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Jun 01, 2008

Cenotes Near Mérida


This is why people should buy underwater cameras.  Above, Tom shot by his friend Jeff or maybe the other way around.  We were swimming at one of the cenotes near Mérida*.  Note the stalactites below the water.**

The Yucatan peninsula has several thousand cenotes -- freshwater sinkholes that are just awesome for swimming.  So perfect, it's almost a moral obligation to do it skinny style.

The one pictured here is ~80 ft. across and ~30 ft. deep, with the water surface ~30 ft. below ground level. Here's a shot of Tom (or maybe Jeff) leaping in:



*We were on a tour run by Sr. Raul Espejo, an excellent tour guide and even more excellent gentleman.  Raul's tour company works closely with the folks at Hostel Nómadas (which is run by a different Raul, just so you don't get confused.) 

**Tom (or maybe Jeff) has a nice mnemonic for remembering the orientation of stalactites and stalagmites. The stalacTites hang down from the ceiling, like a capital "T".  The stalagMites grow up from the ground, the like the humps of an "M".  This is much better than the mnemonic I'd been using since I was little: stalaCtites have a "C" as in "Ceiling".

12:33 AM in Mexico, Traveling | Permalink


From Mrs. Anderle in sixth grade: stalactites are stuck tight (to the ceiling.)

Posted by: glenn | Jun 1, 2008 12:48:37 AM

The cenotes were one of the highlights of my time in the yucatan. The closest we get around here is the quarry. The light in a cenote is just so gorgeous. The underwater picture does it justice. I need to get back soon.

Posted by: Stew | Jun 1, 2008 10:11:48 AM

The stalactites are hanging on tight to the ceiling. The 'mites are the other ones. :)

Awesome pics. On our honeymoon, we kept going in to get another disposable underwater camera. And another. (But the photos were nothing like this!)

Posted by: Valerie | Jun 2, 2008 10:29:00 PM

Awesome photo. Not often I log onto someone's page and say WOW at first sight.

Posted by: cd | Jun 8, 2008 11:56:10 AM

Beautiful photos, Phil. I hope you're well.

Posted by: Doc | Jun 16, 2008 10:30:50 PM

"Sunnis come up from the cave floor, and Shiites hang down . . ." -Jon Stewart.

These are incredible pictures and experiences. I gotta get off my ass and do something.

Posted by: Elrond Hubbard | Jun 25, 2008 8:36:47 AM