Challenge of cutting through 12 kilometer of cave under the island of Okinagara (Part 2)

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Challenge of cutting through 12 kilometer of cave under the island of Okinagara (Part 2)

On the second day, follow the path of the water in the cave, watch out for the rocks and tread carefully. As you make your way through a curved narrow channel, you will notice the water level increasing. At one point, you will have to keep your head low in the water in order not to damage the stalactite hanging low from the ceiling. As you slowly follow the flow of the water, watch out for flow stones or mineral deposits left by the water flowing through the cave. Later, you will also come across a rim stone pool, resembling a huge open-air bath.

After this comes the toughest portion of this entire expedition. You will have to cross a portion of the cave - a path spanning 25m - underwater. This requires you to dive into a tunnel under the water to go across. Those who do not have a scuba diving licence will have to skin dive but will be able to use a diving regulator if they can’t hold their breath for that long. The channel is curved and narrow which makes the passage even more difficult. After successfully going through this challenging path under the water, make your way up to the ground and call it a day.

On the third and final day of this unique adventure, explore a big cave which has no stalactite. You will notice cracks in the ceiling, due to parts of the ceiling calling off as a result of earthquakes or a weakened ground. Later, you will come across beautiful white cave pearls, which have the same component as stalagmite and limestone. Their diameter ranges from less than 1cm to 15cm. As you go deeper into the cave, the path gets narrower. After following the passage of the water, you will notice a clear spring. Don’t be too surprised if you see some eels, as the cave serves as a perfect home for eels which are active at night.

Continue making your way downstream. You will notice lots of tree roots as you get closer to the exit. Walk further down the river in the cave, which will eventually lead you to the exit and the sea. Towards the exit, you will see a stalactite landmark nicknamed “Tower of Pisa”. Walk through a sideway, where you will come across numerous stalactites, and make your way further down the river. The path gradually gets brighter and you will finally reach the exit of the cave.

However, the final goal is to reach the sea so you’ll have to walk for about four kilometers more. Let the water lead you to the sea. With the help of a rope, you will have to climb down a waterfall before you will reach Ujiji-hama, which is in front of the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy the magnificent view of the clear blue sea and soak in the sea breeze as you celebrate the end of this three-day trip of crossing caves under Okinoerabujima.

THIS WEEK'S TIPS:

  • Those without a scuba diving licence can skin dive, with the help of a diving regulator

  • You will notice tree roots and the path getting brighter the closer you are to the cave’s exit

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