Ice Cave in the Mutnovsky Volcano
Russia’s secret Ice Cave
I’m at a place that feels like a passageway to the world of fairytales! I am at the Ice Cave in the Mutnovsky Volcano in Russia. This place is like a dream, what with multicolored lights glowing from a translucent ceiling, rocks through which a stream is slipping and a bright light in the distance!
3 Amazing Mutnovsky Volcano Ice Cave Facts
- And none of this is man-made! The cave itself was carved from the glacier by an underground hot water spring flowing beneath the glacier.
- The walls are thus made up of highly compacted snow, which is what gives it its unique appearance.
- The multicolored lights are a result of the sunlight being filtered through the glaciers on the ceiling. That’s what gives the cave walls a stained glass look. Amazing isn’t it?
Who discovered Mutnovsky Volcano Ice Cave and how?
The cave is half a mile long and was discovered accidentally by a Ms. Balentsova and her local guide Denis Budkov, during an expedition in 2012 near the Kamchatka Peninsula. The Kamchatka Peninsula, in the far east of Russia, is known to be a region of exceptional natural beauty with its large symmetrical volcanoes, lakes, wild rivers and a spectacular coastline. I hear that up until 1990, the area was off limits to foreigners.
The locals here tell me that the photographer who discovered it was really lucky. Most of the time, the area is covered with snow, and the place where the cave was found is off the usual track. Thanks to the mix of an unusually hot summer, and the observant photographer and her guide, who noticed the spring underneath the glacier and followed it to the cave, we can now see the magical caves, whenever the snow melts enough to allow passage into the cave. Which, they tell me, is not very often – probably the reason why everything around here looks to be in pristine condition! Boy do I feel lucky to have seen this magical place!