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Comarnic Cave - Caras Severin County

aPesteraC1.jpgCave Comarnic is situated in southwest Romania in Caras-Severin County under the administrated territory of Carasova, about 7 km from the village Iabalcea.

This cave is protected under the "Special Conservation Area of Comarnic" which lies in Semenic - Chele Carasului National Park.
Access
Airport: International Airport Timisoara (Aeroportul International Timisoara).
Railway Stations: Resita Station, Anina Station.
Highway: From Caransebes on European Highway E70, then on National Road DN58 until arriving in Resita.
Various roads, trails and eco-tourism trails through several local communities to Comarnic:*
- Blue-band (stripe) tourism trail: Resita; Valea Mare -Valea Sodol - Saua Cioaca Mare -Valea Romanovat - Poiana Sumbrac -Poiana Comarnic - Comarnic: total length of 13 km.
- Blue-band (Stripe) tourism trail: Lacul Gura Golumbului; Dealul Zabal - Dealul Trei Movile - La Clocitoare - Lacul Buhui - Saua Cuptoare - Anina - Marghitas - Mediureca - Comarnic: total length of 24 km.
- Red-cross tourism trail: Semenic (Baile Mici) to Vila Klaus. Then red-band (stripe) trail: Vila Klaus; Poiana Betii - Valea Comarnic -Comarnic: total length of 9 km.
- Blue-triangle tourism trail: Carasova; Poiana Prolaz - Platoul Iabalcei - Comarnic: total length of 9 km.
- Forestry Road (was marked DJ 582C in older maps): Resita (canton Minda); Capu Baci - Canton Padina Seaca - Comarnic: total length 14 km.
- Forestry Road (was marked DJ 582C in older maps): Anina (Orasul Nou); Saua Cuptoare - Canton Jervani - Canton Navesul Mare - Comarnic: total length of 18 km.
- Road DC 97 to forestry road (was marked DJ 582C in older maps): Iabalcea; Canton Padina Seaca - Comarnic: total length of 7 km.
- County road DJ 582D to road DC 96 to forestry road (not named or numbered): Valiug; Crivaia - Vila Klaus - Canton Bârzavita - Canton Navesu Mare - Comarnic: total length of 18 km.
*Note [ Trail: Start Location(s); Intervals or Main Points along the Trail: Trail Length.]
  
Description of the tourist trail into the Comarnic Cave

The tourist trail passes the Comarnic Cave, reaching a great part of the large and beauty passages and halls of the inactive level, then shortly follows the underground stream upwards and finally goes out where the Ponicova Creek enters the cave, through a succession of smaller but morphologically interesting galleries.
The downstream entrance of the cave is situated at 440 m altitude (a.s.l.). The beginning of the tourist trail is rather modest. Only the freezing air flow and the steam which goes out can offer an image of the underground world which we will visit.
The first sector of passages is rather stingy concerning the concretions but is easy to pass. Once we reach The Little Blocks Chamber, things change: some stalactites and stalagmites appear. Our trail passes over a huge blocks accumulation which covers the entire hall floor.
We continue through a narrow passage to reach a rich decorated hall where one of the most beautiful concretions of the cave develops: The Banana Cluster.
After climbing on new blocks we pass a hall to reach the famous Zebra's Chamber. This one is not decorated well, and is impressed by the linear black trails of the siliceous intercalations on the white limestone background.
The passages become more spacious and we soon enter in The Great Blocks Chamber. Not far from here, at the northern end of The Arched Gallery, there is a waterfall, which we can hear from The Great Chamber during the rainy periods.
Afterwards, we pass The Little Chamber with Clay, beside The Mushroom and The Hayrick, to arrive in a very richly decorated zone. With difficultly, we pass between the formations, which nearly close the passage, to reach a small hall. There, besides The Little Organ develops a lot of other formations with inspired names.
Continuing the trail we arrive at The Museum, so-called because of the great diversity and interesting formations we find here: stalagmites, stalactites, and columns. Very impressive is a column nearly suspended because of washing out of the alluvial beds which formed the ancient floor; a little bit farther is another solid column sectioned probably by the newest tectonic movements. This is a place where we can learn just by watching - a museum.
The trail continues through other spacious galleries, passing beside interesting formations with meaningful names.
On the floor appear some flowstones dams, smaller at the beginning and bigger afterwards, sometimes full of water. Passing beside The Big Organ, we reach The Chinese Walls, the biggest flowstone dams in the caves which form splendid pools of water during the rainy periods. To not maculate them we climb a little flowstone terrace, which can be sufficiently slippery.
Farther, we pass beside The Baldachin and under The Great Chimney, while walking through large galleries. We arrive in The Crystal Chamber, where yellow to red colored stalactites welcome us from the fractured ceiling. The color is given by the iron oxides caught into the crystalline structure of the formations.
After a new well decorated zone and over an accumulation of blocks we reach The Dome Chamber, so-called because of a giant flowstone dome which defends the hall entrance.
To go farther we must pass over some big stone blocks and then to descend to the underground river. Downstream, The Northern Gallery II develops and exits into a siphon named "Pluto's Fountain"; our way continues upstream crossing the stream several times and we then arrive at a crossing point. Even if the large gallery continues straight ahead, the tourist trail goes to the right, on a smaller gallery, which seems less facile and where we can feel the airflow coming from the upper entrance. We are now in The Bent Gallery and, sometimes slightly tilted, sometimes even on four legs we go further towards the light. We hear again the flowing underground river and immediately after crossing over it we see the day light; we pass under the impressive arch of the Ponicova entrance and finally we can again feel the joy of the warm sun.

A few words from the part of the team which contributed to this web page

The Comarnic Cave is one of the most beautiful caves in Banat. Even if there is more than a half of a century of tourism in this cave, it is still well preserved offering unexpected beauties which will remain for a long time engraved within the tourist's memory.

Every year, tourists with curious regards and inquisitive hands touch every formation they can reach. They scratch meaningless names on the walls with selfish pride, humiliating the cave's pure white beauties.

Every year, tourists with no sense of appreciation for nature preferred to leave this place with a "souvenir" deeply hidden in their pockets like common thieves instead of keeping in their hearts and souls this fantastic underground world revealed in the warm lights of the lamps.

But, there were also real men and women, who have fallen in love with this world placed in the heart of the mountains and left, keeping in their minds and hearts, living memories and the eternal wish to revisit these places.

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