GEOLOGICA CARPATHICA, AUGUST 2008, 59, 4, 333—344
Paleogene depositional systems and paleogeography of the
submarine fans in the western part of the Magura Basin
(Javorníky Mountains, Slovakia)
State Geological Institute of Dionýz Štúr, Mlynská dolina 1, 817 04 Bratislava, Slovak Republic; firstname.lastname@example.org
(Manuscript received May 2, 2007; accepted in revised form March 14, 2008)
Abstract: This paper gives an overview of the depositional systems and paleogeography of the submarine fans in the
western part of the Magura Basin. Four fundamental petrographic groups were distinguished within the sandstones of this
area: Soláň, Riečky, glauconitic and Magura group. This classification responds to four source areas supplying sedimen-
tary material into the western part of the Magura Basin. The sedimentation developed in a few separated depositional
cycles. First the massive to the basin prograding wedge of the Soláň Formation was deposited along the northern margin of
the Magura Basin during the Late Cretaceous to Early Paleocene. Later the central zone of the basin subsided probably
more significantly. The coarse-clastic sedimentation shifted in the Rača Zone from the margin into the deeper part of the
basin as a result of this subsidence since the Early Paleocene. The depositional fans of the Riečky sandstone type were
formed there. Uplift of the Silesian Ridge advanced from the W to the E during the Middle Eocene. Its result was the
shifting of the source of the sedimentary material. This new source supplied to the basin glauconite sandstones from the
NE. This sedimentation represented an asymmetrical fan of the proximal coarse-grained Pasierbiec sandstone type and
pelitic distal facies. Sedimentation of the Riečky sandstone type was renewed with a reduced volume once more during the
Middle Eocene. The period of the subsided and uplifted basin floor blocks followed rather flattened subsidence of the basin
floor since the late Middle Eocene (Lutetian). Two extensive depositional fans developed parallel to the basin elongation
direction in that time. These were the glauconitic and Magura fans. Both fans existed side by side simultaneously and
interfingered each other. These fans prograded from the South into the Rača sedimentation area. The depositional systems
and paleogeography of the submarine fans in the western part of the Magura Basin were controlled mainly by basin floor
subsidence, by the local sediment supply, synsedimentary tectonics, by the progress of the subduction of the southern
Magura Basin margin and also by the depositional pressure of the adjacent fan.
Key words: Paleogene, Outer Western Carpathians, Magura Basin, paleogeography, submarine fan model, sedimentology,
This paper is concerned with the deposits of the Magura
Nappe, which form the Javorníky Mts and the adjacent area.
The solution to the stratigraphic, lithofacies and petrographic
problems of this region is decisive for the paleogeographical
reconstruction of the Western Carpathians Flysch Belt. Par-
ticular attention was paid to the detailed restoration of the
bed sequences, and the paleocurrent and petrographic analy-
ses of this area during the last geological mapping (Mello et
al. 2005). The present paper is intended to give in short
a general picture of the depositional systems, paleogeogra-
phy of the submarine fans and some reconstruction of the sea
floor relief evolution in the western part of the Paleogene
Magura Basin. The correlation of the relative lithostrati-
graphic units between Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Re-
public was not the intent of this paper.
The Javorníky Mts are formed by the Upper Cretaceous to
Lower Oligocene flysch sediments deposited in the ancient
Magura Basin (Fig. 1). The sediments of this basin were
folded into the north-vergent imbricated folds and slices of
the rootless Magura Nappe. This nappe was detached from
its substratum mainly along the ductile Upper Cretaceous
rocks. In this manner the post Oligocene accretionary prism
formed. Three tectonofacies units have been distinguished in
the western part of the Magura Nappe on the basis of the de-
posit facies differentiation. These are from North to South:
Rača, Bystrica and Krynica Units (Birkenmajer & Oszczyp-
ko 1989). The Krynica ( = Oravská Magura) Unit is not
present in this area.
The Rača Unit can be divided into the outer Rača Unit
( = Siary Unit in Poland) and the inner Rača Unit. The sedi-
mentation advanced in the Rača Unit in this area from the
Soláň Formation (Campanian to Paleocene), through the
Beloveža Formation (Early Paleocene to Middle Eocene)
and the Luhačovice Formation (Middle Eocene) to the Zlín
Formation (Middle to Late Eocene) (Fig. 2).
