Rivers going underground, great springs emerging from the ground, independent hollows and basins instead of connecting valleys, deep potholes and vast caves, isolated towerlike hills reminiscent of the unbelievably steep peaks depicted in Chinese paintings—these are some of the distinctive features of karst, the name given to the kinds of country that owe their special characteristics to the unusual degree of solubility of their component rocks in natural waters.
The special nature of karst is not only intrinsically interesting; it affects many aspects of life in the areas where it is found—water supplies, agriculture, engineering construction, tourism. There are, then, practical as well as scientific reasons for its study.
The dramatic quality of karst landforms has caught the imagination of specialists and laymen alike. This book contains much to stimulate and inform the general reader as well as the undergraduate and high school student for whom it is written. It will be of particular interest to the hydrologist, the speleologist, and the sporting caver and potholer.