There are two abandoned bauxite mines in Vértes, at the southern tip of Gánt: nature has started to reclaim one of them, but the Danube-Ipoly National Park had a different goal with the other one. Today, an exciting study trail leads to an amazing location in the old open-cast bauxite mine at the foot of Bagoly Hill. As you walk along the path that was made to paint a picture of the open-cast mining that used to take place here, you can see mementoes left behind by various geohistorical eras. You can learn about what happened in this Martian landscape over millions of years. The colours, layers and shapes brought to the surface by the mining will enchant you: the mine wall is about 28 metres high and the dolomite bedrock has shades ranging from yellowish to purple-red due to the presence of various minerals.
When was the mine discovered?
A significant karst bauxite deposit was found in Gánt in 1920, and open-pit mining started in 1926. In the 1930s, this was one of the world's best-known bauxite mines, and its entire capacity was seized by the German military industry during World War II. At its peak production in 1953 the mine produced 600,000 tonnes. At that time, pits were being opened one after the other, and bauxite was mined in five places around Gánt. The sites were exhausted by the 1980s, and mining ended in 1987.