The Soláň Formation is formed by the Lukov Beds
( = Mutne Sandstones in Poland) and the Ráztoka Beds (Pesl
et al. 1984; Potfaj et al. 2003; Mello et al. 2005). The Rázto-
ka Beds are subdivided into the Claystone-sandstone Litho-
facies (Soláň sandstone type) and the Sandstone-claystone
Lithofacies (thin-bedded flysch) (Pesl 1968). This is partly
equivalent to the Inoceramus Beds (Sikora & Żytko 1959) or
the Ropianka Beds in Poland.
The Beloveža Formation represents a lithofacies variegat-
ed complex divided into the Lower and Upper Beloveža
Beds. The Lower Beloveža Beds are composed of the Riečky
sandstone type (Potfaj et al. 2003; Te ák in Mello et al. 2005,
Skawce Sandstone Member – Cieszkowski & Waśkowska-
Oliwa 2001), variegated claystones and thin-bedded flysch
(Łabowa Shale Formation or Ciężkowice Sandstones in Po-
land – Sikora & Żytko 1959). The Upper Beloveža Beds are
represented by thin-bedded flysch (Hieroglyphic Beds in Po-
The Luhačovice Formation is divided by a segment of
thin-bedded flysch into the Lower Luhačovice Beds (Pesl
1968) and the Upper Luhačovice Beds (Te ák in Mello et al.
2005). The Lower Luhačovice Beds are equivalent of the
Pasierbiec Sandstones in Poland (Sikora & Żytko 1959). The
Upper Luhačovice Beds are not developed in Poland.
The Zlín Formation is divided into the Vsetín, Babiše
(Te ák in Mello et al. 2005; Te ák 2005b), Kýčera and
Bystrica Beds. It is Middle—Late Eocene in age, maybe
younger (Oszczypko-Clowes 2001). Two fundamental litho-
types of the sandstones are present in this formation – the
glauconitic and Magura sandstone types (Stráník 1965).
The Bystrica Unit ( = Sącz Unit in Poland) is formed by the
Beloveža Formation (Paleocene to Early Eocene) and the
typical Bystrica Beds of the Zlín Formation (Łacko Beds
(Marls) or the Żeleźnikowa Formation in Poland – Oszczyp-
ko 1991) (Middle Eocene).
Many papers have been written about the paleogeographical
evolution of the Magura Nappe in the Western Carpathians.
From the wide list of the papers the lithofacies classifications
of Książkiewicz (1956, 1966) and Pesl (1965, 1968) had the
greatest weight for the writing of this article. They displayed
in detail the distribution of the lithofacies in the western part
of the Magura Basin. Also Golonka et al. (2000) and Oszczyp-
ko & Salata (2005) tried to reconstruct the evolution of the
Magura Basin. Krystek (1963), Winkler & Ślączka (1992,
1994) attempted to identify the character of the source terrains
by heavy minerals analyses. Unrug (1968) interpreted the
shifting of the Silesian Ridge from West to East. Poprawa et
Fig. 1. Informative location map and geological map displaying the setting of the investigated Javorníky Mts (Ja) in the Western Car-
pathians (sensu Te ák in Mello et al. 2005).
PALEOGENE DEPOSITIONAL SYSTEMS AND PALEOGEOGRAPHY OF THE SUBMARINE FANS (SLOVAKIA)
al. (2002) interpreted the tectonic evolution of the flysch ba-
sins of the Outer Carpathians inferred from the basin subsid-
ence analysis and sediment supply.
The lithofacies structure and petrography of the Magura
Nappe were reconstructed during the detailed geological map-
ping of the Javorníky Mts (Fig. 1 sensu Te ák in Mello et al.
2005). These allowed me to create the lithofacies scheme for
each tectonic slice of the Magura Nappe separately (Fig. 3).
I have measured the paleotransport of the gravity flows on
737 bedding planes. The paleocurrent analyses (Fig. 5) and
detailed reconstruction of the lithofacies and lithostrati-
graphic profiles (Fig. 3) of the investigated area enabled me
to interpret the paleogeographical conditions and sedimenta-
tion evolution in the western part of the Magura Basin
(Fig. 6) (Te ák 2005a). The Magura Nappe is elongated in
the WSW—ENE direction in its western part at present. This
is not the original position of the Magura Basin. About 60
of counterclockwise rotation of the basin fill took place since
the Oligocene (Krs et al. 1994; Panaiotu 1998). In this article
I refer the azimuth orientations to the present geographical
position without clockwise restoration.
