Who We Are
Ox Bel Ha Cave Exporation Team

Bernie | Fred | Christophe | Sam | Bil | Danny | Beto | Sabine | Samantha


Grupo de Exploracion Ox Bel Ha

The Grupo de Exploracion Ox Bel Ha (GEO) was formed in May 1999. We are an international group of cave diving explorers who live and work full time in Quintana Roo, (where Cancun is) Mexico. All of us came here to partake in the exploration of what is truly one of the last unexplored regions of this planet. So far it has not let us down. We are committed to the preservation, conservation and the raising of public awareness of these unique and beautiful cave systems. This web site gives us the opportunity to share with you who we are and what we are finding. It is our hope to continually update this page to bring the latest discoveries that we have made. All of our efforts are made possible through personal and private funding. We will soon have information on how you can help us to continue with our exploration.

We hope that you find this web site interesting, stimulating and that you are able to learn something from it. Please contact us at info@mexicocavediving.com should you have any questions.

This is the OFFICIAL SITE of our group and projects, any other articles or newsletters that you may read do not necessarily represent our opinions or ideas.


Antar Photo

Antar

 

Antar is literally the backbone of our operation. He lives with us in the jungle and transports food, water and gas to us at our base camp. Without his help we would all have sore backs. When he isn't with us he is kicking back on Don Selliano's ranch near Coba.


 

Bernie Birnbach

Bernie Birnbach

 

Originally from Moers, Germany, Bernie has worked all over the world as a diving instructor. He has lived in the area for 3 years now and has been cave diving most of that time. Bernie represents the following training organizations, PADI, SSI, TDI, and the NACD. Bernie has been involved in the exploration and survey of the following systems, Aktun Koh, Minotauro, Taj Mahal, Xpu Ha, Aktun Chen, Chac-Hal-Al and Valet.


Fred Devos

Fred Devos

 

Originally from Stratford, Canada, Fred has lived in the area for 3 years and has lived and worked and dived all over the world. Active in the area's cave exploration for the last few years Fred has been involved in the exploration of the following systems, AktunKoh, Dos Pies, Minotauro, Xpu Ha, El Punto and Valet. Fred was part of the original jungle team that explored Cenote Esmeralda in May of last year, establishing much of the downstream area. An avid free-diver, you are likely to see him prowling the waters off Puerto Aventuras in search of something to eat.


Christophe Le Maillot

Christophe Le Maillot

 

A native of France, Christophe has been a diving professional for 8 years and has worked and traveled all over the world. He has lived in the area for 3 years and has been active in exploring the following systems in the area... Christophe has the following diving credentials.


Sam Meacham

Sam Meacham

 

Originally from Austin, Texas, Sam has lived in the area for the last 6 years. Sam has been involved in area cave exploration for the last 4 years and has explored in the following systems, Temple of Doom, Cenote Aiin, Cenote Kalimba, Pac Chen and Xibalba. Sam is responsible for community relations, mapping, video documentation and logistics. Sam and Bil Phillips were responsible for setting up the exploration projects in Esmeralda and Ya’ax Kai. Sam and Bil established much of the upstream sections of Esmeralda.


Bil Phillips

Bil Phillips

 

Originally from British Colombia, Bil has been a diving professional for over 15 years. He lives and works 10 months of the year as a cave diving instructor in the Akumal area. Bil has been very involved in exploration efforts in the area and has explored in the following systems, Dos Ojos, Naval, Kalimba, Sacactun, and Taj Mahal. Bil is responsible for all diving operations, safety and equipment acquisition. Bil is also involved in fund raising for our project.


Daniel Riordan

Daniel Riordan

 

Daniel is a native of Mexico City and has lived and worked in this area for the last 10 years. Committed to exploration, he has been involved in the exploration of the following systems Sacactun, Nohoch Na Chich, Sacactun, Dos Ojos, Minotauro and Chikin Ha. Danny speaks basic Mayan and provides an important link to that community. Danny was part of the original team that explored from Esmeralda in May 1999 helping to establish the downstream reaches of Los Canales. Daniel is a Full Cave Diving Instructor for the NACD and thoroughly enjoys guiding cave divers throughout the areas unique cave systems..


Beto Seguenza

Beto Seguenza

 

The first thing any one of us hopes to see when returning from a dive is Beto's smiling face. He is the jack of all trades for our campsite and helps fill tanks, take care of Antar and makes sure we don't get lost in the jungle. A native of Chiapas and Tabasco in Southern Mexico he has lived in Quintana Roo for 10 years. During project Ya'ax Kai 1999 Beto did his PADI Discover Scuba Diving Course and took to the water like a fish.


Sabine Schnittger

Sabine Schnittger

 

A German national, Sabine has lived in Europe, UK, USA and Australia. She is an accredited economist and a great balance for the team. Having acquired her expertise as a cave diver while living in Melbourne, Sabine adapts readily to the exploration of the multi passage and distance demands in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Although new to exploration, she participates heavily in activities both above the water and below. An open water instructor, she has been cave diving in Australia for the last 6 years.


 

Photo Pending

 

Samantha Smith

Sam is originally from Toronto, Canada. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from McMaster University in 1997, where she specialized in microbial aquatic ecology. Since then she has become an Open Water Scuba Diving Instructor and Full Cave Diver. Sam set up a water quality laboratory for Centro Ecologico Akumal and has been involved in numerous research projects. The most extensive of these have included the following cave systems, Nohoch Na Chich, Carwash/Aktun Ha and Ya'ax Chen. Each of these projects was designed so that we may better understand these vital fresh water systems. Research of the underwater caves is essential due to to increasing socio-economic and development pressures along the coast of Quintana Roo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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© G.E.O. Grupo de Exploración Ox Bel Ha
Dedicated to the continued exploration of the world's largest underwater cave system.
Cave diving in cenotes and underground rivers in the Yucatan Peninsula,
Mayan Riviera, Quintana Roo, Tulum, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

 

 

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