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Nāruža Devil's Ditch (Nāružas Velna grāvis)

Other references to the location
Between Mazozoli Spiļvas homestead and 302 Found


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Spēliņi homestead of Ērgļi
lat=56.9302777778, lon=25.5380555556
56° 55' 49" N, 25° 32' 17" E

Nāruža is a small river which before the stony ravine or the Devil’s ditch has run into a wide and swampy valley. Further there is a natural dam in the river through which the river has cut the ravine. Here the Nāruža River serves as a border beween Ogre and Ērgļi parishes. In the Ērgļi side where there is Baltiņi homestead, the bank of the river valley has been used as pasture, the opposite bank in the side of Ogre parish has overgrown with underbrush and long grass. It must be taken into account that the moraine the river is cutting through is very stony because the river bed is full of big stones covered with green moss which might have rolled into the river from both sides of the valley. The stony river bed – the Devil’s Ditch – is approximately 100 m long, around 30 m wide, with 4 – 5 m height diffrence between the river source and mouth, the steep slopes of both banks approach very close to the river which in this place runs under the stones. Further the banks gradually retreat and the amount of stones decreases, although the river bed remains stony for about a kilometre. The stony Nāruža River generally leaves a naturally wild and monumental impression which might be connected with the sacral activities of the eternal mythological character of Devil. In legends the Devil’s Ditch is connected with the Devil’s Lap, which is located around 300m SE from the Devil’s Ditch on Ogre side.


See attachment

Extremely attractive site with a big development potential.
From the Rīga side access road the walk should proceed across fields and bushes, there is no path; when coming from the Ērgļi side there is a path and a recreation site.
Infrastructure, management, facilities
From the highway there are local significance gravel roads, a path.
Local info
10 - 40
Legal Status
At the highway Rīga – Ērgļi where reconstruction work is going on, there is an indicator “Velna grāvis 3.1 km”. On this road after 3 km at a side of the country round there is another saying “Velna klēpis”, however, there are no other directions and the finding of the site is complicated if no other information is obtained. The accidentally met wood sawers said that to find the Devil’s Lap one should walk some 200 m along a hardly visible path. When walking along the indicated path it finished with unmown grass in an overgrown field. Later it was understood that what was meant by the sign “Velna klēpis” is the Devil’s Ditch or the stony valley of the Nāruža River. Nevertheless, the Devil’s Lap is a different place. Spiļvas homestead is not populated currently.

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