Last year Paul Neilsen from Extreme Technical Diving was coordinator on a cave diving expedition to the Hinatuan Enchanted River Underwater Cave. Hinatuan is a town on the east coast of Mindanao in the Philippines. The Enchanted River may have got its name as a result of its rich, blue colour, but there are also local stories about it being inhabited by spirits. It is a spring that is fed by an underwater cave, and it was that which Paul and his team had gone to explore.
There is an access to a large chamber called Mayor’s Chamber. The plan was to accurately define this and to see what lay beyond it. To that end the expedition was successful, as they were able to find an easier, low-current entranceto Mayor’s Chamber, measure the chamber, and they found a passage that enabled them to get 90 metres further on into the system.
There is a great report on the expedition on Tech-Divers’s website, from where I borrowed the photograph of some of the gear involved for the 5 rebreather and 2 open circuit divers.
We know Paul from his time in Hong Kong as one of the leading technical diving instructors there. He now spends a lot more of his time in the Philippines as the main man behind Extreme Technical Diving, which is based in Puerto Galera and provides high quality technical diving and training.