107 samples of sandstones were sampled for the petro-
graphic analyses during the detailed geological mapping of
the Javorníky Mts (Gross 1997; Buček & Nagy 1997; Filo in
Filo & Siráňová 1998). These petrographic analyses (planime-
try) were evaluated by Siráňová (1997, 2001). Te ák (2005a)
verified lithofacies classification of these samples and petro-
graphically evaluated another 53 samples. All these samples
were sampled in the Javorníky Mts region from the flysch for-
mations of the Magura Nappe (Late Cretaceous to Late
Eocene). The following petrographic analyses are based on
Dickinson & Suczek (1979). They identified the character of
the source areas of the submarine sandstones by the distribu-
tion of sandstones analyses in the QFL triangle petrographic
diagram (Q – quartz and quartzite, F – feldspars, L – lithic
detritus, see also Dickinson 1985). I plotted the obtained pet-
rographic values onto the QFL diagram (Fig. 4). Palinspastic
analyses are also based on the lithofacies analyses of Pesl
(1968) and Książkiewicz (1966). (The sandstone types are
understood in this article not in the stratigraphic, but wholly
in the lithofacies meaning).
Evolution of the sedimentation
The results of the petrographic analyses of the sandstones
from the Javorníky Mts are displayed in the QFL diagram
(Fig. 4). All the resultant points fall close the cusp of the
Quartzite. The points are distributed into the characteristic
petrographic groups. Four fundamental petrographic groups
were distinguished within the sandstones of this area: Soláň,
Riečky, glauconitic and Magura group. These groups repre-
sent four main source areas supplying sedimentary material
to the western part of the Magura Basin during the Paleo-
gene. Consequently several evolutionary stages were distin-
guished in the deposition of the western part of the Magura
Basin since the latest Cretaceous to Oligocene:
– marginal wedge
– longitudinal fans
– north-eastern source
– recycled orogen
The oldest sedimentation cycle in the studied area took
place during the Late Cretaceous to Early Paleocene. The
deposition with domination of sandstones and conglomer-
ates represents this event. A massive to-the-basin prograding
wedge of the Soláň Formation was sedimented along the
northern margin of the Magura Basin (Figs. 2 and 5). It cre-
ates the thick upward-coarsening cycle (Fig. 3). The thin-
Fig. 2. Lithostratigraphic scheme of the Magura Nappe (Javorníky
Palinspastic cross-section of the
sediments deposited in the w
estern part of the
Magura Basin (Javorníky Mts).
PALEOGENE DEPOSITIONAL SYSTEMS AND PALEOGEOGRAPHY OF THE SUBMARINE FANS (SLOVAKIA)
Fig. 4. The results of the petrographic analyses of the Magura Nappe sandstones are sorted according to their lithofacies affinity (Javorníkov
Mts, 160 samples).
bedded flysch of the Sandstone-claystone Lithofacies lies on
the base of this cycle and on the distal part of the wedge (150
up to 280 m thick). Sedimentation passed upward gradually
into the Soláň sandstone type complex. “Wild-flysch” with
intercalations of the slumps and olistolites of the Mesozoic
carbonates sedimented near the basin margin on the proxi-
mal part of the wedge (Eliáš 1963; Chodyń 2002). The Soláň
sandstone type complex reaches a thickness of almost
1000 m to the North from the Turzovka town (Lukov Beds
sensu Pesl et al. 1984; Potfaj et al. 2003; Mutne Sandstones
sensu Sikora & Żytko 1959; Chodyń 2002). The sandstone/
claystone ratio and thickness of the sandstone wedge decline
to the SE near the Makov village to 450 m (Claystone-sand-
stone Lithofacies). The sandstone wedge completely vanish-
es to the South towards the inner Rača Zone. There it is re-
placed by the distal thin-bedded flysch sediments of the
Sandstone-claystone Lithofacies (Pesl 1968). The measured
directions of the paleocurrents are variable, but their preva-
lent trend is mainly from the NW (Sikora & Żytko 1959;
Eliáš 1963; Krystek 1963; Te ák 2005a). Evidently the sedi-
mentary material was supplied to the basin by several sourc-
es from the Silesian Ridge.
