Hirlatzhöhle, Austria(113km, -1560m) – two expeditions in January and February

Our Austrian friend Paul invited us to join for e trip in help of a diving expeditions in Hirlatz. This is the third longest and second deepest cave in Austria (113km and -1560m). The ave is located in the Dachstein massif with several entrances. The highest entrance is behind a siphon in a spectacular big room called “Sahara”. Our club participated in the exploration of the top entrance in 2018 so the cave and the region weren’t unknown for us and we wanted to see it from the other side.

In January it was only two Bulgarians – me (Efi) and George(Getsata). We teamed with 4 croatians, 3 austrians and one irish girl. The two Austrian divers – Vety and Stefan were aiming to try a siphon located about 8 hours from the entrance – one of the last unexplored passages in the west region. The water levels were quite high for the season but this turned out to be in help for one of the siphons because the divers managed to pass easily long way of walking parts and found interesting continuations. It was so interesting that they decided to come back again to this place in February.

Stefan and Vett preparing to dive in.

The huge water was problem for a small austrian team of two exploring further pats, so we met Axel and Andreas who joined our expedition.

For the expedition in February there are more volunteers so Axel invited us to try to explore the parts that he and Andreas couldn’t reach in January. This time we were four bulgarians – me, Getsata, Dancheto and Kalin. So we helped with the diving equipment and moved further to the last camp. The parts were really muddy and reaching them required a lot of crawling.

Cleaning dirty equipment in Sahara

We managed to resurvey and survey new parts – total of 137m. These parts are quite interesting, there is draft and several directions. We traversed and climbed in two directions and went down in one pit where a small river goes. The mud makes the exploration in this parts quite unattractive and not many people go there.The diving team didn’t have big luck this time because they had problem with low level of water which reaquired the two divers to walk/climb with the heavy gear.

It was fun and we could help our austrina friends with their projects.

Participants: Efi, Getsata, Dancheto, Kalin.

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