Our journey to becoming a speleo club started long ago (2007). Founding and participating in a proper speleo club was initially only a dream of handful teenagers from the small village Tserovo, situated amid one of the most prospective karst areas in Bulgaria. With no outdoor organizations, nor an existing speleo club, we had a lot to do with little support. Finding equipment, learning and mastering alpine techniques, organising explorations, gathering information, participating and initiating courses, attracting new members and many other aspects of the speleology and the function of a speleo club, many of which we are still learning.
Our brief but sincere manifesto is in the below paragraph.
We are ‘Pod RB’ as we believe in the following:
- We are friends united by the common passion for exploring caves. A good person can easily become a good speleologist, the other way around might not work.
- It all started in Tserovo (our village) and it shall always return there. We organise and attend international expeditions, so we can be better prepared for Kolikna dupka (see ‘Our projects’ below)
- We always support each other and in tough meanders we help each other with the transport bags. We do everything for the club, including the payment of 5lv per month.
Our club consists of the following people, see here.
We have always been concentrated on exploring the area of Ponor planina, near Tserovo and more specifically Kolkina dupka but other areas in Bulgaria as well. Based on existing tradition with exploring Prokletije in Albania, we have been actively involved in the research there as well, culminating with a visit of Cilikokave (-505m) organized, led and executed by club members only.
Members of our team participated in explorations in:
- Croatia, North Velebit (Velebita -1026m and Slovacka Jama – 1324m)
- Arabika, Abkhazia (Sarma -1830m)
- Germany, Dachtsain ( Schmelzwasser Höhle – WUG (What you got) – 1560м)
- Austria, Tennengebirge
- Albania, Prokletije (Maja Arapit + 387м; Ru – 546m, Cilikokave – 505m)
- Bulgaria – Pirin (- 401м)
Many of our team members are keen mountaineers, experienced in winter conditions and some are great enthusiasts in ski touring.
Currently we are concentrating our energy and effort in 3 main areas:
1. Kolkina dupka, Ponor, Bulgaria
Explorations there started in 2009 (depth – 67m, length 46m) with three main breakthroughs, leading to the following results:
I (2009, depth – 112m, length 71m )
II (2013, depth – 267m, length 1 227m)
III (2016, depth – 543m, length 15 555m)*
More detailed exploration summary is available here
Currently there are two equipped bivouacs, getting to the II bivouac takes between 8 and 12 hours. Safety advice with accent on prevention specifically developed for Kolkina can be found here. 3D map can be found here.
*based on latest explorations, updated 09 APR 2020
2. Crnopac, South Velebit, Croatia
Since 2015 we have been having a minimum one per year visit to Crnopac. Concentrated mainly on the deepest and furthest parts of Kita Gacesina*. The strong interest in this part is facilitated by a club member living in Croatia, providing us with the logistical support and the assistance from the Croatian speleologists.
For more details about Pod Rb’s exploration in Crnopac see here
*Currently Cave System Crnopac (Kita Gacesina – Drazenova Puhaljka – Oaza) depth – 797m, length – 43 242m
3. Going further
Our previous experience, gained mainly in Albania, gave us enough expertise to be able to conduct the continuous and quite intense explorations in Kolkina dupka. For the last 10 years, the tough nature of Kolkina equipped the team with the needed skill and stamina to get into other speleo projects. On the other hand, Crnopac, in Croatia, proved to be a nice annual trip for the club members, so they can have physical and mental break from Kolkina.
Now we are ready to widen our horizons and contribute to the exploration of other regions and caves, while traveling, developing new relations and having fun as deeper and further underground as possible.
Should you need anything from our end do not hesitate to reach us here.