but sometimes also reverse directions can be
observed (especially at the “Schiefer Turm”).
Cross-bedded sandstones of the Schmilka Formation near Ottomühle.
On the way to the viewpoint “Kaiser-Wilhelm-Feste”, preserved thickness of the cross-beds
decreases and bioturbation disappears. Trough cross-bedding becomes abundant, replacing the
tabular cross-beds almost completely and transport directions are more variable. At the top of
this cross-bedded succession, a 1.5 to 2 m thick unit of coarse-grained to gravelly sandstone is
developed. It shows a bimodal grain size distribution, has an erosional base and almost no
internal structures. The depositional environment of the cross-bedded unit was interpreted to
be tidal, strongly controlled by a dominant component of one tidal current towards the
northwest (Voigt 1994). This is supported by coarse grained foresets, arranged in a cyclic
pattern, possibly reflecting high-water spring tides and dead neap tides. The uppermost part
was seen as a very active tidal terrace comprising a variety of sedimentary sub-environments
as subtidal, beach and intertidal deposits. The observed trends in grain size distribution were
attributed to declining depositional space either to progradation or regression. In each case, it
shows an increase in energy either by waves or by frequent current. The uppermost part above
the gravel bed with the strongly varying cross-beds, low angle bedding and renewed
bioturbation is thought to mark the start of a new depositional cycle. The number of cycles in
the Bila Hora Formation remains unclear. Mibus (1975, Voigt (1994) and Valecka described
one coarsening upward cycle in this unit. Uličný et al. (2009) recognized a second, although
indistinct, cycle on the base of borehole log interpretation. In this outcrop, the uppermost
sandstones represent for sure a new depositional cycle accompanied by deepening. It could
represent either the first cycle of the Postelwitz Formation or the proposed second cycle of the
Bila Hora Formation as proposed by Janetschke & Wilmsen 2013 (following Ulicny & Laurin
2010). This interpretation would reduce the thickness of the second cycle of the Schmilka
Formation to only 6 meters. The plateau atop the Schmilka Formation is caused by the erosion
of sandy marls and fine-grained sandstones of the basal Postelwitz Formation.
Section between Felsengasse and Kaiser-Wilhelm-Feste: Upper parts of the Schmilka Formation with
top of one depositional cycle and the base of another one.
Cross-bedded sandstones of the Schmilka-Formation in the Biela-valley (Große
Herkulessäule and Kleine Herkulessäule)
Back at the parking place Ottomühle, we have a look back at the visited section. The cross-
bedded units form a larger cross-bedded sandstone body (first order), strongly prograding to
the northwest. Only five kilometres in this direction, cross-beds disappear and are replaced
step by step by completely bioturbated, fine- to medium-grained sandstones, indicating low
energy conditions. For that reason, at Königstein the differentiation of the Postelwitz and
Schmilka Formations is complex, because both are composed of bioturbated sandstones. That
is why Voigt (1994) interpreted those relationships as an ebb-tidal delta. Concerning
hydrogeology, sandy marls of the Briesnitz Formation act as an aquitard and causing springs
(Nymphenbad, Singeborn) in the headwaters of the Biela valley: Dürre Biela, Glasergrund
and Nasse Biela. At the latter Briesnitz-Formation reaches the surface.
Clay pit Raum (Postelwitz-Formation,
The clay-pit Raum (front cover) is the only preserved outcrop of the marlstones intercalated in
the Postelwitz Formation in Saxony. It exposes the
-Pläner, which represents the base
of the second cycle of the three sequences of this formation. A second, very instructive clay-
pit close to Pirna (clay-pit Zehista) at the base of the Formation (Unterer Mergel and Unterer
Grünsandstein) was completely re-naturated and the section was destroyed.
Sand-filled burrows of decapod crabs (tubular tempestites) in the clay-pit Raum. The diameter
of the central tube is about 10 cm.
