The world’s deepest cave, a dangerous caving incident

On the border of Russia and Georgia, there is a mountain range called the Caucasus, which is the dividing line between Asia and Europe, and is also home to the highest peak in Europe, Elbrus (5642 meters above sea level). A sub- mountain of gagara, the mountains here are made of brittle limestone, which, due to the constant scouring of rain, forms the largest cave in the world, Veryovkina.

The known depth of the cave reaches 2212 meters, and its entrance is just on the mountainside of Gagara Mountain, 2286 meters above sea level. The entrance of this cave looks like a fault in a valley. At first, no one thought that it was hidden inside. Bottomless darkness.

The entrance was first discovered by the Soviet Union in 1968. At that time, the Soviet Union only detected a depth of 115 meters, thinking it was a dead hole, so they randomly gave him a code called S115, and then S115 was quickly forgotten by people..

In 1983, a member of the Russian Spelunking Club, alexander varevkin, discovered a new branch inside the cave, a discovery that took the excavation to a depth of 440 meters.

But during a cave exploration that year, Valevkin died in distress, and S115 has been named after Valevkin since then.

During the 15 years from 2000 to 2015, Valevkin’s exploration depth remained at more than 400 meters until August 2015, when a vertical shaft was discovered in the cave, after which the depth of the cave was quickly excavated.

In 2016, the excavation depth exceeded 1,000 meters, and in 2017, it exceeded 2,150 meters. At the bottom of the cave, they discovered a huge and complex underground labyrinth system, and dozens of crystal clear underground rivers.

In March 2018, the Russian Parevo expedition team reached 2,212 meters underground, so Valevkin surpassed the world’s deepest cave at that time, the Kurubyala Cave (2197 meters).

Half a year after the land reclamation was completed, British explorer Robbie Shone took an all-round photography of the cave, allowing the outside world to see the real situation inside.

In the first 440 meters of the cave, which is the route excavated in the 1980s, there are a lot of terrain and terrain that needs to be climbed to pass. People who are too fat are eliminated in this link.

From 440 meters to 600 meters, it is a deep pit with a length of 155 meters, which needs to be reached by abseiling.

At 600 meters is the first camp, and it is also the only permanent camp in the cave. There are 5 camping spots below, but due to the weather, they are often washed away by floods. It takes 4 days to reach the bottom at the earliest. In addition, the return is 8 days, and the danger is much more difficult than climbing Mount Everest.

At a depth of 600 meters, mobile phones can no longer receive any signals, and can only communicate with the outside world through traditional telephone lines. In the past few decades, the expedition team has laid thousands of telephone lines in the cave, except for In addition to reporting safety outside through a fixed phone, you can also use it to understand the weather conditions outside. If there is a heavy rain, a huge waterfall will form in the cave, which is very dangerous.

From 600 to 2100 meters, it is a 1,500-meter-long, almost vertical drop channel. The channel is penetrated by branch rainwater and becomes cold and wet. After this stage, professional waterproof clothing and good cold protection equipment are required.

After three days of crossing, you will come to the depths of the underground palace at 2,100 meters underground. This is already an area that professional researchers dare to reach. Because of the complex terrain and dozens of underground rivers, explorers are here. You can get lost at any time.

And the temperature at the bottom of the cave is kept at about 5 degrees all year round. It is not only dark, gloomy, but also cold. As long as it rains outside, the lower layer will be filled with rainwater, and being trapped is basically a dead end. It is such a dangerous cave, but in 2020, a warrior came to challenge it alone.

His name is Sergey Kozeyev, a Russian, 37 years old. He has been married to his wife for ten years and has two children, but Sergey and his wife have not gotten along well for many years, and they are often alone.

In November 2020, Sergei did not leave any information because of a conflict with his wife, and went to the Valevkin cave alone to challenge. Maybe he just wanted to find a quiet place where no one was there, so he did not tell anyone where he was going. .

Before entering the cave, Sergey bought food that could last for more than 10 days at a local store, and entered the cave rashly with his usual mountaineering equipment. I have to say that Sergey is indeed very courageous, because in addition to the darkness in such a hole, there are many unknown creatures living in the depths of the darkness.

Sergey stayed there for one night as he descended down the narrow tunnel to the 440-meter vertical entrance.

After that, he passed the rope and descended to the first camp of 600 meters, but he didn’t know what happened. He lived in the first camp for about a week without any contact with the outside world, and the cave was rarely crowded . Come to patronize, so no one found his existence at all.

After living in the first camp for a week, he still had no intention of returning, but continued to descend to the second camp at 1,000 meters. At this depth, due to the sharp drop in height and the perennial infiltration of rain, the air was cold and humid. A professional set of waterproof and cold protection clothing is crucial here.

However, Sergey was only wearing ordinary cotton clothing at that time, which could not resist the cold when infiltrating. When he realized the danger, it was too late. Because of the lack of upward leverage equipment, Sergey could not return to the ground. He died in a cave 1000 meters away.

For a long time later, Sergey’s family did not hear from him. They only reported missing persons to the Russian police, but they didn’t even know where he went.

On August 4, 2021, a group of explorers came to the Valev Golden Cave to explore and found a rope at the entrance. At first they thought that someone was going to explore, and they were happy for a while. When the expedition arrived at Camp 1, they found a pair of moldy sneakers and a large amount of leftover food packaging.

When they came to the second camp along the cave, they found a long-decomposed body. At that time, Sergey had been dead for more than 9 months. For related information, two mobile phones were found in his bag, as well as a detailed wiring drawing of the plan. It does not look like he committed suicide in the cave, but he underestimated the risks here.

Later, the police found Sergey’s family through his mobile phone, and planned to remove the body from the cave for burial by relatives. However, there are either vertical passages or narrow roads in Valevkin Cave. How to transport the body out is a matter of choice. difficult.

On August 11, 2021, a rescue team of 27 people organized by the Russian Mountaineering Association came to the entrance of the cave. Their task was to take out the remains in the cave. The climbing team went down to the cave after two days, but found that they could not pass through. The stretcher sent the body out of the hole, and finally Sergey was cut into pieces and pulled out by the people on the ground with ropes. This work lasted for 5 days, and it was not completed until August 16.

In the history of Valevkin’s excavation, it has never been open to the public, because the challenger needs to have strong physical and psychological qualities to climb the more than 2,000-meter-long rope, and it may never be developed as a scenic spot in the future.

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