The Riečky sandstone type forms two massive sandstone
complexes of the Lower Beloveža and Upper Luhačovice
Beds. They were deposited during the Paleocene to Middle
Eocene (Fig. 2). The Riečky sandstone type forms 30—
150 cm thick beds. The beds are often amalgamated in up to
40 m thick packages. Their granularity varies from fine-
grained conglomerates to middle-grained sandstones with
grains up to 5—15 mm (max. 20—60 mm). Lowe’s S
divisions are typical. The sandstones consist
of quartz, subordinately feldspar (about 5 %), epimetamor-
phic rock, igneous rocks, muscovite and quartzite (rarely
carbonates and glauconite). The clasts are well rounded. The
Riečky sandstone type represents the lobes of the suprafan.
The sandstones are intercalated with the interchannel facies
of the variegated (red and green) non-calcareous claystones
and thin-bedded flysch. The thinner beds of sandy-clayey
slumps occur in the Makov village area.
The distribution field of the Riečky sandstone type does
not reach up to the cusp of Quartzite in the QFL petrographic
diagram (Fig. 4). They are formed by less mature material
with abundant feldspar and lithic clasts. The analyses dem-
onstrate the slightly different petrographic character of the
Lower Beloveža Beds the against Upper Luhačovice Beds,
although these are formed by the same sandstone type. The
points of the Riečky sandstone type of the Upper Luhačovice
Beds are not so widely diffused in the QFL diagram. Their
distribution field shifts from the field of the recycled orogen
to the field of the continental block source area (sensu Dickin-
son & Suczek 1979). These petrographic changes could be
caused by the advanced erosion and increased maturity of
the source area. The sedimentary material was transported
from the W (SW) to the E (NE).
The clastic sedimentation shifted in the Rača Zone from
the margin into the deeper part of the basin after the sedi-
mentation of the Soláň sandstone type since the later Early
Paleocene. The shifting of the maximum deposition zone
sugest that the central zone of the basin subsided probably
more significantly. The longitudinal depositional fans of the
Riečky sandstone type (Lower Beloveža and Upper Lu-
hačovice Beds) and the Pasierbiec sandstone type (Lower
Luhačovice Beds) were formed in the centre of the basin
(Pesl 1965, 1968; Potfaj et al. 2003; Te ák 2005a). Orienta-
tion of the individual fans was parallel to the basin elonga-
tion (Fig. 6).
The fan of the Lower Beloveža Beds is thickest in the area
to the South from the main crest of the Javorníky Mts, where
their thickness reaches up to 250 m. The thickness of this
mostly sandstone complex was reduced down to 30 m in the
area to the North from the main crest of the Javorníky Mts
near Makov village and only rare individual beds occur near
Klokočov village (Fig. 3). About 30 m thick complex of the
Riečky sandstone type wedge is found above 45 m and be-
low 70 m of variegated claystones and thin-bedded flysch in
the Makov village area. It follows that the Riečky fan
reached its farthest northern extent at about half way through
its existence. This fan extended to the S as far as the Bystrica
Zone sedimentation area (Te ák in Mello et al. 2005). The
Riečky sandstone type of the Lower Beloveža Beds occur
westward, near the Valašské Klobouky town in two tectonic
slices of the Bystrica Unit. Their thickness is about 200 to
400 m (Roth in Buday et al. 1963 described these sediments
as the Soláň Formation). The fan vanished quickly eastward
in the Bystrica Zone realm. There it reached a thickness from
50 to 150 m near Mariková village. The most eastward oc-
currence of the Riečky sandstone type was observed in the
Bystrica Unit, near Dlhé Pole village (Te ák in Mello et al.
The equivalent of the Riečky sandstone type of the Lower
Beloveža Beds is the Skawce Sandstone Member of the
Łabowa Formation in Poland (Cieszkowski & Waśkowska-
Oliwa 2001, previous Ciężkowice Sandstones sensu Sikora
& Żytko 1959; Książkiewicz 1966; Cieszkowski et al.
1999). This member occurs in Poland north-east of the Babia
hora Mt. These sandstones are typical for the outer Rača Unit
(Siary Zone) in Poland. Their stratigraphic position, litholo-
gy and petrography resemble the Riečky sandstone type of
the Lower Beloveža Beds, but the Skawce Sandstone Mem-
ber has a different paleocurrent configuration (transport from
NNW to SSE). It formed a separated sedimentation fan situ-
ated along the northern margin of the basin. This fan did not
reach the centre of the basin. This distinquishes it from the
Riečky sandstone type fan (Książkiewicz 1966).