Also the clay-pit Raum is not in the best condition, because scree covers the lower slopes. The
exposed succession consists of sandy marlstones with some interlayers of fine-grained,
strongly cemented sandstones. The marls are bioturbated, especially small Thalassinoides
traces, Chondrites burrows and Planolites traces can be found. Additionally, well preserved
fossils are abundant: Inoceramus lamarcki, Inoceramus cuvieri, and Collignoniceras woolgari
prove a Middle-Turonian age. Even, a variety of bivalves and gastropods occur.
Model of “tubular tempestites” formation observed in the clay-pit Raum (Voigt 1994).
Section of the clay-pit Raum (Wilmsen & Niebuhr 2009).
Unfortunately, only remnants of the interesting sedimentary structures have left, for which the
pit was famous for. Some are hidden below the scree, some were taken out during excursions
and by people collecting fossils. Especially interesting were finger-like to arm-thick tubes in
the homogeneous marlstones, filled with coarse-grained, glauconitic sandstones. They were
interpreted to represent tubular tempestites: open burrows in a foreshore environment which
were filled with sand from the shore-face during storms. Some thin storm layers with
lamination and low angle unconformities can still be observed. On the second level of the
platform, the transition to bioturbated fine-grained sands is exposed. They represent the lower
parts of the “Mittlerer Grünsandstein” (Middle Greensandstone) corresponding to the upper
parts of sandstone a. From a sedimentological point of view, it marks the transition from the
foreshore to the lower shoreface and indicates progradation or a regression within the third
cycle of the Postelwitz Formation (Jizera Formation).
The thickness of the marlstones with intercalated sandstones exceeds 15 m in this section. The
-Pläner is the most prominent aquitard within the Postelwitz Formation and is often
marked by a number of springs at its upper boundary. Nevertheless, the isolated Harteberg (on
its slopes the clay pit is situated) is too small in scale for allowing springs to develop, but the
top of the
-Pläner is mostly wet and marked by typical wetland vegetation.
Krippenbach close to Kleingießhübel: springs at the boundary Schmilka-Formation -
Postelwitz Formation and within the Postelwitz-Formation (top
The Krippenbach and its surrounding valleys are very rich in springs. They are mainly caused by the
distribution of aquitards within the Postelwitz Formation. Additionally, some minor faults support
the water outlet.
Numerous springs occur between the valleys of the Bielatal and the Elbe valley, because the
area is characterized by marl intercalations in the Postelwitz-Formation. The main aquitards
are at the base of the Postelwitz Formation (“Unterer Mergel”, base of the Lower
Greensandstone or fine-grained marly sandstones at the base of sandstone a) and in the Lower
third of the formation (
-Pläner). In each case we visit one of the major springs at the
boundary of the Schmilka Formation to the Postelwitz Formation. With sufficient time we
will also see the Furtborn which is a water-rich spring close to Kleingießhübel (3-4 l/s). It has
its source above the Schmilka-Formation, probably above the lowermost clay-rich unit of the
basal Postelwitz Formation. The Gliedenborn and the three springs “Drei Brunnen“ are typical
contact springs which developed on top of the low permeable
-Pläner. They are
mostly situated on the northern and northeastern slopes of the mountains which was already
mentioned by Beyer (2013). This is caused by the constant dip of the aquifers and aquitards
towards the north, which allows a continuous gravity-driven flow on top of
Postelwitz quarries: type locality of the Postelwitz Formation
The Postelwitz quarries are situated high above the Elbe and represent the type locality of the
Postelwitz Formation. The base of this formation is approximately at the level of the river
Elbe, where the cross-bedded medium- to coarse-grained sandstones of the Schmilka-
Formation crop out. It reaches about 280 m thickness here and is nearly completely accessible
on the way from Schmilka to the Großer Winterberg. We visit the middle part of the
Postelwitz Formation, approximately 50 metres above its base. The slope is covered by scree
The Postelwitz Formation in the Postelwitz quarries exposes a succession of fin- to medium-grained
sandstones of Middle Turonian age. Intercalated conglomeratic sandstones with ripples (left) and
clay units of limited thickness and lateral distribution are abundant. Bioturbation (right; diameter of
burrows is 2-3 cm) is the most striking feature of this facies and indicates a lower shoreface
environment, affected by storms.
