Saturday, September 16, 2017

Elfvik Quarries

I've been sick, and with painful feet problems for a long time. I wanted to get out today, to test if I can move around. Or breathe outside air. I chose to visit the Elfvik Quarries in Espoo, near Villa Elfvik.

The idea to visit these places came from the excellent book on mines in Helsinki and nearby: Saltikoff, Laitakari, Kinnunen, Oivanen: Helsingin seudun vanhat kaivokset ja louhokset, available conveniently in PDF!

It is surprising how much mining activity there has been here in the last 400-500 years. Small mines, mostly, except in the Kaivoksela area where you have mine shafts running down 60 meters. In Elfvik, the quarries are for making granite blocks for construction. The quarries are recent, as the operations only begun in the early 1900s and ended in 1960s.

On page 57 of the book there's a quote about the Elfvik quarries from Hannes Lae (some kind of financial director, but what do they know?), where he criticises the "party lifestyle" of the quarry men. But I'm sure they worked pretty hard, splitting blocks of granite is hard work... and living on the rock hill as they did, must not have been easy either.

There's a lot of small quarries in the area, I didn't count all of them, but here are the main ones that I visited:

I also wonder why the book uses the spelling "Elvvik", whereas the current place names around are always in the form "Elfvik". Anybody know?

Oh, and what about my illness and foot? They didn't get any better, in fact my foot started to hurt a lot, and I started coughing. Maybe it is too early for even these kinds of small excursions. Back to resting :-(

Bolts in the rock face:

Quarry 2, barely visible:

Quarry 4:

Quarry 5:

Quarry 6:

Quarry 7:

Photos (c) 2017 by Jari Arkko

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