Sedimentation of the Riečky sandstone type was renewed
once more with a reduced volume within the Middle Eocene
as the Upper Luhačovice Beds (Pesl 1968). They form thick
amalgamated sandstone beds. This fan spread over the inner
Rača Zone (in recent the Medvedie, Luhačovice and Čertovy
kameny Anticlinal Zones). The fan retained its extension
parallel to the basin elongation. Its width was about 40 km
and its length was over 80 km, which is the distance between
Luhačovice and Kysucké Nové Mesto towns. The fan thick-
ness decreased towards the fan margins from its maximal
thickness of 120 m (near Papradno village, Fig. 3). Clastic
PALEOGENE DEPOSITIONAL SYSTEMS AND PALEOGEOGRAPHY OF THE SUBMARINE FANS (SLOVAKIA)
material was transported generally from the WSW to ENE
(Fig. 5). Lack of the Riečky sandstone type in the Upper
Beloveža Beds in the outer Rača Zone suggests that the
synsedimentary fault framed the northern fan margin on the
same place as the Pasierbiec sandstone type of the Lower
Luhačovice Beds. This fault completely inhibited the gravity
currents to over-flow to the North over the elevated plain
(Fig. 6), where thin-bedded flysch of the Upper Beloveža
Beds was sedimented. The southern margin of this fan was
not as distinct as the northern one. The fan was interfingered
from the South by the quartz glauconitic sandstones of sug-
ar-like appearance (Medvedie and Potoky Anticlinal Zones,
A north-eastern source
The coarse-grained sedimentation of the Riečky sandstone
type was followed by the deposition of another longitudinal
fan in the central part of the Magura Basin. This newly acti-
vated north-eastern source supplied the sandstones rich in
glauconite. These glauconitic sandstones form the Lower
Luhačovice Beds (Pasierbiec Sandstones), Beloveža Forma-
tion, Bystrica and Vsetín Beds (Wątkowa Sandstones) of the
Zlín Formation (Magura Formation in Poland) (Fig. 2). The
glauconitic sandstones are green-white, fine- to medium-
grained, siliceous, laminated or massive (T
division) and well sorted. They form beds 5 to 250 cm thick.
The coarse-grained massive type is called the Pasierbiec
sandstone type. These sandstones are characterized by abun-
dant glauconite (many times over 5 %). The clasts of feld-
spar, epimetamorphic rocks and carbonate detritus are also
abundant. A special type of the glauconite sandstones is rep-
resented by the quartz glauconitic sandstones of sugar-like
Sandstones of the glauconitic source area are more sili-
ceous than the other sandstones in this area. Their distribu-
tion field reaches in the QFL diagram up to the cusp of
Quartzite (Fig. 4). Majority of the points fall into the field of
the continental block source area (Dickinson & Suczek
Fig. 5. Rose diagrams of the paleocurrent direction measurements in the Javorníky Mts sorted according to lithostratigraphy and tectonics
(in the circle is the number of measurements).
PALEOGENE DEPOSITIONAL SYSTEMS AND PALEOGEOGRAPHY OF THE SUBMARINE FANS (SLOVAKIA)
The eastern part of the Silesian Ridge was uplifted during
the Middle Eocene (Unrug 1968). This source supplied to
the basin an increased volume of metamorphic rocks and
feldspar. The character of the sedimentary material was
probably influenced by its resedimentation in the littoral
area. The sediment was thus enriched by the glauconite and
carbonate organic detritus from the uplifted littoral area. The
clasts were well rounded. This could have been caused by
long transportation or by reworking. The shelf along the
Silesian Ridge with the carbonate platform sedimentation
produced an enormous amount of the organic carbonate ma-
terial and glauconite.
The fan of the glauconitic sandstones was asymmetrical
during the Middle Eocene (Fig. 6). The central “proximal”
part of the glauconitic fan was formed by the coarse-grained
Pasierbiec sandstone type (Lower Luhačovice Beds). Their
distal equivalent is the fine-grained glauconitic sandstones
on the southern (left) fan side. The considerable volume of
this sedimentation consists of thick pelitic deposits (Bystrica
Beds or the Lącko Marls in Poland – Książkiewicz 1966,
Żeleźnikowa Formation – Oszczypko 1992) (Fig. 2). The
Bystrica Beds represent the distal part of the glauconitic fan.
