|Location:||Hongchiba karst, north of the Chang Jiang, in the Three Gorges area. 80km west of Wuxi. Wanxian Perfecture, Wuxi County.|
|Classification:||Karst cave Ice cave Triassic limestone.|
|Address:||Xia Bing Dong, Tel: +86-, Fax: +86-,|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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Xia Bing Dong is a typical ice cave (Qidong) of the cold trap type. The huge cavern with a single opening has an inclined floor, koing town with an angle of 30° from the entrance. While the entrance portal is five meters high and ten meters wide, the rear end is 40m high and 50m wide. Typical for the whole cave is the triangular form, a result of the slanted rocks.
Having only one entrance almost at the top of the cave chamber makes this cave a cold trap. Lying on 2,200m asl, there are cold winters and cool nights during summer, and the cold air is trapped inside the cave. While the cold air flows in easily, it is not able to leave the cave again in summer. So the temperature stays below zero degree, and the ice remains at least during spring and early summer. Or, as the Chinese tell in their baroque language: "outside trees, colored azaleas in full bloom, and inside the cave is an ice world".
This cave is located in the Hongchiba karst, north of the Chang Jiang, in the Three Gorges area. The mountaneous area has limestone with a thickness of about 2,000m, which means there could be caves inside whith almost 2km of vertical range. At the moment the deepest known cave of the world is somewhat deeper than 2km, so such a cave would be among the top ten deepes caves of the world. Thats a reason why this area draws cavers form all over the world. However, so far the deepest known cave in the area 276m deep.