What are Pot Holes?

In common understanding, potholes are viewed as the impacts of erosion by streams and waterways over significant periods. The genuine work of scraped spot is considered to have been done either by hard grains of sand held in suspension by the quickly streaming water; or by huge stones, called “processors,” in the base of the pothole, that were fomented continually by the current twirling around inside. The modest grains in the fast flows are thought to have step by step worn out the stone into a downturn, the movement of the processors developed that. 

Pot Holes

Thinking about the momentous profundities of potholes, this procedure would appear to require extraordinary periods. Alexander noted one case of 12 feet in breadth and 60 feet deep at Taylor Falls. (Alexander, p. 305). Customary topography experiences no difficulty pleasing such prolonged period ranges; however, a creationist translation requires this sort of impact in only two or three thousand years, in the time passed since the Biblical flood. (Morris, 1974). 

Taylor Falls

The gradualness of the procedure of scraped area by which the potholes should have been shaped appears to demonstrate the holes would belong ages in development. However, this issue is additionally intensified by the way that by far, most of all, potholes are not during the time spent arrangement right now. They are now and again a long way from the courses of streams or waterways, and many are topped off with stones and sand or different garbage. 


If they have been framed by erosion, the procedure has since a long time ago finished. The time since they were finished, together with the timeframe they were presently arrangement, appears to indicate an extensive age for the most recent sedimentary rocks of the earth in which they happen. Positively this is an issue for creationist geologists. How is it to be settled? 

Potholes from streams and valleys

Potholes that happen a long way from streams and valleys, at times high up on slopes and mountains, are clarified by geologists as the impacts of the incredible ice periods of the Quaternary. Apparently, during this time, there were potholes shaped when the ice liquefied, as waterways streamed underneath the ice and on its surface. In some cases, these surface waterways plunged down a chasm, and disintegrated the bedrock underneath, framing potholes on the most remote spots, the glacier scholars’ guarantee. 

The ice periods of the Quaternary are considered to have kept going from around 2,000,000 years back until around 10,000 years prior. In each one of those zones that have been glaciated, there possess been adequate energy for a front of vegetation to create, after the ice dissolved. This shows potholes on peaks and mountainsides, as they are directly comprehended, point to expanded appraisals of the age of the world’s surface highlights. 

However, systems of geologic understandings, including the flood, have proposed ice ages after the storm (Whitcomb and Morris, 1961, p. 292-303). This implies all potholes that are by and by clarified as the impacts of icy “moulins” shaped while the ice was spread thickly over the landmasses. In contrast, the majority of the ice softened, and consequently, trees developed, and so on – this occurred, as indicated by these understandings, since the flood! 

Potholes: Problem for Creationists 

Potholes present a critical issue for creationist geologists, since they happen in the highest “strong” sedimentary strata, just as in the more established rocks. These stones are here and there related to stores of the flood. However, the nearness of potholes in them demonstrates they are, in certainty, ancient. 

Problem for Creationists

Will the potholes be clarified separated from the presumption of an incredible age of the earth? Could there be another clarification of their source, aside from the one that is commonly acknowledged today? Most geologists expect that potholes have been cut by streams and waterways, by scraped area of grains of sand and stones against the bedrock. Let us investigate this understanding of the starting point, and see whether it is conceivable to represent the marvels truly. 

Undoubtedly potholes frequently happen in the beds of streams and waterways. However, they are not limited to the courses of present-day streams, as they additionally happen on the beach, on slope tops, and steeply inclining rocks where it is hard to envision any previous stream. Alexander noted (Alexander, p. 308): 

They are commonly found in the beds of streams or relinquished stream channels. Many are found, be that as it may, where the nearness of a stream whenever in the past seems hard to illustrate. In Norway, many show up along the coast close to the ocean level and near the water edge. 

