The Alaskan Caver December 1987 JUy 20, 1987 Brit Glwfer mip While on maation to the main prt of Alaska with relatives we stopped by the Exit Glacier near Seward. Those who went past the "tourist viewt' area were Kevin, Aaron (Kevin's cousin), and me, We walk4 up the dge of the right side of the glacier (looking up) wring the lower opening, and contirmed on torJards the further mterfall entmnce. htering requid forcting, climbing on ice and rock, and ducking under uaterfalls. By the time we wmz well inside we were mstlp ded. The cave went about 70 feet andcontained the stream, watersputs guahhg from holes in the ~=lls, scallops, and banding. h the ww hck w stopped at the other entdeacribd in Vol 8, No. 4. We fad it to be similar to the draKlng, only lower, and more spacious inside.
'he AfasjScw is the intemittmt plbUc~tim of th~ Glader Grotto of t3-e ktid Speh'4.ogLd Sa=iety. Cop~1%7 bytheGldmhtm. ktrrialsmtcopyrlghted byindi~dualsorby otk groupsmybemyiedby~~PubE~~dedcsedit~@~tothe~dto~ Abdan Caveraradacopyof such p~mis~totheedltos. Si@eooplesare$a.50, otl-emk indicat&,butmeketo~~, E~mtesace$5.03perdumcdslx~. Ul back .issJesare~bleatmst. Allseqtlestsfurkk~andother~~~(cxqtas mtd) should be ded to: W Q.otto, 2944 Ebq Stnet, knchmage, AK 99W, U,S.A. Adcles, yourtrip reprk3,-,& Zettetstotk rn~~be sentt0m.k -, Editor, 631 T& Ik., Admqe, AK 99507. Mderrt Vice Psesident TEEmex -.at Zarge W.at Zarge mtar S.K. Reg. Rep. Alt.rn*Rep. kum J* M,Jr Md M. mu Hik* Tan Fbllimn mAllred We&Jim NichoIls BfT lbw -, AK (907) 2i7-7I.B Fakbnh, AK (907) 455438 -? AK (907) 3493% -9 AK (907) Fairimle", K 1907) 4P. 0. Bmc 376, m, AK W dnehcrrage, A(90f) 3+m kmwmrth, 614 (539) == %It lak City, UT (801) 364-5273 HeathGarrjsaNihUs,BmTlin ~t~Ci~~~ 8,1%7bJim RicbIls arrd Aim Nllk-Michells. (Ekath qU3Lfj.e~ for AlIEkm mp b each pmt h mtriw have Cmtrihtd to a&sn caving.)
RUST CREEK CAVE FINALLY Trip Report by Kevin Allred Abut eight PECH ago Carlene and I did some cave possibility resemh and discoved with the help of the Glacier Grotto, a nmber of promising Limestone areas particularly in Southeast. One cave entrance described in a geologic repost (Red aztd Coats, 1941) describes Rust Creed flowing "for a considerable distance" (See the Alaskan Caver Vol.1, No.2) through a cave which is 30 feet high and 40 fet wide at the upper entrance. Living out in the sticks as we do has required a lot of attention these pt smrs and it happened that there was almp smthim going on to make an expedition too difficult. This smr I well actually X quit full time work minly to goof off on this sort of thing. The only price I could find at the time to get f lorn in arsd out of Rust Lake which is a mile or less blow the cave site was $1180.00 so took the car with skiff on top to Sib via ferry and left there June 23 for the 55 mile trip to Patterson Bay my Sunping off pint. I wish I hah5t had to be alone, but this is the by time fiaska. & the first night there at Patterson two bm-nies (bears) passed 30 feet on either side ht had nothing to do with me. The rain also kgan on that night and contin& for the next three days as my tmvels dLd. I appr08~hed Rust Creek over a peak mrked as being 2058 on which I was =zed to find lots of karst (alpine and subalpine). Close to the sdt as I wandered abut in the white-out d rain I came upn a line of sink holes especially deep (50 to 75 feet) which were developed along a fault. I climbed down one ard it kcam cloggd with snow d brealrdwJn ahwh 50 feet down. I felt that they were dl superficial ss they appeared to pinch down to me= cmks full of rubble. kst of the other sink holes were clogged 3 to 20 feet dm. Further on almost to Rust Creek #ere were a line of ainkhales with water draining into them which all lmked like god promising cave entrances. They were strung along the eastem &e of the band of limestone of which Rust C1.eek Cave cuts through. I continued on to the meadow upstream from where the Rust Creek Cave entrance should be ad set camp up. I knew there was indeed sanething around the corner there as the canyon end4 in an 80 foot wall. The entrance of the cnve is fantastic! It is of a squarish shape