Bulletin of the National Speleological Society - ISSN 0146-9517
Volume 25 Part 2: 79-82 - July 1963

A publication of the National Speleological Society

Bear Cave, A Tufa Cave in Glacial Drift Near Buchanan, Michigan
Erhard M. Winkler and Alphonse C. Van Besien


Two tufa depostis are north of Buchanan, Michigan, along St. Joseph River. The tufa at Bear Cave was precipitated on the Lake Nipissing level of Lake Michigan around interlocking logs of drift wod. A similar tufa deposit occurs at the base of Mocassin Bluff where a few alluvial fans from the bluff empty onto the Algoman terrace of the St. Joseph River. Tufa is still being deposited here. The lime for the extensive deposits was supplied from a bed of what appears to be inter-glacial silt (Sangamon loess?) of variable thickness hitherto undescribed in the geological literature of this area. Solution was secondary in the formation of Bear Cave. The passages are primarily original voids in the tufa or openings left from the decay and removal of organic material in logs buried in the tufa.

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