Rediscovering the caves of Borino

We were in cave “Emina”.
After the descent we were faced with a new challenge, a crawl space of about 10 to 15 meters long. It was not very tight the entire way but there were some parts that were a bit of a squeeze and it made you earn your right of passage. But it was well rewarded, it eventually led us to one of the first large rooms! It was a huge space full of amazing sights, huge stalagmite, stalactites and formations created by years of water and minerals seeping through the rocks. Everywhere you looked there was something else, something more to draw your eye, almost hypnotising you. It went on and on and I can’t put into words the beauty of the sights before us, the shapes, the colours, the way the light from our headlamps brought to life these beautiful formations. The deeper we went into more rooms, narrow passes and challenging access points the more I felt astonished. The only negative for me was I was strongly advised not to bring my camera with me because there was a high risk of damage to it. I would have loved to have captured some of this wonderful cave to share with you but I will go back and I will be prepared better and I will share this wonderful cave! What I really liked and admired was how helpful everyone is, from young to old, everyone waits for the next person, lends a hand and ensures there is support where needed, Well done to all of you! After the final challenge of the accent out of the cave we walked back to the transport and headed back to the base camp, stopping for a short while to have a snack, I’ve never seen kids eat so much! 🙂 Back at camp there was more food, more Irish coffee and some good chat by the fire, we even had some traditional Bulgarian bagpipes played live! Day 3, cold and tired I saw the kids had the fire going.. A pot of coffee by the fire and I was ready to go. As it was our last day we had breakfast and packed away our tents and equipment, cleaned the area and made sure it was as we found it. Some of the members from Plovdiv were heading home so once everyone was ready we said our goodbyes and headed for Cave “Izvora” (“The spring of Kastrakli”). After a short drive we parked up and set off. The walk was along a paved road with a dry riverbed to the right and a mixture of forestry and sheer cliffs to the left, again the scenery was amazing. The road was blocked by large rockfall, passable by foot but no way for a vehicle to get by. From there on the road was covered in smaller rock fall, trees, leaves and branches, nature seemed to be taking it back and I couldn’t help but feel that in time it will once again be a walking track through the forest. We reached the point above the entrance to the cave. There was a steep drop down to the river bed, loose rocks covered in leaves and fallen branches. It was a tricky descent but not impossible, carefully and steadily we all made it down safely and after a short track back up the dry river bed we reached the entrance to the cave. Cave “Izvora” is an active water cave and at certain times water flows through it arriving into the river. We had no idea how far we would get inside or what we would find. The initial penetrations into the cave was straightforward, we soon came to a small room that was knee deep with water and no way to avoid it so one by one we passed through, then the sand began! Crawling up the mounds of sand and sliding down the other side, over and over again, but it was fun!

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Dwane Doran Written by: