Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley

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  • Maximum ice edge location (Brandenburg Stadium) of the Vistula glacial period in northern Germany (red line)
  • largest extent of the glaciation of the older Saale glaciation (yellow line)
  • The Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley is a valley from Warsaw via Sochaczew , Łowicz , Dąbie , Koło , Konin , Ląd , Pyzdry , Rogalin , Mosina , Obra , Zielona Góra , Eisenhüttenstadt , Berlin and Falkensee to Friesack . West of Friesack this glacial valley joins the Thorn-Eberswalder glacial valley . The combined valleys flow into the Elbe glacial valley near Havelberg .


    The Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley was formed in the periglacial climate of the Pleistocene, when the meltwaters of the glaciers ran off parallel to the ice edge during the Frankfurt phase of the Vistula glaciation from around 22,000 to 20,000 BC. Chr. And is thus the temporally and geographically middle of the three large glacial glacial valleys in Brandenburg and Poland . The melt waters of the younger Pomeranian phase also used around 18,000 to 15,000 BC. The valley as a drainage to the northwest towards the Elbe to the North Sea .

    The blockage of the rivers in the north by the continental glacier caused the valley to be up to 20 kilometers wide. It has a flat bottom on which there are often peat areas several kilometers wide .

    The thickness of the valley sand is mostly more than 10 and sometimes even more than 20 meters. This sand is deposited on the sediments of the Saale Glaciation and is fine to medium-grained in the upper layers, in some cases slightly silty . With increasing depth it becomes coarser and often contains gravelly additions.



    The Polish part of the Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley

    The following landscapes are located in the Polish part of the Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley :

    • Macro-region 315.6 Warthe-Oder-Urstromtal 
      • Mezoregion 315.61 Middle Oder Valley 
      • Mezoregion 315.62 Kargowa Basin 
      • Mezoregion 315.63 Middle Obratal 
      • Mezoregion 315.64 Śrem basin 
    • Macroregion 318.1-2 Southern Great Poland Lowlands 
      • Mezoregion 318.13 Konin Valley 
      • Mezoregion 318.14 Koło basin 
    • Macro-region 318.7 Central Mazovian lowlands 
      • Mezoregion 318.72 Łowicz - Błonie level 
      • Mezoregion 318.73 Warsaw Basin 


    The German part of the Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley

    The Berlin glacial valley as part of the Warsaw-Berlin glacial valley was formed at the end of the last ice age, the Vistula Ice Age, around 18,000 years ago. It was the drainage path of the melt waters of the inland ice at the time of the Frankfurt Ice Rim , which runs a little north and northeast of Berlin . Together with the Baruther glacial valley further south , it was formed in the Brandenburg stage of the Vistula Ice Age. Even if it was mainly formed during the Frankfurt ice edge, it also served as a drainage path towards the North Sea basin when the inland ice continued to melt back.

    The course of the glacial valley can be described by the line Eisenhüttenstadt , Müllrose , Fürstenwalde / Spree , Berlin (center), Falkensee , north of Nauen , Friesack . To the west of the small town of Friesack, the Berlin Urstromtal joins the Eberswalder Urstromtal before flowing further west near Havelberg into the Elbe Urstromtal .

    The valley is bordered by plates to the north and south . To the north are the ground and terminal moraine plateaus Land Lebus , Barnim and Ländchen Glien , which in turn drop further north to the Eberswalde glacial valley . The southern boundaries of the valley are formed by the Beeskower Platte and the flat, undulating Teltow and Nauener Platte plateaus , all of which consist of ice-age deposits (especially marl boulder and sand ). Within the glacial valley, some smaller plateaus protrude from it like islands. A well-known example are the Müggelberge in southeast Berlin. In several places, for example between Beeskower Platte and Teltow and between Barnim and Glien, smaller glacial valleys flow into the Berlin glacial valley. The border of the Berlin glacial valley is blurred there.

    The glacial valley itself is built from mighty sands that can reach a thickness of more than 20 meters. They are groundwater reservoirs and enable Berlin to supply itself with drinking water . The surface of the valley is ideally flat. There are only a few terraces a few meters higher . But since the ice advanced significantly further south during the Vistula Ice Age, numerous dead ice bodies formed in the Berlin glacial valley as a result of the meltwater activity, which subsequently thawed out and today forms lakes and moors . The Müggelsee and Tegeler See are known . On the other hand, at the end of the Vistula Ice Age, extensive dunes were blown in the glacial valley, reaching heights of up to 30 meters ( Püttberge ). The recent formation by the Spree was also considerable in some parts of the glacial valley, especially around Fürstenwalde.

    The landscape of the Berlin glacial valley is divided into two parts: While pine forests predominate east of Berlin up to the Oder due to the low groundwater level (exception: Spree lowlands), west Berlin is dominated by humid lowlands and moorland areas.

    The comparatively small rivers Spree, Dahme and, further west, the Havel still flow in the glacial valley, which carried off large streams of meltwater . The Havel follows a glacial gully and only crosses the glacial valley without using it over a longer distance.

    In the Middle Ages, glacial valleys were more significant obstacles to traffic than sand fields and moors. The trade routes preferred bottlenecks where the glacial valley was comparatively easy to cross. At a prominent bottleneck in the Berlin glacial valley, traders founded the cities of Cölln and Berlin, and Müllrose and Fürstenwalde were also founded in bottlenecks.


    The geologically elongated shape is used by many rivers, such as:

    See also


    • Herbert Liedtke: The Nordic glaciations in Central Europe. (= Research on German regional studies. 204). 2., ext. Central Committee for German Regional Studies, Trier 1981, ISBN 3-88143-020-2 .

    Web links

    Notes and individual references

    1. on the Havel just before it flows into the Elbe
    2. Piotr MIGON: Geomorfologia. Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN , Warsaw 2006, ISBN 83-01-14812-8 , pp. 353-355.
    3. Krystian Chariza: Atlas Geograficzny dla Szkół ponadgimnazjalnych. Wydawnictwo Nowa Era, Warsaw 2012, ISBN 978-83-267-0775-9 , pp. 80-81.
    4. Polish: Pradolina Warciańsko-Odrzańska
    5. Polish: Dolina Środkowej Odry
    6. Polish: Kotlina Kargowska
    7. Polish: Dolina Środkowej Obry
    8. Polish: Kotlina Śremska
    9. Polish: Nizina Południowowielkopolska
    10. Polish: Dolina Konińska
    11. Polish: Kotlina Kolska
    12. Polish: Nizina Środkowomazowiecka
    13. Polish: Równina Łowicko-Błońska
    14. ^ Polish: Kotlina Warszawska