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Subject: Info longest caves Middle East / Arabian Peninsula
From: "Peter De Geest"
Date: Sat, August 23, 2008 2:49 am

Hello John & Susy,

I'm Peter De Geest, a caver & geologist, worked mostly on
Soqotra Island Yemen (currently living and working in the
UAE with my wife).
Anyway, we recently pushed our limits in Giniba cave on
Soqotra up to a length of 13.525m, with most probably
another 2.156m to go after our second sump towards the
resurgence. As I'm making a powerpoint presentation for a
lecture at the annual meeting of the Friends of Soqotra in
the Czech Republic, I'm collecting all possible data
concerning the longest caves of the Middle East / (or) the
Arabian Peninsula. I wondered if you could help me out
Michael Laumanss told me that up to his knowledge, these
are the actual longest:

Ghar Katalehkhor (longest cave of Iran) at 12,860 m (S.
Arshadi & M. Laumanns (2004): Speleological Project Ghar
Katalehkhor (Zanjan / Iran). - 56 pp, cave survey (atlas
sheets) and colour photo tables; Berlin)

Ghar Alisadr (2nd longest cave of Iran) at 11,440 m M.
Laumanns, S. Brooks, I. Dorsten, G. Kaufmann, M.
Lopez-Correa & B. Köppen (2001): Speleological Project
Ghar Alisadr (Hamadan/Iran). - 43 pp, many b&w-photos and
surveys, annexes; Berlin.

Although I'm absolute not kicking on the longest / deepest
/ biggest, but more in the most interesting and
scientifically important, I try to make this the occasion
to make a top whatever for Arabia / the Middle East (which
definition has to be choosen)...

More info to be found on the next webpages:


Thanks already and let me know if I can help from the UAE
in any way, AS I HATE SHOPPING MALLS and summer is going
to end soon.

Best regards,

Peter & Heidi


Hello Peter!
Your message is quite a surprise! I am delighted to discover what you are doing on Socotra and would like to put links to your projects on the Saudicaves website.

The Middle East is a big piece of territory, stretching from Libya to Afghanistan. The Lebanese have some caves that might enter the competition.

I would suggest using the Arabian Peninsula as a category. In this case, your Soqotra cave, if volcanic, would would take first place among the longest lava tubes of the Arabian Peninsula. At present Umm Jirsan System is the longest we or the people working in Jordan have measured: 1.5 kms long. Check it out at www.saudicaves.com . I would definitely consider this cave high on a list of "interesting" caves in the region.

Another very interesting cave is Ghar Al Hibashi (see the report at http://www.saudicaves.com/spspubs/index.html) which is listed among the ten most important (mineralogically) lava caves in the world.

Well, I am going to go look at your websites now. By the way, I expect to be back in Saudi Arabia (presently I am living in Mexico) in October, for a two year stay. So I hope we might be able to get together. Have always wanted to visit Soqotra!

John Pint