being 53 feet wide and about 38 feet high and at the time I uas there had about 350 to 400 gallons of water per minute pwring down it for there was still a lot of snow melt and the rain didn't help either. I dmided to leave any camp at Rust Creek and besides exploring and suneying Rust Creek Cave, strike out with just caving gear to outlying areas. Rather than to go into great detail, here is an outline of whit I discoved about the general ma: Rust Creek Cave smpd at abut 200 feet in and continues as large walk through passage de~crater. The Last day I was there, the sump had gone down ahst 3 feet. I we3.ed the upper end but didn't on the resurgence end which gws in 30 or so feet to B large deep pl with vertical sides. I suspect this pool and also the ones further into the cave will go down as the volm of water decreases to the pint crhere it can all seep out through a pile of talus which forms a dam at the lower entmce. The vole of water in the exit appd abut the same as the upper entm which indicates the cave may be just go straight through conduit and doesn't have mother "feeder" into it. Total sweyed in upper section was 259.5 Pet. The cave's upper srmrp followled the volume of thewater
RUST CREEK CAVE FINALLY Trip Report by Kevin Allred About eight yeam aga Carlene and I did some cave possibility research and discoved with the help of the Glacier Grotto, a nmber of promising limstone areas particularly in Southeast. One cave entrance described in a geologic reprt (Red artd Coats, 1941) describes Wt Creed flowing "for a considerable distance" (See the Alaskan Caver Vol.1, No.2) thmugh a cave which is 30 feet high and 40 feet wide at the upper entrance, Living out in the sticks as we do has required a lot of attention these past smmers and it happend that there uas always something going on to make an e@ition too difficult. This sunnner I well actually I quit full the work mainly to goof off on this sort of thing. The only price 1 could find at the time to gpt flown in and out of Rust Lake which is a mile or less below the cave site was 41180.00 so tmk the car with skiff on top to Sitk via ferry and left there June 23 for the 55 mile trip to Fatterson Bay my jbrmping off point. I wish 1 hadn't had tobe alone, butthis is the busy tkme in Alaska, Ckl the first fight there at Patterson two brownies (-1 passed 30 feet on eithe~ side but had nothing to do with me. The rain also bgan on that night and continued for the next UII.ee days as my travels cfid. I approachd Rust Creek over a peak mark4 as being 2058 on which I was amazed to find lots of k-t (alpine and suldpine). Close to the smdt as I wanderd abut in the white-out and rain I came upon a line of sink holes eswially deep (50 to 75 feet) which were develdong a fault. I clinbd dm one md it became clogged with snow and breakdown abut 50 feet dm. 1 felt that they were all superficial. as they ato pinch down to mere cracks full of rubble. Most of the other sink holes were cloggd 3 to 20 feet down. Further on almost to Rust Creek there were a kine of sinkholes with water draining into them which all look& like god pmmisimg cave entrances. They were stalong the eastern edge of the bard of limestone of which Rust Creek Cave cuts through. Z continued on to the mdou upstream f mm here the kt Creek Cave entrance should be and set camp up, I knm there was indeed smthing around the corner there as the canyon edd in an 80 foot dl. 'The entrance of the cave is fmtastic! It is of a squarish shape being 53 feet r:ide and abut 38 feet high and at the time T ~ias them had abut 350 to 400 gallons of water pr minute pouring down it for there WEIS still a lot of snow melt and the rain didn* help either. I decided to leave mycampatbstCreekandksides exploring and surveying Rzst Creek Cave, strike out with just caving gear to outlying areas. Rather than to go into great detail, here is an outline of whit I discoved abut the general area: Rust Creek Cave smpd at abut 200 feet in, ad continues as large walk hugh passage underwater. The last day I was there, the sump had gone dm hst 3 feet. I surve5.d the uppr end but didn't on the resurgence erd which goes in 30 or so feet to a large deep pl with vertical sides. I sElspect this pod1 snd also the ones further into the cave will ga down as the volm of water decreases to the pint diere it a11 seep out thsough a pile of talus which forrrrs a dam at the lower entrance. The volume of water in the exit appeared about the same as the upper entrance uhich indicates the cave my be just go stmight through conduit and doesn't have another "feeder" into it. Total survey& in upper section was 259.5 feet. The c=avets upper smp folld the volme of the ~xter
