under the ceiling



An old uranium mine – once mysterious – turned into a tourist attraction today. 

An interesting dive site. But is it for everyone? ...

Our story begins sometime in the 12th century, when one Laurentius Angelus came to today’s Kowary, discovered iron deposits and began extraction of ores in Lower Silesia. 

The most important part of this story, of course, is mining uranium ore. However, before anyone cared about uranium, the Germans,living in the area of the Sudeten Mountains, mostly extracted iron ore. The largest German iron ore mine FREEDOM (“Bergfreiheit”) is founded. ...

#Mexico #Caves #Yucatan


Well-known worldwide for their beautiful underwater topography, which includes extensive corridors, narrow passages, wells, tunnels and chambers, numerous rock formations such as stalactites, stalagmites, stalagnates, creating beautiful and picturesque underwater landscapes. But let’s start from the beginning. 

#Cave #Lot #France #Ressel


Emergence du Ressel is a famous cave in France’s southern department Lot. Its furthest reaches have already been explored by many famous divers. But you don't have to descend 4 km deep into the pit to appreciate its magic.

Finally!!! We can go visit Lot again. This time for a week of training and then another week of diving vacation with my wife. I have some students lined up for their Intro-To-Cave Diver course. 

#Boensmansgat cave #Depth world record #South Africa


The first women’s depth record attempt dive took place on the 26th March 2021 in the Boesmansgat Cave, Mount Carmel Safaris Farm, Northern Cape, South Africa. On my descent I passed the first 2 tags (226m and 231 m) and upon reaching the 236m tag I hesitated briefly considering if I should continue to the next tag but decided to stop at the 3rd tag of 236 m. 

#Picos de Europa #Cave #Spain


A gentle light shines on a small fragment of a ten-millimeter rope. It is not much thicker than my finger. I look up... I cannot see the end. I look down and cannot see the end as well. I increase the power of the diode mounted on my helmet. In the far distance, I see the walls of the pit in which I’m hanging with my diving cylinder inside a bag attached to me, which weights a dozen or so kilograms. In a moment like this, endless thoughts are running through my head and not all of them are positive.

#Felicitas #Schmallenberger Sauerland #Germany #Mine

German Slate Mine

The mine was opened in 1850 and owned by the company Hesse & Schneider KG until 1990. It was then sold to the company Magog GmbH & Co. KG which also holds the only current slate in North Rhine-Westphalia.

The mine was opened via an inclined shaft with a length of approximately 130 m and a ventilation shaft. It consists of two footbridges at a depth of 32 and 46 m. 

#Nuttlar #Lime Stone Mine #Germany


From the middle of the 19th century Nuttlar lived mainly from slate extraction from the local mine. Five men founded the Gessner company in 1857 and through constant modernisation the business developed favourably, so that in 1878 it was approved for underground mining. This was the beginning of "the Nuttlar slate mine". 

#The Cavettes #Caves #Female diver


Take three female diving instructors with one shared passion, add some water and boom: The Cavettes is born! (Well it wasn’t as simple as that:)

In 2020 we met on social media, and despite being from across Europe, bonded over each other’s passion for diving, adventures posts and photos. 

#Tuna Hastberg #Sweden


Somewhere in the middle of nowhere, 197 km away from Stockholm in a straight line, 250 km away from Oslo, Norway, 542 km from Copenhagen, Denmark and 970 km from Warsaw, there is a magical place. It is hidden between mighty spruce trees of an old Scandinavian forest. Just at the outskirts of a small town, quite often covered with pure white snow, particularly in December, when I last visited it. 

#Denée #Belgium #Black marble mine #Mine

Belgian black marble mine

The Carriere is a well-known mine among Belgian/Dutch cave divers. Once I also took my first steps in cave diving here. This mine is an hour's drive from my house, so I regularly spend some time there with my buddy Willem Verrycken. However, the mine is closed off with a fence.

To get access you have to be a member of the VVS or UBS, I am a member of the VVS (Flemish Association of Speleologists) through my speleoclub Sience Explorers. 

#Germany #Willingen #Slate mine


Willingen and surroundings. Although the area is mostly known for skiing and ski jumping, there are other reasons for trips there! For several years I have been visiting the mines in West Germany in the autumn. It started modestly, I don't remember exactly when. Grześ said: come, it's not deep, but it's fun. He wasn't wrong. This time the goal was four mines. Three I already knew, the fourth, deepest was a new item on our agenda.  

#Germany #Willingen #Mine #Christine

Christine Mine

The Christine mine has been tempting us for quite a long time. Shrouded in mystery and inaccessible, with a gloomy feel and well-preserved equipment dating back to its golden times, yet at the same time luring with perfect visibility and very well-prepared corridors.

