Shortly about the region and the deepest cave in the world

The West Caucasus may be called a paradise of the cavers. There are 4 caves in this region, which go deeper than 1.5 km: the deepest cave in the world Krubera – Voronya (– 2191 m), the system of caves Ilyuziya – Mezhonogo – Snezhnaya (– 1753 m), caves Sarma (– 1760 m) and V. Pantyukhin (– 1508 m). All these caves are within the top ten deepest caves in the world.


About Krubera – Voronya cave:


The cave Krubera – Voronya (Rus: Крубера – Воронья) is known as the deepest cave on Earth.


Its depth is – 2191 m (± 9 m). It is the only cave deeper than 2 km. The entrance to the cave is 2256 m above the sea level. It is located in the mountains of West Caucasus, Gagra range (Georgia, Abkhazia’s territory), Arabika massif. The cave belongs to the Arabika system of caves.


The GPS coordinates of the Krubera – Voronya cave are: 43° 24′ 35″ N, 40° 21′ 44″ E.

Until 1983 Krubera – Voronya cave was known by the name of Sibirskaya. In the beginning of 80's the cave was explored to the depth of – 340 m and forgotten for almost three decades. In 1999 intensive explorations were restarted after the Ukrainian expedition found a new passage at the depth of – 230 m and reached the depth of – 700 m.

History of exploration:

2000 August: Team of Ukrainian cavers explored the cave down to – 1200 m.

2000 September: Ukrainian Speleogical Association (UkrSA) and MTDE teams continued the exploration down to – 1440 m.

2001 January: UkrSA and Cavex teams discovered two new passages which led to – 1710m.

2003 August: Cavex and Kiev Club team dived the sump at – 1410 m (also known as "Sump 1"), discovered new passages and reached the depth of – 1680 m.

2004 July: Cavex team continued the explorations in the new passage until they encountered a new sump at – 1775 m.

2004 August: UkrSA team discovered a side passage at – 1680 m which led to another sump at – 1840 m.

2004 October: UkrSA team continued the explorations down to – 2080 m. For the first time in the history of speleology this team crossed a line of – 2000 m.

2005 July: Cavex team dived the sump at the depth of – 1980 m and explored 160 m down. This led to the depth of – 2140 m.

2007 September: A member of UkrSA and an experienced caver Genadiy Samokhin dived 50 m into the sump “Two Captains” and reached – 2191 m, which is a current cave depth world record!