in a peculiar game of oppositions, mountain climbers are always challenging the
mountains to reach their top and approach the sun, whereas speleologists
always look for darkness and try to reach the subsoil to reveal its magic.
Spleologists are driven by their love for nature, and descend into the
deep cavities created by the millenary flowing of water. There, they find
different and mysterious shapes, and their breath seems to amplify,
surrounded as it is by absolute silence.
cannot be simply defined as a sport, the predecessors of today’s
speleologists discovered the first entrance to the spectacular Frasassi
Caves in 1948. Speleologists are driven by curiosity and the pleasure
of the contact with nature, and with a unique environment. They always try
to discover new areas which are beneath our feet, with an approach that
may be considered scientific.
territory of the Marches is mostly characterized by a calcareous
geomorphology, and thus provides speleologists with numerous opportunities
to enter caves and steep ravines, each of which has a particular
fascination and charming details.
richest areas in terms of natural cavities, some of which are very
difficult to detect, are in the vast mountain system of the Pesaro
province (Nerone Mount, Mounts Catria and Cucco) and on the Sibillini
Mounts, while close to the Furlo Gorge (which seems jealous of
its subterranean and still concealed treasure) a training ground was
created. There, speleologists can learn techniques that only apparently
resemble those used by climbers.
is impossible to become an expert speleologist overnight, this is why many
clubs organize the courses needed to tackle the perils concealed in dark
caves. Lessons range from geology notions to exploration techniques, from
subsoil biology to topographic surveying, from Karst phenomena to useful
indications aimed at ensuring safeguard in a very delicate environment.
Other topics include a training ground and first aid notions when in a
cave; those who wish to help other people in danger can further study
order to make this discipline more enjoyable, in summer speleologists like
engaging in canyoning. They use ropes and diving suits to go down
the many ravines scattered in the Marches’ territory and have fun in
exciting jumps. Another interesting variation of speleology is the
so-called urban speleology, which has been recently developed. It
uses speleology techniques to explore the ancient anthropic cavities (those
created by men); such as aqueducts, forgotten conduits and mines, ravines
full of charm and mystery. The Speleology Group of Urbino is
carrying out a topographic project to explore, survey and count the
numerous tunnels that develop in Urbino’s subsoil. This project has
already led to interesting discoveries, and to the discovery of epigraphs
sculpted in sandstone 500 years ago.
more discoveries shall be made, thanks to the curiosity and the work of
speleology enthusiasts, who are always ready to go down wet caves and
secret passages, to hear their hearts beat with excitement in the dark
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