Equivalent glauconitic facies did not form on the northern
fan margin. Therefore it is possible to suppose that the fan
was blocked on its northern side by the synsedimentary fault.
The elevation of the outer Rača Zone obstructed coarse-
grained gravity currents flowing to the N over the thin-bed-
ded flysch. Thus, the elevated plane with thin-bedded flysch
deposition occasionally interrupted the turbidites of glauco-
nitic sandstones (Fig. 3). This is proved by the lack of the
glauconitic sandstones in the Upper Beloveža Beds (Sub-
magura Member) in the outer Rača (Siary) Zone. The Pasier-
biec sandstone type occurs in the Javorníky Mts in the simi-
lar stratigraphic position as well as eastward in Poland
(Książkiewicz 1966). The sedimentation of the Pasierbiec
sandstone type was replaced in Poland by the thin-bedded
sedimentation of the Hieroglyphic Beds. The equivalent of
the Upper Luhačovice Beds was not found in Poland (l.c.).
The Magura Basin underwent significant paleogeographical
changes during the late Middle Eocene (Lutetian). The period
of the subsided and uplifted basin floor blocks followed rather
flattened subsidence of the basin floor. The separation of the
zones with prevailing coarse-clastic and pelitic sedimentation
terminated. Two extensive depositional fans spread parallel to
the basin elongation (glauconitic and Magura fan, Fig. 6).
They were supported by clastic material. The sediments de-
posited by these fans reached thicknesses of up to 1000 m.
The clastic material of the quartz glauconitic sandstones origi-
nated from the northern margin of the Magura Basin (Silesian
Ridge). The paleocurrent directions of the two fans were par-
allel to the Magura Basin elongation (from the ENE), but the
paleocurrent directions of the glauconitic sandstones in the
area N-NW of the Babia hora Mt were perpendicular to the
Magura Basin margin (Cieszkowski et al. 1999). This could
be one of the glauconitic sandstones source inflow areas. This
paleogeographical situation lasted from the Late Lutetian to
the Late Eocene (possible longer).
The quartz glauconitic sandstones of sugar-like appear-
ance are another type of the sandstones (Te ák in Mello et al.
2005). These sandstones have only 0.1—0.2 % glauconite.
The sandstones are off-white, well mineral- and grain-sorted
quartzy sandstones. Their parting surface has a grainy sugar-
like appearance. The beds are 1 to 3 m thick. The sandstones
are massive or with water escape structures in the lower part
of the bed (Lowe’s S
division). They have weak parallel
lamination in the upper part of the bed (T
sion). Besides the quartzite and glauconite the sandstones
contain also feldspar and the abundant flakes of muscovite.
Its earliest occurrence is in the Upper Luhačovice Beds in
the southernmost Rača Unit. Later they formed thinner sepa-
rated intercalations in the Babiše and Kýčera Beds. These
sandstones did not form a well developed fan, but they
formed just occasional lobes between the glauconitic and
Magura fans. The source of the sedimentary material was the
Silesian Ridge. This source supplied mature clastic material
to the Magura Basin from the NE (Fig. 6).
The Magura sandstone type is represented in this area by
the Kýčera Beds. This sandstone type also forms the Magura
Formation of the muscovite facies, Piwniczna, Mniszek,
Kowaniec and Poprad Members in Poland (Birkenmajer &
Oszczypko 1989). Its sedimentation took place during the
Early Eocene to Oligocene (see Potfaj et al 1991; Oszczyp-
ko-Clowes 2001; Oszczypko et al. 2005). The Magura sand-
stone type is represented by the lithic wacke sandstones.
They are mostly fine- to medium-grained thick-bedded mas-
sive sandstones with T
Bouma’s division (or Lowe’s S
vision). The sandstones contain commonly disseminated
coarse grains. Their beds are 40—250 cm thick. Unweathered
sandstones are blue-grey. Weathered sandstones are rusty
grey-brown and display typical water escape structures. The
Bouma’s division are usually accompanied by
frequent shale intraclasts, abundant muscovite and coalified
plant detritus in the uppermost part of the layers. The petro-
logical composition of the sandstones is found further from
the cusp of Quartzite in the QFL diagram. Majority of points
in petrographic analyses fall into the field of the recycled
orogene source area or on its border (Fig. 4) (Dickinson &
Suczek 1979). The immaturity of the sedimentary material
and high amount of lithic clasts are the signs of the recycled
orogen source. The orogen supplying clastic material of the
Magura sandstone type situated probably to the South of the
Magura Basin. The source entered into the basin approxi-
mately in the East Slovak part of the Magura Nappe. The
erosion eroded the orogen prograding to the North into the
basin. It is possible that the source was just the accretionary
prism in front of the orogen (Inner Westen Carpathians). The
sediment supply entered the basin from the South and then
turned westward. This fan was situated parallel to the basin
elongation (Marschalko & Potfaj 1982; Potfaj et al. 1991). It
was the largest fan in the Magura Basin with more than
250 km in length and 100 km in width. This could be inter-
preted following lithofacies and paleocurrent measurements
(Stráník 1965; Bromowicz 1992).
