Geology and Geomorphology
Labské pískovce is a landscape modelled by erosion, which has its origins in the Mesozoic, during the Cretaceous times around 100 million years ago. Massive layers of sandy sediments hundreds of metres thick, formed on the bed of the sea which covered the area at that time. As a result of the following lithification, sandstone was formed. When the sea receded, the sandstone layers were disturbed and broken by a series of faults caused by volcanic activity, which mostly took place in the neighbouring České středohoří region. For the following millions of years the landscape was formed and shaped by various erosional activities. The Labe river and its tributaries played the predominant role in this erosion. Igneous rocks, which were formed under the previous land surface but exposed by later erosion also contribute to the landscape appearance.
We can find a great number of geomorphic phenomena bound to the sandstone phenomena on the territory of Labské pískovce PLA. A perfectly modelled example is the Tiské stěny castellated rock “city”. The monumental Labe river canyon is a unique feature of this area and other notable features include the Pastýřská stěna cliff, Stolová hora (Table Mountain), Mt. Vysoký Sněžník as well as ridges, rock pillars, rock windows, rock niches and caves. The rugged geomorphology of the PLA territory is closely related to the great variety of climatic, and especially microclimatic conditions found here. Temperature inversions are found in the deep valleys where the valley floors are the coldest and are inhabited by typically montane flora and fauna. On the other hand the rock plateaux and ledges at higher elevations are very warm and are home to thermophilous species.