The Sabak Ha project was found with the idea
of exploring the bottom cave of the deepest
known Sinkhole in the Yucatan peninsula in
This project may as well result in the
achievement of multiple local and world cave
Sabak Ha in the local mayan language stands
for "Sabak" Ollin and "HA" water, due to the
layer of algae bloom found in the surface of the
large cenote expose to direct sunlight most of
Actually an open cenote is unsual in the
cenotes in this area, which usually require
abseiling down thru small openings to the water
so the caves been "indoors" stay cool and avoid
algae bloom resulting in crystal clear water
The Cenote is located 3.5-4hr away from the famous cenote area at the beach of Quintana Roo in the Riviera Maya between Playa del Carmen and Tulum.
The closest city is Merida and is an area famous for fantastic weather and unique cultural sources and folklore food. Caves are mostly single entrance Trimix deep dives.
The Sabak Ha Cave itself is a Sinkhole, so a vertical
cylindrical - semi conic and inclined Shape cave with a diameter of 60MTs /200ft in surface and estimated diameter at bottom of 300MTS / 1000ft. The debris falling in the cenote through the years piles up as usual in a debris mount, this one with multiple tips, shallowest point at 240ft
/ 75MTS, mount slope to main cenote "floor" at 380ft / 115MTS depth.
In the walls at 200ft / 60 mt depth there are three cave entrances opposite to each other, with a max explored penetration of +-300MTS on each side.
From it's bottom floor you enter in the cavern tall 150ft /50MTS and 330ft / 100mt penetration, at 360ft / 120MTS deep and there is the deep cave entrance that quickly slopes to the end of the exploration line at 490ft / 160MTS depth at
P750ft / 250MTS.
The deepest Cave in the Yucatan area so providing great opportunities for research and Exploration.
Temperatures readings show an increase in temp proportional with depth, with a
3°C increase between 0-110MTS depth.
New reliable depth sensors had provided more accurate depth readings, locating
tip of debri mount at 75MTS and main bottom at 115 MTS.
Thanks to depth capable scooters a semicircle surround above Hidrogen Sulfate
layer allow to discover a new tunnel entrance and team perceive the inclination of
the main sinkhole.
Here is a preliminary map
Brief Exploration History
1990's -The cave was found by local divers and found bottom less from 30MTS /100ft.
1997-Nick Toussaint was the first diver to reach debri mount top and "bottom" floor
1998-Andreas Matthes join exploration efforts and were the only ones to explore this
cave in the mid 90's, with experimental trimix softwares.
- Matt found and Explore the "shallow" caves and did the map below.
1999-Later separate attempts to Explore the bottom of the Cave beyond 400ft.
2000- In what seems a deep cave entrance with a huge slope a team lead by
Nick Toussaint and Mauricio Diamant,
result in confirming on going tunnel at a penetration of 750ft/220mts at a max
depth 490ft /150mts .
All this attempts were done swimming and in OC.
With dive times of in average 7.5-10hr
First RB CCR attempts swimming brought CO2 toxicity due to extreme depths
also as a result of some DCS cases and even a student fatality during a foreigner
Instructor "teaching" a Trimix Class.
Sabak Ha have exploration not being attractive for most explorers,
however there been several attempts to reach the end of the line thru the years,
As Limits of OC are quickly exceed and exploration requiring technology catch up
and deliver reliable rebreathers and depth endurance equipment,
we been working hard with White Arrow to develop suitable equipment for the
2012 New technology had been tested at extreme depths and decompression
enhanced by decompression rebreathers and habitats procedures.
WA NT2 APSCR Rebreather units have been proof extremely benefitial for this extreme deep cave dives reducing task loading, CO2 build up as well as simplicity of use.
-Explore Cave passages
-Survey of main Sinkhole
-Survey of Deep Tunnel
- Video documentation at depth
-Apply latest Technology and Procedures
-Chixculub Crater Theory support
Sabak Ha Cave Diving Records :
-Deepest Sinkhole known in Yucatan Peninsula
( current 490ft possibilities in excess of 500ft )
-Longest Cave dive in Mexico
( current 11.5hrs expected of 16-18hrs )
Next Project :
-November 9 - 12 / 2013
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