Sportswoman, aged 50, emerges after 500 days living 230ft deep in cave with no contact with outside world

Beatriz Flamini, a 50-year-old Spanish extreme sportswoman, has emerged from a 230ft deep cave after spending an incredible 500 days alone inside with no contact with the outside world.

Her participation in the experiment was closely monitored by scientists who were studying the human mind and circadian rhythms.

According to her support team, Flamini has potentially set a new world record for the longest time spent in a cave. She is renowned for her achievements as an elite sportswoman, mountaineer, and climber.

At the age of 48, Beatriz Flamini entered the cave in Los Gauchos near Motril, Spain. She spent a total of 500 days underground, celebrating two birthdays in solitude.

Her challenge began on Saturday, November 20, 2021, before significant events such as the outbreak of the Ukraine war, the resulting cost of living crisis, and the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.

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To avoid overwhelming Beatriz Flamini, the courageous adventurer who emerged into the light of spring in southern Spain, media coverage was intentionally limited.

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On national television station TVE, Flamini was seen wearing dark glasses as she emerged from the cave, grinning towards her support team. Despite wearing masks, they embraced her.

When asked about her experience shortly afterwards, Flamini described it as “excellent” and “unbeatable” by reporters. She revealed that she had been silent for a year and a half, only talking to herself.

‘I lose my balance, that’s why I’m being held. If you allow me to take a shower – I haven’t touched water for a year and a half – I’ll see you in a little while. Is that okay with you?’

During her time underground, Flamini kept herself busy with exercises to stay fit, as well as painting, drawing, and knitting woolly hats. She had taken two GoPro cameras to document her experience, and went through 60 books and 1,000 liters of water, as reported by her support team.

Speaking in footage provided by Timecave, the project’s name, Flamini shared her thoughts on being in the cave:

‘Caves are quite secure places, but very hostile to the human being and the brain because you don’t see the light of day, you don’t know how time is passing, you don’t have neurological stimulation.

‘It’s not that the time passes more quickly or more slowly, simply that it doesn’t pass, because it’s always four in the morning.’

Throughout her time in the cave, Flamini was closely monitored by a team of psychologists, researchers, speleologists (cave specialists), and physical trainers who observed her without making contact, ensuring her physical and mental well-being.

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Scientists from the universities of Granada and Almeria, as well as a Madrid-based sleep clinic, have reportedly utilized Flamini’s experience for their research. They have been studying the effects of social isolation and extreme temporary disorientation on people’s perception of time, as well as the potential neuropsychological and cognitive changes that occur when humans are underground, including the impact on circadian rhythms and sleep, as reported by Spanish news agency EFE.

While the Guinness Book of Records currently recognizes the 33 Chilean and Bolivian miners who survived 69 days trapped underground in the San José copper-gold mine collapse in Chile in 2010 as holding the record for the “longest time survived trapped underground,” it is unclear if there is a separate record for voluntary time spent living in a cave, and whether Flamini has broken it. A spokesman for Guinness was unable to immediately confirm this information.