Welcome to the Planetcaver blog, featuring stories from caves andunderground explorations around the world, from the point of view of a beginner caver.

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Dogs and kids, unfazed by a cave
Took some dogs and kids to a cave today, the Högberget cave in Kirkkonummi (near Peuramaa). Amazingly, none of them were particularly impressed or interested. Just another place, moving on to picnics and computer gaming or peeing on plants and light poles... which is ok and natural.
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July 2023, Högberget, Kirkkonummi, Finland
Caving (Basic, , Rock, Equipment, Morphology-Erosion)

Lonely little cave that no one notices
We were driving back from the technical museum of Slovenia - a massive museum, by the way, well worth visiting. Then there was a hole in a cliff we drove by. I had to stop. The cliff was next to a parking lot and a bus stop, in town of Notranje Gorice near Ljubljana. No one was paying any attention... too many nice caves in this country, I guess. I decided to call the cave the Forgotten Cave. And I did go in.
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July 2023, Forgotten Cave, Notranje Gorice, Slovenia
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Unknown)

The REAL Postojnska Jama
Riding the train to the inside of the Postojna cave in Slovenia. The ride takes eight minutes through wonderful cave scenery. And then the actual cave tour starts, lasting an hour and a half. Is this the best show cave in the world???
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July 2023, Postojna Cave, Postojna, Slovenia
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Karst, Showtour)

Petnička pećina
Petnička pećina is an old but abandoned show cave in the limestone rock hills near the town Ваљево (Valjevo), Serbia. While only 600 meters long, the cave feels massive due to its vertical differences and the high halls. Just look the two people in the above picture for scale. And the "eyes" in the ceiling! The cave is also Europe's largest cave tomb.
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June 2023, Petnička pećina, Ваљево, Serbia
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Karst)

Bärenhöhle: small cave by Central European standards, but a wonderful place to visit. And easy. A nice hike to a lush valley on a path and there you are. Water is flowing from the cave, dropping through the steps of rocks... moss has painted the cave green... there's a bit of climbing if you want to get to the end of the cave. Very nice!
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May 2023, Bärenhöhle, Rodalben, Germany; Bärenhöhle side cavelet 1, Rodalben, Germany; Bärenhöhle side cavelet 2, Rodalben, Germany
Caving (Basic, Rock-Limestone, Surveying); Caving (Basic, Rock-Limestone)

Rokokallio re-scan
The Finnish Caving Association had a nice meet-up in May ... we went to the Rokokallio, a high cliff in Vihti. High for Finland at least :-) Everybody joined... men, women, and dogs... and I worked with Ralf to systematically go through the cliff area and take positions and photos of all the caves. There's a total of 21 underground holes in the cliff and under boulders, though a few the holes are perhaps too small to be proper caves. We used Ralf's addition to the association's cave database user interface (Psgeo) to make the getting of the positions easy.
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May 2023, Ahdas luolanen, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Halkeamaluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Hiotun kiven luola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Jakoluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Kahden kolon luola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Kallionkololuola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Kivenalusluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Kivikasan luola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Käytäväluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Lippaluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Lohkareenalusluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Pikkuhalkeamaluolanen, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Pikkukiven alusluolanen, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Pikkulippaluolanen, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Päällysluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Pääluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Päänuotiopaikan luola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Syvä halkeamaluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Terävän kiven alusluola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Toinen nuotiopaikan luola, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland; Yläkolon luolanen, Rokokallio, Vihti, Finland
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Gneiss, Morphology-Crack, Morphology-Boulders); Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Gneiss, Morphology-Boulders); Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Gneiss, Morphology-Crack, Morphology-Erosion); Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Gneiss, Morphology-Crack)

Enoshima Caves
Only in Japan: They have a "candle lending service" at cave. And it is not like it is a dark, lightless place even without the candles - the Enoshima cave has lighting, but obviously the candles are a remarkable addition to the experience. On the other hand, since the candles are actual candles with actual fire, there is now a need to have a fire alarm system, if somebody accidentally sets the cave on fire...
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March 2023, Enoshima Island, Fujisawa, Japan; Enoshima Iwaya Cave, Fujisawa, Japan; Enoshima Iwaya Cave 2, Fujisawa, Japan; Enoshima Iwaya mini cavelet 1, Fujisawa, Japan; Enoshima Iwaya mini cavelet 2, Fujisawa, Japan; Shinto Shrine, Fujisawa, Japan
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Erosion, Showtour); Caving (None, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Erosion); Hiking; Travel; Urban-Exploration (Historic-Sites)

Beach without sunshine The Cave of the Seals
Imagine summer. Imagine a nice beach in a southern country, like Greece. Way too hot! How about a beach in a cave, so that you don't have to get sun cream out? This, and so much more you can get in the Cave of the Seals, north of Corinth and Loutraki and on the Perachora peninsula. An hour from Athens.
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(TGR version)

