Holly Mt.- Athos’2017 – spring edition

Holly Mt.- Athos’2017 – spring edition

On March 26, 2017 to Holly Mt.- Athos – Greece went Bulgarian cave expedition. This is the seventh consecutive expedition within the international program for the study of the caves of Mount Athos initiated by us. For the third time the expedition was organized by the Bulgarian Caving Society (BCS). It was attended by A. Zhalov – BCS, SC “Helicit” – Sofia – team leader, A.Kirov – BCS, SC “Studenetz” Pleven, Bulgarian National Association of Underwater Activities K.Stoichkov – SC “Helicit” Sofia, T.TODOROV – BCS, SC “Darkness” – Etropole and our Greek colleague K. Bakolitsas of cave club “Celas” Athens member of Greek Federation of Speleology. Fieldwork was carried out within 5 working days. Land surveying was performed with Leica total station and South RTK GNSS GPS, which was receiving real time corrections from the Greek RTK network. On the field was discovered and remeasured permanent points used in previous geodetic measurements. Localization was made to match existing CAD models. New permanent points were made in convenient locations for the remote sites. All measurements are done in Greek coordinate system HEPOS GRRS87-TM and are usable for cadastral purposes. Our goal was to make CAD model that contains current measurements, underground mapping and existing CAD models. Geodesic work was done by Aleksandar Kirov with modest assistance to other Bulgarian participants. During the second half of expedition were discovered and explored 13 new cavities , most of them were artificial galleries – qatans , drainage channels and channels for dirty waters which belongs to the underground infrastructure of the Bulgarian monastery St.George Zograf. According to preliminary data, the total length of the mapped objects is 338 m. The largest of them is the main sewers monastery channel whose length turned out to be around 150 meters and have displacement at about +30 m. Next along is the gallery in the courtyard of the monastery ( 80 m). Some of the galleries are covered with beautiful flowstone forms – mainly stalactites and cascades of sinter plates. The most beautiful, however, was the water catchment in peach garden above the monastery (31 meters). Meanwhile was collected information about 15 new sites, one of them (the newly discovered sea caves) was mapped. In some of the sites was collected and cave fauna. From today we already know that one of collected samples is trilobite (Nipfargus sp.) The expedition would have been unthinkable without the blessing and help of monastic brotherhood in the Bulgarian monastery so we express to them our sincere gratitude. After this expedition, the total number of the survey of natural and artificial cavities increased to 189. Next expedition to Mount Athos will be in the period September-October this year. Reported by A.Zhalov, Al. Kirov. Photos: A. Zhalov K. Bakolitsas, A.Kirov, K.Stoichkov

Holly Mt – Athos ’2017 – spring edition

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