- Last Updated: Sunday, 22 June 2014 18:07
The Anhumas Abyss is a cavern located 23 km from the city of Bonito, Mato Grosso do Sul in an area know as the the Anhumas Valley, where you will also find the Blue Cavern, or Gruta do Lago Azul, as it is know in Portuguese. It is one of Bonito´s most exclusive attractions, and as close as you will ever get to experiencing Jules Verne´s mythical Journey to the Center of the Earth.
In the late 1970´s the Lago Azul Ranch suffered an immense forest fire. Without a well equipped system to fight forest fires, the ranchers themselves worked and toiled to control the burn. The fire cleared some inaccessible areas, and one of the ranch hands came back to report a hole in the ground with a huge body of water beneath it.
The first descent into what is now know as the Anhumas Abyss did not occur until 1984 when a speleological expedition came to map the diverse caverns of the Serra da Bodoquena Region (Bodequena Mountain Range).
Between 1989 and 1992 a number of speleological expeditions visited the region. During an expedition in 1992 marked the first dives in the Blue Lake Cave (Gruta do Lago Azul) http:// Here researchers discovered the bones of a Giant Ground Sloth and a Saber Tooth Tiger, prehistoric animals that lived in the Quaternary Period. It was only in 1996 that the Anhumas Expedition was able to dive to the bottom of the abyss and record its depth from the surface of the lake at eighty meters. Since then, the Abyss has been open to tourism.
In the first three years, the Anhumas Abyss was visited only by divers and experienced rope climbers. In 1999 the program was modified and professionalized to facilitate safe access to the cave for people without extensive experience in rappel and diving.