The Christine mine is a slate mine located in Willingen, Sauerland in Germany, which has been operated for over 100 years. One can explore its four massive beds, 2 to 20 meters thick and 350 to 400 million years old. After it was closed in 1971, the mine’s passages were opened for visitors. 

#Salt mine #Wieliczka #Poland


Sitting at 101 meters below ground, the Barącza Chamber has a certain magic aura to it. Imagine a dark exploitation hollow, illuminated by nothing except scarce floodlights, with wooden balconies spanning up the walls, barely visible in the darkness. The bottom of the chamber was filled with light green water, glittering in the gleam of the floodlights. Actually not water but rather a saturated saline solution, unable to dissolve another grain of salt – not even a tiniest one. As a consequence, evaporating water caused particles to precipitate and fall to the bottom of the lake, reminiscent of white “snow”. 

#Mine #Maria Concordia #Sobótka #Poland

A new place on the diving map of Poland

People who enjoy diving in confined spaces – be it mines or caves or other anthropogenic creations – do not have an easy life in Poland. Flooded caves in our country are only short siphons found in the depths of dry parts of caves, primarily in the Tatra mountains, access to which requires rather advanced knowledge of speleological techniques. It's a bit better with the mines, but we are still talking here mainly about short, shallow, often very unstable locations known only to a handful of enthusiasts.  

#Germany #Limestone mine #Miltitz

An old limestone mine between Dresden and Meissen

Diving in Miltitz is only possible for a few months in the year and only after signing up previously for a specific date. Diving dates are announced at the beginning of the season and the entire season is quickly booked by divers ‘in advance’, so it is not unusual that trying to sign up for the dive we will have to wait even a year, until the next season.

Registration is only possible through two diving schools: Tauchtreff Dresden (Peter Panitz) and Cave-diving.de (Udo Krause). The diving costs 40 euros and the advance payment is made at the time of registration.

#Slovakia #Opals mine #Dubnik


For the first time I heard about the opal mine in Dubnik around 2012. Being just a "deep" diver, fascinated with ‘overhead’ dives, I thought that I could only dream about diving in this place... And there really was something to dream about – crystal clear water, walls in an unusual orange tint, numerous wooden remains of mine infrastructure, and even overgrown with sediments tracks, which a long, long time ago were used to transport the mine production. All these staggered the imagination and I couldn’t   forget it.

#Veneto #Italy #Elefante Bianco #Veci #Siori #Fontanazzi #Cave


The Veneto region in Italy is a must for every cave diver. Today we will bring you closer to the four most famous caves in this area.

When planning a dive in the Veneto region, it is worth remembering that a special permit is needed for cave diving – it is a formality dealt with electronically, but without permission you may not be able to dive.

#France #Lot #Dordogne #Cave


Lot and Dordogne are for us, divers, magical places in France, full of beautiful karst caves, hidden between mountains and picturesque villages, in the area of the Dordogne, Lot and Cele rivers.

This area is the cradle of French cave diving, a paradise for cave divers. There are about 30 dive sites in this area, not always easily accessible, but certainly worth visiting.

#Xulo #Mexico #Cenotes

The Cave of the Swallows

Some call it the cenote Uku Cuzam or the Cave of the Swallows, in Spanish it is la Cueva de las Golondrinas and this is what it is written on the wooden road sign that you can see after passing the village of Muyil. But who met the kind and brave man that used to watch after the garden of the cave until he passed away in 2014, would simply name it after him: ’Xulo’ (dzulo).

Among a variety of cenotes explored so far in the Quintana Roo State of Mexico and dived extensively now by a growing population of cave divers, Xulo’s singularity comes from the outstanding beauty and diversity of passages that will not leave any cave diver indifferent.

#Caves #Bosnia


Right next to the car are piles of cylinders, cave bags, backpacks, a compressor, a tent and a lot of other stuff difficult even to name. I can't believe that in a moment all these things and the three of us, namely Wiktor, Kuba and I, will get into a small car. About 30 minutes later we manage to bend the space-time and pack everything inside. We have a 1,300 km way to the South before us. Direction: The caves of Bosnia.

After 20 hours of a journey in the car, we enter the beautiful mountainous Bosnia. 

#Caves #Molnár János #Hungary


As a little girl, I dreamed of being a princess. The most genuine one, such as in fairy tales – with a beautiful crown and a palace covered with sparkling magical dust...

Finally, I grew up and these dreams faded away somewhere, long forgotten... Until I entered a place that brought all the childhood visions back – including sparkling passages and almost unreal spaces covered with crystals... In a magic place I was: The Molnar Janos Cave.