From: Julián Puga

Date: Sept 28, 2006

Subject: About The Rub´Al Khali underground river


I would like to ask you a question about the Rub' Al Khali desert:


In an adventure novel of 1933, a group of adventurers travel through an underground river, located under the Rub' Al Khali desert. Is there actually a river under that desert? On the other hand, in the same novel, it is mentioned that in that desert  there are salt marchers, Is this also truth?


 Thanks for your help


 Julián Puga





Hello Julián!

A couple of years ago I was asking the very same question. I had heard rumors that such a river might exist and I was looking into possible ways one might get into it. There is definitely a limestone bed under the dunes, so at the very least there might be a big aquifer under this desert. I didn't get any conclusive answers about this, so I will forward your question to several geologists who may want to comment. Not long ago there was a big expedition through the Rub, so perhaps there is now more info on the subject.


As for salt marshes, this also seems possible especially if you were in the area after a heavy rain. Here is a photo taken in the Rub Al Khali by Dr. Albert Matter... and you can find a photo of a saline pool in Dr. John Roobol's report at .


I found your name on the Internet related to Doc Savage novels. Wonder if the 1933 novel you refer to is in that series. Unfortunately, I have only come across a few of those novels over the years, but enjoyed what I found. As a teenager I was crazy about Sax Rohmer's Fu Manchu books and even wrote a story of my own for the school newspaper, imitating Rohmer's style.


¿Vives en Chile?  Estamos en México.


John y Susy Pint