The paleocurrent systems of both glauconitic and Magura
sandstone types in the Javorníky Mts are directed from the
NE to SW (Fig. 5). This system of two fans lasted after the
sedimentation of the Beloveža and Luhačovice Formations
during the Middle Eocene. The subduction along the south-
ern margin of the Magura Basin progressed from the Middle
Eocene. In its consequence the fan of the Magura sandstone
type was pushed to the North in front of the orogen by the
advancing fans. Along the southern margin of the basin the
Racibor and Malcov Formations were deposited (Potfaj et al.
1991). These formations represent marginal facies with
slumps, slides and other unusual facies. The progradation of
the Magura sandstone type fan could effect migration of the
glauconitic sandstone type fan to the North from the Bystrica
and Lower Luhačovice Beds to the Vsetín Beds (Fig. 3). The
Magura and glauconitic sandstone type deposition systems
coexisted simultaneously side by side during the Middle to
Late Eocene (Zlín Formation, compare Stráník 1965 from
East Slovakia, Te ák 2005b). Both fan systems interfingered
each other. This can be demonstrated by the alternation of
both types of sandstone in the middle of the Rača Zone (Čer-
tovy kameny and Luhačovice Anticlinal Zones – Babiše
Beds – Te ák in Mello et al. 2005; Te ák 2005b; Stráník
The relation of the Magura sandstone type to the glauco-
nitic sandstone type is evident in the Babiše Beds of the
Medvedie Anticlinal Zone (Rača Unit, Fig. 3), but the super-
position of those interfingering fans is less known in the old-
er formations. The Bystrica Beds are another formation
where this relation was observed. The intercalations of the
Magura sandstone type occur among the glauconitic sand-
stone type beds. This relation was observed on the contact of
the Bystrica and Krynica (Oravská Magura) Unit south-east-
ward from the Nová Bystrica village in the Kysuce and Ora-
va regions (Potfaj et al. 2003).
Discussion – fan models
Representative models of the deep-sea fans have been of-
fered by Reading & Richards (1994). The western part of the
Magura Basin is characterized by deep-sea fans with single
point sandy and muddy-sandy sources sensu l.c. Reading &
Richards (1994) characterized the sandy source fan type as
follows – size of the fan: moderate; length: 10—100 km;
shape: radial/lobate; the slope gradient: 2.5—36 m/km;
source area (size and distance): moderate/small, close; feed-
ing: by shelf failure or canyon; sand percentage: > 70 %;
principal architectural elements: proximal area – channels;
distal area: channelized lobes; channel system: braided to
low sinuosity impersistent channels and chutes, rapid lateral
They also characterized the muddy-sandy source fan type
as follows – size of the fan: large-moderate; length: 10—
450 km; shape: lobate; the slope gradient: 2.5—18 m/km;
source area (size and distance): moderate; feeding: large del-
ta and/or canyon; sand percentage: 30—70 %; principal archi-
tectural elements: channel levees; distal area: lobes; channel
system: moderate scale, meandering to braided systems lat-
erally migrating with levees.
The deep-sea fans of the Magura Basin can also be evalu-
ated according to these criterions (Table 1). The Soláň sand-
stone type formed the depositional wedge along the Silesian
Ridge margin. This wedge was probably formed by several
overlapping small-sized fans.
The Riečky and Pasierbiec sandstone types deposited in
the single-point sandy source deep-sea fan depositional sys-
tem (sensu Reading & Richards 1994). The sources of these
sandstone types were of sandy character. The supply of the
mature material from the platform source and admixture of
the shelf character material was typical for the Bystrica and
Lower Luhačovice Beds.
