World's largest underwater cave found in Mexico after years of searching
January 21, 2018
(MEXICO) -- Persistence pays off. After searching for years, a team of experts from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) has discovered a crucial link between two systems of ancient flooded caverns in Mexico that together form what is now being called the world’s largest underwater cavern as well as the most important submerged archaeological site on the planet.
CLICK TO ENLARGE. A small part of the huge underwater cave found off the coast of Mexico. Photo: Youtue/Al Jazeera video.
According to a report by Mexico Daily News the large exploration team made the discovery during work on the Great Mayan Aquifer (GAM) project, near the Mexican beach town of Tulum.
It is a project where archaeologists, biologists, underwater photographers and cave divers are exploring, documenting and also mapping an extensive subterranean network of water deposits on the Yucatán Peninsula.
Items from the report:
.......GAM project director Guillermo de Anda told a major national newspaper in Mexico, Mileneo that the discovery of the connection between the 863,000 feet long Sac Actun system and the 275,000 feet Dos Ojos system in Tulum, Quintana Roo, was made on January 10th following 10 months of intense work.
.......The interconnected underwater system forms a 216-mile-long cave with an average depth of 65 feet although in some sections it is as shallow as 6.5 feet and in others as deep as 328 feet.
.......in the huge cavern the team has already found more than 100 major archaeological pieces including the remains of extinct fauna, the bones of early humans, Mayan archaeology, ceramics and Mayan graves.
.......within the underwater cavern system there are also dry and partially dry caves where the team has found ancient human modifications such as walls, staircases, cave paintings and other signs of ancient human presence.
....... German explorer Robert Schmittner, who leads the diving team, said the discovery of the link between the two cavern systems is the result of 14 years of hard exploration and his team’s dedication. He said finding the link took a "Titanic effort."