February 2023, Cave of the Seals, Perachora, Greece
Hiking; Caving (Basic, Rock, Morphology-Erosion); Swimming (None, Waterbody-Sea, Beach)

Cave Lakes World's Highest Cave Pools in Greece
A loved child has many names: Kastria Cave, Cave Lakes, Troupisio, and, of course, Σπήλαιο των Λιμνών. I'm in Peloponnese, few hours west of Athens. And in the village of Kastria, in the municipal region of Klitoria.
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(TGR version)

February 2023, Cave Lakes, Klitoria, Greece
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Karst, Showtour)

3D-printing 3D-scans of caves
Can we copy a cave, by scanning it with an iPhone lidar, then printing a model of the cave using a 3D printer? The short answers is yes, but there's a lot of complexities, and it is not as easy as one might initially think.
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(TGR version)

February 2023, Lukupuro, Espoo, Finland
Caving (None, Surveying, Research)

I don't know what this is, but it looks somehow familiar...
Greetings from your sewer inspectors! This adventure in Ancient Corinth, Greece, started in a very promising way: why not visit a cave whose name is Σπηλιά «αιδοίο» της Αφροδίτης, or, Aphrodite's you-know-what? And I have to say, it does look very familiar, in fact it looks exactly like the Finnish Högberget cave. See below:
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(TGR version)

February 2023, Σπηλιά «αιδοίο» της Αφροδίτης, Archea Corinthos, Greece
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Unknown, Surveying)

Wiesliczka Salt Mines
Wiesliczka is a suburb of Krakow. Under it is a massive salt mine, extending to a depth of approximately over 300 meters, with the total length of labyrinth passages spanning over 287 kilometers. The use of the site dates back to the 13th century, where the locals would harvest salt from brine (salt concentrate) wells dug on the wetlands. Later in the same century the wells started to be extended as deeper mine shafts and tunnels. Wiesliczka is not just a mine, it is a massive underground world and site of art and history. It is also a well-deserved UNESCO World Heritage Site.
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January 2023, Wieliczka Kopalnia Soli, Wieliczka, Poland
Urban-Exploration (Mines); Caving (Man-Made, Basic, Rock-Other, Showtour)

Cave inside the Tatra Mountains Belianska Jaskyňa
Wow, another cave country! Slovakia is I think my 28th country where I've been underground. Belianska Jaskyňa is the largest cave open to the public in the Tatra Mountain region in Slovakia. At the length of 3681 meters it is quite big. And, remarkably the tour actually is quite long, rising over a hundred meters in vertical as well inside the cave. And almost two kilometers long! One of the best walking cave tours I've been on.
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January 2023, Belianska jaskyňa, Vysoké Tatry-Tatranská Kotlina, Slovakia
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Limestone, Morphology-Karst, Showtour)

Pećina Beli Kop
Pećina Beli Kop is a small cave in Sremski Karlovci, in mid-western Serbia, northwest of Belgrade. The coordinates are N 45.13654 E 19.85772. The cave sits under a sandstone cliff that appears to have eroded, forming the cave. The cave floor is actually a large sandpit itself, and difficult to walk up and down.
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December 2022, Pećina Beli Kop, Sremski Karlovci, Serbia
Caving (Basic, Rock, Rock-Sandstone, Morphology-Erosion, Surveying)

Caving images generated by DALL-E
Wow. I've seen DALL-E's pictures from other topics elsewhere previously, but now I tried it myself for caving. And since we just had the pre-Xmas party of our association in the cave, I gave the AI the task of imagining what it would look like. True to its style, the generated images are mixture of amazing with some very disturbing undertones.
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(TGR version)

November 2022, House Arkko, Kauniainen, Finland
Caving (Media)

Caver's club Xmas in a cave
The Finnish caving association, Luolaseura, has a tradition to hold pre-Xmas parties. This time we started it in a warm place ... in the Grottberget cave in Siuntio. And it was surprisingly warm, I guess because the cave entrance is lower than the cave itself. And with a dozen cavers in this small cave, it also heated up quickly. I really liked the old style oil lamps. And the cave dog!
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November 2022, Grottbergetin luola, Siuntio, Finland
Caving (Basic, Rock, Social, Rock-Granite, Morphology-Crystallization)

This is the 2th set of articles. The previous set was set 1. The next sets are set 3, set 4, set 5, set 6, set 7, set 8, set 9, set 10, set 11, set 12, set 13, set 14, set 15, set 16, set 17, set 18, set 19, and set 20.

The Planetcaver articles appeared originally in the Blogspot Planetskier series, at TGR posts, or at the Relaa website. See also the articles about skiing, urban exploration, climbing, cycling, flying, swimming, and saunas.