The glauconitic and Magura depositional systems were
different. In this case it is possible to admit one (or maybe
several) point sources. The Magura sandstone type was de-
posited in a wide deep-sea fan from a sandy source. The sed-
imentary material supplied by these sources originated in the
recycled orogen on the basis of the petrographic analyses.
The material of the glauconitic sandstones was supplied by a
muddy-sandy or sandy source with a platform character.
The results of the petrographic analyses of the sandstones
from the Javorníky Mts area confirm the division of sand-
stones into four fundamental petrographic groups: the Soláň,
Riečky, glauconitic and Magura groups. These groups repre-
sent four main source areas of the sedimentary material sup-
plied into the western part of the Magura Basin during the
Paleogene. The deposition lasted in the western part of the
Magura Basin from the Late Cretaceous to Oligocene. It
passed through several evolutionary stages: marginal wedge,
longitudinal fans, north-eastern source and recycled orogen.
Table 1: Characteristics of the fans deposited in the western part of the Magura Basin.
A massive, to-the-basin prograding
wedge of the Soláň Formation was
sedimented along the northern mar-
gin of the Magura Basin during the
Late Cretaceous to Early Paleocene.
Several sources supplied sedimentary
material to the basin mainly perpen-
dicularly from the Silesian Ridge to
the South. This source formed sever-
al overlapping small-sized fans. The
sedimentation of this sandstone
wedge passes gradually from the
proximal “wild-flysch” along the ba-
PALEOGENE DEPOSITIONAL SYSTEMS AND PALEOGEOGRAPHY OF THE SUBMARINE FANS (SLOVAKIA)
sin margin, through the massive sandstone wedge to the thin-
bedded distal flysch sedimentation.
The central zone of the basin probably subsided more sig-
nificantly from the later Early Paleocene. Therefore the clas-
tic sedimentation shifted from the margin into the deeper
part of the basin in the Rača Zone after the sedimentation of
the Soláň sandstone type. The depositional fans of the
Riečky and Pasierbiec sandstone type were formed there.
The clastic material of the Riečky sandstone type was trans-
ported in the longitudinal direction from the West from the
Middle Paleocene. The eastern part of the Silesian Ridge was
uplifted during the Middle Eocene. This source supplied
glauconitic sandstones to the basin from the NE and it initi-
ated deposition of the proximal coarse-grained Pasierbiec
sandstone type and pelitic distal facies. Sedimentation of the
Riečky sandstone type was renewed once more during the
Middle Eocene. This reappearance of the Riečky sandstone
type sedimentation was only in a reduced volume.
The Magura Basin underwent significant paleogeographi-
cal changes during the late Middle Eocene (Lutetian). The
period of the subsided and uplifted basin floor blocks was
followed by rather flattened subsidence of the basin floor.
The separation of the coarse-clastic fans against distal pelitic
sedimentation terminated. Two extensive depositional fans
developed parallel to the basin elongation – glauconitic and
Magura sandstone type fans. These fans prograded from the
South into the Rača sedimentation area. Their current sys-
tems were directed from the NE to SW in the Javorníky Mts.
Both fan systems interfingered each other. The clastic mate-
rial of the glauconitic sandstones originated from the plat-
form-type Silesian Ridge. The material of the Magura sand-
stone type probably originated from the South. It was the
recycled material from the front of the prograding orogen.
Uplift of the Silesian source area advanced from the W to
the E. Its result was the shifting of the source of the sedimen-
tary material in the same direction. The maturity of the sedi-
ments gradually increased in the same way. Accumulation of
the clastic sediments was controlled mainly by subsidence of
the basin floor, by the local sediment supply and by the
progress of the subduction of the southern Magura Basin
margin. The distribution and shape of the deep-sea deposi-
tional systems was significantly influenced by basin topog-
raphy. For example, the northern, rather sharp boundary of
the Luhačovice Formation represents the synsedimentary
(tectonic) subsidence boundary. This boundary inhibited the
Pasierbiec and Riečky sandstone types to over-flow to the
North over the uplifted Upper Beloveža Beds. The Magura
Basin floor was segmented probably by abundant longitudi-
nal synsedimentary depressions and lifted plains. This held
sedimentation of the fans in a longitudinal direction. The
shapes of the fans were also influenced by the depositional
pressure of the adjacent fan as in the case of the contact of
the Magura and glauconitic fans.
Acknowledgment: The author would like to express his
gratitude to Dr. Michal Potfaj for the critical and construc-
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