The Postelwitz-Formation in this area is completely composed of sandstones, but shows a
similar cyclic pattern as in the more basinal sections. Sandy marls like the “
or the “Glaukonitisch sandige Mergel“ are replaced by bioturbated sandstones.
The sandstones in the outcrop display a variety of sedimentary structures and a lot of fossils.
Bioturbated (trace fossils Thalassinoides and Ophiomorpha), fine- to medium-grained
sandstones are prevailing, but layers of coarse-grained and even gravelly sandstones occur.
These layers mostly show an erosive base, are laminated or had been reworked by currrents
and waves into ripples. In some cases they are covered by claystone - or siltstones layers
which reach up to 10 cm thickness. Most of them are penetrated by burrows of decapod crabs,
which were subsequently filled by coarse sand.
Most units pinch out laterally. Coarse sand or gravel layers are characteristic, followed by fine-
grained deposits, which were strongly bioturbated. They are interpreted as couplets produced by
These units were interpreted as stormlayers by Voigt (2010). Further, showing similar
structures like the deposits in the Raum clay pit. From a hydrogeological point of view, the
clay-layers act as local aquitards and dominantly influence the vertical flow of water. As the
whole succession dips with 3-5° apart from the quarry walls, no water seeps are visible.
Teufelsmauer near Ostrau: Postelwitz Formation and tectonics
The Teufelsmauer rock is part of an upturned Cretaceous sandstone succession close to the
Lusatian Thrust (Hohe Liebe Block). The exposed thick-bedded sandstone unit is dipping 10-
15° to the south and culminate at the top of the Hohe Liebe mountain. From the summit of
this mountain, a resistant, 20 m thick sandstone bed crosses to both sides and forms on the
western side the “Teufelsmauer” (devil´s wall). The rock wall can be reached through a gap
between the sandstones, caused by N-S-striking vertical fault, well indicated by slickensides
at the bounding rock walls. This strike-slip fault with a minor vertical component divides the
strongly upturned succession from units which dip only slightly to the south. The erosion of
the valley in the south was supported by a fault which runs E-W and separates the upturned
units from the main tabular sandstone body dipping with 2-3° towards the Lausitz Thrust
Digital elevation model of the Hohe Liebe mountain close to the Lausitz Thrust. The valley
“Nasser Grund” follows the N-S trending fault between the upturned succession and the flat-
lying sandstone a in the west. Especially the conspicuous sandstone ridges of the Schmilka
Formation and the Sandstone b of the Postelwitz Formation provide a steep morphology.
The Teufelsmauer displays bioturbated fine- to medium-grained sandstones (sandstone a)
overlain by a massive, coarse-grained sandstone (sandstone b). Both belong to one cycle
(Tu4) of the Postelwitz Formation. The boundary of both units is sharp and erosive, caused by
the transition of lower shoreface sands to high-energetic sands of the upper shoreface. The
difference in grain size is accompanied by a change in weathering resistivity: sandstone b
forms a conspicuous overhang at the northern side of the rock wall. The sandstones are
cemented by quartz. Porosity and permeability of the gravelly sandstone b is higher than of
sandstone a, caused by the lower grain size.
Close to the valley of the “Nasser Grund“, the Kirnitzsch cuts through the Lausitz Thrust and exposes
the granodiorite. In this part, the succession is upturned and an almost complete section of the
Cenomanian and Turonian is preserved. Several faults border this block to the flat-lying, thrusted
units to the East and West.
