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Geology and sinkhole development of the Hagerstown Valley : phase II summary report.
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  • Abstract:
    As a part of this study, karst areas of the Hagerstown, Mason Dixon, Williamsport, Clear Spring, and Hedgesville

    quadrangles (western half of the Hagerstown Valley) were mapped in detail to determine the distribution of karst

    features relative to bedrock geologic units using a global positioning system. More than 2,100 karst features were

    identified and located and the following observations were made:

     There was a generally identifiable relationship between the type of karst features and the bedrock units.

     In addition to bedrock composition, joints, and faults appear to have played important roles in the

    development of the karst systems in the study area.

     Preliminary findings suggest the impact of human activities on karst development is less pronounced than in

    the Frederick Valley.

     Unlined drainageways appear to just as frequent culprits in sinkhole activity as they are in the Frederick

    Valley. Likewise, areas surrounding quarries and stormwater runoff ponds are common sites of sinkhole


    This study illustrates that future development will benefit from the current studies of karst development in the

    Hagerstown Valley. Planners can now employ the relative karst susceptibility on the different rock units as a basis

    for preliminary examination of areas of the Valley that are underlain by these soluble rocks.

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