• Wind Cave National Park - Two Worlds

    Wind Cave

    National Park South Dakota

Speleothems - Calcite Rafts

Calcite rafts floating on the surface of Calcite Lake
Calcite rafts floating on the surface of Calcite Lake
NPS Photo by Dave Schnute
 
Calcite rafts are thin sheets of calcite that today are precipitating and floating on the surface of Calcite Lake in the deepest part of the cave. The thin rafts float on the surface due to surface tension before eventually sinking when they become too heavy or when the pool is disturbed. Calcite rafts which litter the floor of some dry areas of the cave are evidence that these passages were once flooded too.
 

More Speleothems:
Boxwork | Cave Popcorn |
Dogtooth Spar | Flowstone/Dripstone | Frostwork |
Gypsum Features | Helictite Bushes

Click here to see a program about the formations of Wind Cave

Did You Know?

Porcupine in tree

Porcupine babies are called porcupettes. When they are born they have 15,000 quills. Porcupettes are born in the spring and, lucky for mom, the quills are soft. They can climb trees within an hour of birth. More...