) Main joint directions in the region around Hohe Liebe and Nasser Grund. (
Upturned sandstone units (green) and steeply dipping fault line with slickensides indicating slip
Large scale slickensides on the surface of the coarse-grained sandstone b
(Postelwitz Formation) of an almost vertical fault mark the break in the
Nasser Grund (tectonics and groundwater monitoring pipe
The valley of the Nasser Grund was cut by a temporary tributary of the Kirnitzsch, using the
fault which separates the Hohe Liebe Block to the east from sandstone units dipping to the
south. Two boreholes were drilled during uranium exploration at the mouth of the valley
(Wismut 1222/1962 and 1222E/1965). The wells reached the base of the Cretaceous in a
depth of 261 m (-122 m below sea level). The Cenomanian is very thick (about 80 m), fully
marine and consists of conglomerates and sandstones of varying grain size. The Briesnitz
Formation (sandy marls of the Bila Hora Formation) reaches a thickness of 41 m, the
overlaying sandstones of the Schmilka Formation are 44 m in thickness. Followed by fine-
grained sandstones of the Postelwitz Formation (Jizera Formation); sandstone a has a
thickness of 95 m. The upper parts of the same unit are exposed at the eastern edge of the
valley (about 30 m thickness). They are similar to the sandstones of the Teufelsmauer which
is only 2 km apart from this place.
As the whole succession dips to the north towards the Lausitz Thrust, and the Briesnitz
Formation forms an aquitard of 40 m thickness, the Cenomanian aquifer (aquifer A in the
Czech hydrogeology) is artesian confined. The groundwater level is about 8 m above valley
surface, leading to impressive fontains if penetrated.
A second groundwater monitoring pipe was installed about 300 m to the south, where the
Eulentilke reaches the valley of the Nasser Grund. These observation pipes are in the aquifer
B, which is not separated from all overlaying aquifers. The groundwater level is about 30 m
below the valley floor (not artesian confined).
Groundwater monitoring pipes in the valley of Nasser Grund.
The Kirnitzsch-valley gives the opportunity for observations, related to the activity of the
Lausitz Thrust. From the bridge across the Kirnitzsch, the tilted Hohe Liebe Block can be
observed in sandstones of the Postelwitz Formation (about 20°) at the western part of the
valley, while the eastern sandstone rocks show an obvious flat laying succession (in fact they
dip with a few degrees to the northeast), thus indicating a fault following the valley.
Thrust faults can be observed at a block on the western slope (path) and especially in an old
quarry at the mouth of the “Kroatenschlucht”.
Impressive ice curtains form in cold winters at the western border of the Nasser
Grund and indicate groundwater seeps at the SE-dipping clay-intercalations of
Red line showing the main fault in the “Kroatenschlucht“ together with other
faults observed in the surrounding of “Nasser Grund” (black), implying a
sinistral strike slip movement in the sandstones.
Slickensides close to the Lausitz Thrust in the “Kroatenschlucht“.
Beyer, O.(1913): Über Quellen in der Sächsisch-Böhmischen Schweiz. – Mitt.Ver. f. Erdkunde zu
: 803-909, Dresden.
Herčik, F. Herrmann, Z, Valečka, J. (2003): Hydrogeology of the Bohemian Cretaceous Basin. – 91 p.,
Czech Geological Survey, Prague.
Janetschke, N. & Wilmsen, M. (2013): Sequence stratigraphy of the lower Upper Cretaceous Elbtal
Group (Cenomanian-Turonian of Saxony, Germany). - Z. Deut. Ges. Geowiss.
Elbsandsteingebirge. – Berichte der mathematisch-physischen Klasse der sächsischen
Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig,
Mibus, H. P. (1975): Abhandlungen des staatlichen Museums für Mineralogie und Geologie zu
Dresden, Band 22, 121 S. Verlag von Theodor Steinkopff, Dresden.
Prescher, H. (1981): Probleme der Korrelation des Cenomans und Turons in der Sächsischen
und Böhmischen Kreide. – Z. geol. Wiss. 9: 367-373.
Seifert, A. (1955): Stratigraphie und Paläogeographie des Cenomans und Turons im sächsischen
Elbtalgebiet. Freiberger Forschungshefte, C, 14, 1-218.