Potholes are not restricted to stream beds. Those in the Taylor’s Falls region in Minnesota are not throughout the waterway, yet many are on precipices high over the stream bed. Some were found only after a covering of rock had been expelled. Upham composed (Upham, 1900, p. 29): 

The unique number was initially unfilled, or with just a fractional filling of adjusted pounding stones, residue, mud, or peat, contrasting much in their substance. Others, for the most of small size, were found filled, and some were secured and covered up by a hard store of icy float, practically ordinary till. 

Close to Elk City, Idaho, gold diggers had scratched off a layer of rock from the bedrock, uncovering a few potholes. It was assumed that a stream had previously streamed there. Teacher George H. Stone portrayed it (Upham, p. 29): 

On the slopes between Red Horse and American waterways, the diggers have washed away the overlying rock. The stone underneath the rock is specially smoothed and cleaned, yet is lopsided, containing many adjusted despondencies bowls, and potholes up to 5 feet inside and out. There was an expansive stream that streamed up and over slopes and valleys. 

Upham likewise announced that the “mammoths’ pots” at Christiania, Norway (presently Oslo), when previously found, were discovered covered under a layer of rock. This rock was painstakingly expelled, and a record kept of the profundity and places of the stones, and so on., that were found. Upham composed (Upham, p. 39): 

Taking up the topic of the plausible age or phase of the Ice Age in which the Christiania goliaths’ pots were disintegrated, we are gone up against by the event of marine shorelines and shells in stores overlying the icy float, which exhibit that during the hour of the icy downturn there the land was discouraged around 600 feet beneath its present stature. It is difficult to credit the moulins and potholes to the large office so far underneath the ocean level, and thus they should have a place at Christiania with the previous time of high land height and snow amassing. 

Along these lines, at the well-known Christiania (Oslo) site, the potholes were discovered covered under a layer of rock. This is commonplace of numerous pothole discoveries. One was found during unearthings under a house in Buffalo, N.Y. A comparative discovery prompted the improvement of Glacier Gardens, in Lucerne, Switzerland. Alexander composed (Alexander, p. 305): 

The extraordinary potholes of the Glacier Garden at Lucerne, Switzerland, have energized the marvel of two ages of voyagers. At that place, a gathering of potholes was found in 1872 during the way toward uncovering for a cellar in the chilly float. Later the float was evacuated, revealing more than 30 holes unpredictably gathered in waterworn and striated bedrock. 

It is reasonable to assume, when potholes are found under a layer of rock and sand, that there was a previous waterway in the region, at the same time, since numerous potholes are found a long way from waterway courses, and profoundly covered, would it not be similarly sensible to assume, since these potholes were discovered separated from the course of any stream, that their arrangement in this way has nothing to do with ebbs and flows and stream erosion? Surely this would be sensible. 

What is more, moreover, those that happen in the courses of streams today probably will not have been cut by the present stream, yet only uncovered when the ebbs and flows cleaned out the free sand. A similar procedure, of washing the bedrock clean of layers of rock, would clarify the nearness of the potholes at the coastline. They were at that point there, covered under a layer of sand advertisement rock, until the waves washed the bedrock clean of its spread, and the potholes were uncovered. 

For if the ocean had been beating the shores where the bedrock was secured with a slight layer of rock, the sand would be washed away soon and the highlights underneath uncovered, including potholes. The water would not have cut them, yet only uncovered them. What is more, the equivalent applies to streams. 

Reasonable Cause: Water Erosion? 

It is fascinating that with regards to the geologic writing on potholes, there is not a reference to them that does not partner them with flows and erosion. That potholes are framed by scraped area, in streams, is a profoundly imbued maxim. Anyway, impossible it might appear, it is underestimated that any place potholes are discovered, a stream more likely than not disintegrated them, even where they happen directly on the highest points of slopes or cliffs. 

