Recent Results of the Dye Tracer Tests of the Chocholowskie Vaucluse Spring karst system (Western Tatra Mts.)

Grzegorz Barczyk


The region of the Bobrowiec Massif, crucial in underground flows within the Chochołowski Stream catchment area, was not studied in details until the 50ies. The Chochołowskie Vaucluse Spring is recharged mainly by karst systems, including that of the Szczelina Chochołowska - Jaskinia Rybia caves. The remaining 20% of water in the system comes from surface waters of the Chochołowski Stream. First succesful dye tests were conducted on this system in 1971/1972. The paper presents data and interpretation of the recent dye-tracer experiments for the Chochołowskie Vaucluse Spring recharge area. The results of these tests prove that the connection between the Szczelina Chochołowska - Rybia caves karst system and the Chochołowskie Vaucluse spring is of a karst-fissure character. This hydraulic connection is a typical example of a sub-channel circulation, where flow through a karst-fissure system takes place beneath the bottom of an existing river channel. Comparing the time of dye flow through the system with water stages indicates that the system of fissures linking the sinkhole zone with the vaucluse spring is at least three fold. The inverse relation between watermark stands reflecting the degree of watering in the massif and the time, at which dye penetrates the system, is also distincly visible.


Tatra Mountains, Chocholowskie Vaucluse spring, Karstic waters, Dye tracer experiments

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