Friday, 26 September 2014 00:00

Sof Omar Caves

Sof Omar Caves

Sof omar is one of the most spectacular and extensive underground caverns in the world .Formed by the web river as it changed its course and carved a new channel through limestone foothills in antiquity the sof omar system is an extraordinary natural phenomenon of breath taking beauty.The caves are a natural marvel of architecture with twenty meter high soaring pillars, flying buttresses, fluted archways and tall airy vaults. A balcony near the roof offers a spectacular view of the river rushing on its course below. The fantastic limestone caves of Sof Omar make a day's outing from Dinsho, Robe or Goba.

The road leaves Robe town, crossing the farming areas to the east, before descending into the lowlands. Here the vegetation is very different being dry lowland with wooded grasslands. The caves lie at 1,300 m above sea level. This is in marked contrast to what you will experience in the Bale Mountains at up to 4,000 m. Very different animals occur along the way as well, most noticeably the Greater and Lesser Kudu - both relatives of the Mountain Nyala, and the tiny Dik antelope. The caves themselves carry the whole flow of the Web River that rises in the Bale Mountains, underground through wonderfully carved caverns for a distance of one and a half kilometers. There are over fifteen kilometers of associated passages, which require skill, time and special equipment for a full exploration. However, a friendly local guide will show you enough to take your breath away and make the trip worthwhile,

The large central hall of Sof Omar, the ‘chamber of columns so named after the colossal limestone pillars that are its dominant feature is one of the highlights of the cave systems.in another part of the network there is a small gap in the rocks through which the river passes, about two and half meters wide, where a bridge can be made with driftwood to go across.

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