An especially noteworthy case of this happens close Archbald, Pennsylvania, where, in 1884 and 1885, two huge potholes were found in coal mining, Below around 15 feet of float, the central hole found was exhumed, and saw as 38 feet down, with a breadth of around 15 feet at the base, expanding to a limit of 42 feet, and a width of 24 feet over the top. The subsequent pothole expanded a profundity of 50 feet in the bedrock (Upham, p. 38). Another unusual case of potholes on high slopes was referenced by (Alexander, p 312): 

For such potholes as those on the high quartzite feign east of Devil’s Lake, Wisconsin, it must be accepted either that this feigns glaciated-which it was not-or that some old stream streaming several feet over the present lake level over the then-covered quartzite edge disintegrated the holes in rapids coursing down its southern slant.

Regardless of how implausible it might appear, most geologists expect that waterways have consistently framed potholes, yet it is very sensible to reason since potholes happen in territories that are probably not going to have at any point been the site of a stream, that their development is not identified with waterway activity. 

In any case, geologists, as a rule, decipher the centrality of potholes the other path round. N. R. Hanson stated, “there are no uninterpreted realities.” Observations, for example, those just cited, are communicated regarding specific, thoughtful details. All “information,” Hanson says, is “hypothesis loaded.” (Hanson, 1958; referred to in Barbour, 1971. p. 139). Interpretative contemplating potholes all-around show this. 

Rather than expecting that potholes probably been cut by erosion in streams, let us attempt to be objective, and decide if the realities affirm this supposition. As has been appeared, examples of dissemination of potholes do not affirm it. They happen in regions where it appears to be most far-fetched that a stream could have existed.


  • On the Interpretation of Potholes. (n.d.). Retrieved from creationconcept: https://creationconcept.info/pothart.html
  • Pothole Landforms. (n.d.). Retrieved from World and Landforms: http://worldlandforms.com/landforms/pothole/
  • Potholes. (n.d.). Retrieved from geo.mtu,edu: http://www.geo.mtu.edu/KeweenawGeoheritage/The_Fault/Potholes.html
  • River Landforms. (n.d.). Retrieved from weebly: http://thebritishgeographer.weebly.com/river-landforms.html
  • River Potholes: Modern and Ancient. (n.d.). Retrieved from Digital commons: https://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1048&context=diffendal
  • The relationship between diameter and depth of potholes eroded by running water. (n.d.). Retrieved from ScienceDirect: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1674775518301495
  • Alexander, H. S. 1932. Pothole erosion, Journal of Geology, 40 ( 4 ): 305-337. 
  • Barbour, 1. G. 1971. Issues in science and religion. Harper & Row, Publishers, N.Y., London. Paperback edition, p. 139. 
  • Fairbridge, R W. Editor. 1968. Encyclopedia of geomorphology. Reinhold Book Corp., N.Y. 
  • Foster, R. J. 1971. Physical geology. Chas. E. Merrill, Publishers, Columbus, Ohio. 
  • Hanson, N. R. 1958. Patterns of Discovery. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 
  • Higgins, C. G. 1957. Origin of potholes in glaciated regions, Journal of Glaciology, 3 (21):11-12. 
  • Morris, H. M. 1974. Diversity of opinions found in Creationism, Creation Research Society Quarterly, 11(3):173-175. 
  • Stone, G H. 1900. Note on the glaciation of Central Idaho, American Journal of Science, Fourth series, 9 ( 49 ):9-12. 
  • Upham, W. 1900. Giant’s kettles eroded by moulin torrents, Bulletin of the Geological Society of America, Vol. 12, pp. 25-44. 
  • von Engeln, 0. D. 1942. Geomorphology. Macmillan Co., N.Y. 
  • Whitcomb, J. C. and H. M. Morris. 1961. The Genesis Flood. The Presbyterian & Reformed Publishing Co., Philadelphia, Pa.. 

Cite/Link to This Article

  • "Potholes". Geography Revision. Accessed on March 3, 2021. https://geography-revision.co.uk/a-level/physical/potholes/.

  • "Potholes". Geography Revision, https://geography-revision.co.uk/a-level/physical/potholes/. Accessed 3 March, 2021.

  • Potholes. Geography Revision. Retrieved from https://geography-revision.co.uk/a-level/physical/potholes/.