Santa Ninfa’s Cave

Santa Ninfa’s cave is the most important cavity of the karstic upland of Santa Ninfa and Gibellina, for his extension and for his morphological and speleological aspects. It is included in the A area (the biggest safeguard area) of the Natural Reserve ‘’Santa Ninfa’s cave). The cave is cross by the limpid waters of Biviere torrent, that pass through the big Valle cieca del Biviere for 2,5 km, then it immerses in the subsoil near a chalky wall.

After it have passed trough many galleries, and after it had eroded its, the watercourse emerges in a spring in the main entrance of the Cave.

The cave forms a part of a big karstic system that is still active (formations’ phase) that is made of:

  • Biviere’s sinkhole, that is an 8m well that absorb the waters of the Biviere’s torrent;
  • The subsoil environments, that are made of galleries and are put in two levels of 1400m;
  • The resurgence, that represent one of the source where the Modione’s river flow into.

 

The superior branch, without hydric flow, is made of spectacular formations (cupolas, vault’s canal, meander etc) that the water made. Surprising and suggestive are the concretions carbonic and chalky: spectacular columns, trickles and stalactites, thin cannulas and bright parietal inflorescences that cover the walls of the galleries making spectacular light play.

A well that is 9 m deep that out in communication the superior branch with the active inferior level, in front of an ample collapse’s hall. Here its possible to observe the subterranean river, that is feed by the Biviere torrent that came from to surface and also is feed by a phreatic layer intercept by the cavity. In the inferior level, the action of erosion and sedimentation of the watercourse causes a slow and continuous evolution of the underground environment’s morphology, that are shaped and moulded in various shapes.