Uličný, D. (2001): Depositional systems and sequence stratigraphy of coarse-grained deltas in
Sedimentology, 48: 599–628.
Uličný, D., Laurin, J., and Čech, S. (2009): Controls on clastic sequence geometries in a shallow-
marine, transtensional basin: the Bohemian Cretaceous Basin, Czech Republic. –
Sedimentology, 56: 1077–1114.
Valečka, J. (1989): Sedimentology, stratigraphy and cyclicity of the Jizera Formation ((Middle-Upper
Turonian) in the Decin area (N-Bohemia). – Vestnik Ustredniho ustavu geologickeho 64/2,
Valečka, J. (2015): Říční sedimenty peruckých vrstev české křídové pánve u Benešova nad Ploučnicí.
– Zprávy o geologických výzkumech = Geoscience Research Reports 48, podzim, 31 -36.
Voigt, T. (1994): Faziesentwicklung und Ablagerungssequenzen am Rand eines Epikontinentalmeeres
- Die Sedimentationsgeschichte der sächsischen Kreide. – Dissertation TU Bergakademie
Freiberg, 130 S., Freiberg.
Voigt, T. (1999): Ablagerungsbedingungen und Taphonomie der Schmilka-Formation (Unter-Turon)
südlich von Pirna (Sächsisches Kreidebecken). – Greifswalder Geowiss. Beitr., 6: 193–207.
Voigt, T. (2009): Die Lausitz-Riesengebirgs-Antiklinalzone als kreidezeitliche Inversionsstruktur:
Geologische Hinweise aus den umgebenden Kreidebecken. – Z. Geol. Wiss., 37: 15–39.
Voigt, T. (2010): Sturmdominierte Sedimentation in der Postelwitz-Formation (Turon) der
Sächsischen Kreide. – Freiberger Forsch.-H., C 540 (Karl-Armin-Tröger-Festschrift): 3–25.
Excursion, May, 28
Excursion stops near Hřensko
ResiBil – Bilance vodních zdrojů ve východní části česko-saského pohraničí a
hodnocení možnosti jejich dlouhodobého užívání
ResiBil – Wasserressourcenbilanzierung und –resilienzbewertung im Ostteil des
Water plant Hřensko
The Hřensko waterworks is located in the Dlouhá Bělá valley, east of the small town Hřensko
in Czech Republic. The facility exploits groundwater from a Lower Turonian aquifer
(according to the Czech nomenclature aquifer BC and according to German nomenclature:
aquifer 3). The Lower Turonian aquifer is built of sandstones with high transmissivity and
stratigraphically occurs in the so called Bílá Hora and Jizera Formations.
The Hřensko waterworks was built in late 60s and early 70s of the last century. The
groundwater extraction was gradually increasing and in years 1990-1991 it had reached its
maximum at 130.0 l/s (liters per second). Then the extraction rates successively decreased to
present volume of approximately 60.0 l/s (Fig. 2).
The company SČVK (N-Bohemian waterworks and sewage system) pumps groundwater from
6 wells and exploits 2 springs, which supply water through a gravitational pipeline. The
excursion points include a pumping well and one spring. One of the exploited springs is
named „Pod Pravčickou bránou“ (Fig. 3) and provides approximately 11.0 l/s, even with
intensively pumped wells in front of this spring. Historically, before it was started to pump, it
was the largest spring in this area with a discharge of around 20.0 l/s.
Graph of groundwater extraction rates in the Hřensko area (blue line) and in the
Kirnitzsch area (green line).
The exploited spring „Pod Pravčickou bránou“.
The raw groundwater is good in quality, with low mineralization and a moderate acidity. The
treatment of water in the waterworks includes the addition of limewater (to increase the
concentration of calcium as well as the mineralization level and to neutralize the acidity) and
chlorination (antibacterial treatment).