A;. Basket Bay or Little Basket Pay has a cave horn as "the Grotto'h-hich carries the stream from Kmk Me. I don't how how far the stream goes underrnudII but appetrently the Sockeye Salmon spawn on the lake side of the mvel Baacan be taken into lower entrance. 8. Rust Creek Cave late July through August during dry or relativlely dry weather, Fky need to swim same pools if it does opera up. C. Black River where it crosses limestone. Also check surrodng areas. D. Whitestripe lake are next to Whitestrip Mountain looked like it may 'be a good area for avers where the limestone levels out into meadows there. mitestrip Pbmtain is named for its wide limestone band which crosses over it and the next muwntain peak just North West. E. *atro creek my be resurgences 3 miles North by Northwest of Rust Creek Cave entrernce. They come off Northegst; edge of Limestone bandat base of cliffs. Conclusions Although most areas on the l~tone bad where I concentrated lookin& for caves appeared to have just minor caves with extensive karst features, there is a potential for some more mjor systems as in Rust Creek Cave. No living cave creatures were fad on this trip, but there my IE some potential for inbresting biological speckns. The regions remoteness makes it very difficult, as in other parts of Alaska, to get to without Wor efforts. Additionally, the area has probably at least 100 inches of rainfall mually. Because of beiw so wet, another tarp would b helpful to dry equiyxnent and clothes der and some caves could require wet suits. Also, plenty of time should be allowed to take advanwe of the htter days on such trips. I think the trip and seeing the country r~as worth the efforts even without caving too. Its wild country, Chichagof Isld is 2,104 square miles. Bellair flying have a deal tfiis summer here a one my seat to the Chichagof mining site is only $63.00 fm Sitka. If there is anyone interested in going, let me how. (P.O. Box 376, Haines, Alaska 99827)
STOP PRESS STARLIGHT CAVE and EL CAPITAN CAVE A postcard from Kewin Ulsed, postmarked September 9th, reads as follows: f l Just returned from a family car camping trip on Prince of Wales Island [southern Southeastern Alaska]. It was a two week trip and we dtd a good bit of research until we got into the major karst areas where we checked one sinkhole and mapped a 2198-foot cave we med "Starlight Cavet". It goes down 195 feet. So as far as we know, that is the longest and maybe deepest in Alaska so far? [Yes, according to our records. Ed.] There were other sinkholes we did not check. Also mapped about 1500 feet in a known cave called El Capftan Cave. Will caatlnuc it next year and it looks very extensive, Will get mre info to you later when we finfsh the one map and write a report. It may be a while. Next summer we hope to get some help? There is some mzhg potentid down there111 Sf ncerel y Kevin "P.S We can drive car within 30 feet: of entrance of Starlight Cave .'" This is a mamelous find and record, and Kevin and Carlene are certainly to be congratulated. TheLr complete report end map of this record cave ulI1 appear in the next Issue of The Alaskan Caves, We should start planning now to go down and give them a hand next summer, We could pool up and drive to PIaines and walk on the ferry there, so it need not be excessively costly, Glacier Grotto 2944 Eanow Street Armchowe, AK 99501
Under a Waterfall July 20, 1987 Exit Glacier Trip / Carlene
The Alaskan Caver --
Members in the News --
Rust Creek Cave Finally Trip Report / Kevin Allred --
Seven Caves Area --
Last Hope Cave --
Starlight Cave and El Captain Cave / J. Rockwell.