The treated groundwater from the Hřensko waterworks directly supplies public waterworks of
the town Děčín and its surrounding and is part of a large North Bohemian water supply
Springs above the Hřensko waterplant
Interesting springs are situated in Suchá Bělá valley. They are located between the Hřensko
waterworks and the Großer Winterberg in close range to the Czech-German state border. The
waters of those springs are clean and mostly low mineralized.
The groundwater of the springs comes from a Mid Turonian aquifer (Czech Republic: aquifer
BC or Germany: aquifer 2). Another spring in the same hydrogeological situation is nearby
the spring in the Malinový důl valley named „Nad Klepáčem“, it has been used for drinking
water supply of the small town Hřensko since 1898 (we can see the old waterworks; Fig 4).
Old waterworks „Nad Klepáčem“ is supplying Hřensko with
In the Suchá Bělá valley there are another 7 considerable springs located. The largest of them
(Suchá Bělá 3) has a discharge of approximately 4.0 l/s and is observed by ČHMÚ (Czech
Hydrometeorological Institute) as a part of Czech hydrogeological monitoring network
(Fig. 5). In the years of the highest pumping rates in Hřensko waterworks, the discharge of the
spring was generally lower.
The spring „Suchá Bělá 3“ is observed by ČHMÚ. At the bottom, the pumping rate
log chart of the spring illustrates a declining trend from 1965 to 2011.
The second one (Suchá Bělá 2) has currently a discharge of approximately 1.0 l/s (Fig. 6).
This spring with clean water was observed by ČHMÚ till 1992. In the years with the highest
pumping rates in Hřensko waterworks, the spring sometimes has gonedry.
Both springs are located on an aquitard formed by Turonian sediments (Jízera Formation).
The aquitard is well distinguished in Saxony, but has not been clearly defined in the Czech
Vývoj průměrné měsíční vydatnosti pramene PP0552 - Suchá Bělá č. 3 (Oblast 1)
Průměrná měsíční vydatnost [l/s]
The spring „Suchá Bělá 2“ had been observed by ČHMÚ until 1992.
Above those two springs in the Suchá Bělá valley we can see some other natural springs and
one old monitoring borehole.
Vývoj průměrné měsíční vydatnosti pramene PP0551 - Suchá Bělá č. 2 (Oblast 1)
Průměrná měsíční vydatnost [l/s]
Natural springs in the mid part of the Suchá Bělá valley.
Destructed Cenomanian borehole near Labe/Elbe River
An old hydrogeological borehole was situated by the Labe/Elbe River and the Suchá
Kamenice brook. The borehole reached the base of the Cretaceous aquifer (Czech Republic:
aquifer A or Germany: aquifer 4) made up of Cenomanian sandstones (Peruc-Korycany
Formation). The borehole, named DN-14/61, was drilled in 1961 with a total depth of
The groundwater of the artesian aquifer flows up to the surface, naturally. The shutdown of
the borehole was not successful and therefore approximately 4.0 l/s of groundwater from the
Cenomanian aquifer is now being discharged to the Suchá Kamenice creek. The groundwater
at the base of the Cretaceous collector has low mineralization but is rich in iron, which causes
red sediments in the Suchá Kamenice creek (Fig. 8).
Overflow from the destructed Cenomanian borehole with iron
In general, groundwater from the Cenomanian aquifer has not been used for drinking water
supply in this region. In the Děčín and Ústí nad Labem area, this aquifer has locally higher
temperatures (around 25°C) and is, for example, used as a source for thermal swimming
Kamenice River canyon
In Hřensko the Kamenice River flows into the Labe/Elbe River. The Kamenice River shaped
the canyon where the town Hřensko is situated. The canyon walls consist of the Bílá Hora and
Jizera Formation. Along the river there is the possibility to see the interaction of groundwater
and surface water. Mostly, springs are located in fissures of the sandstones. The valley is part
of the National park „České Švýcarsko“ (Czech Switzerland).
Kamenice River in sandstone canyon near Hřensko.