TCMA Passages

TCMA Passages

Material Information

TCMA Passages
Series Title:
TCMA Passages
George Veni ( suggested by )
Texas Cave Management Association (TCMA)
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Geology ( local )
Resource Management ( local )
Technical Speleology ( local )
serial ( sobekcm )
United States


General Note:
The TCMA Passages is the member newsletter of the Texas Cave Management Association, a Conservancy of the National Speleological Society.
Open Access - Permission by Publisher
Original Version:
(Spring 2002)
General Note:
See Extended description for more information.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida Library
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
K26-04316 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.4316 ( USFLDC Handle )
21292 ( karstportal - original NodeID )

USFLDC Membership

Added automatically
Karst Information Portal

Postcard Information



This item has the following downloads:

Full Text
The TCMA Passages is the member newsletter of the
Texas Cave Management Association, a Conservancy of
the National Speleological Society.


Cavers, Landowners, Government & Endangered Species Collision Course or Cooperation?See ENDANGERED on p. 3 SPRING 2002 Misconceptions seem to abound among Texas cavers and Texas landowners about the Endangered Species Act, endangered species in caves, and what the government can do concerning private land. This article provides accurate information that cavers should know and pass on to cave owners. No endangered invertebrate species exist in caves in rural counties of Texas. It is unlikely that they ever will and certainly not anytime in the foreseeable future. Listing is done based on threat to a species' survival. The discovery of new species does not mean they will be listed. Most species that occur in rural Texas counties are widespread in Texas, so while even if threats to their survival may occur at some caves, the population as a whole remains intact and there is no need for listing. In the urban counties the situation is different. Some species are known only from a few caves (and are restricted to those caves by geologic factors that keep them from occurring in other areas) and the areas in which those caves occur are being heavily impacted by urban development. That is why those species have been listed. Federally listed endangered cave species exist only in the following urban Texas counties: Bexar, Travis, and Williamson. To get the Bexar County species listed took eight years. It is very unlikely that any more species will be listed soon, maybe ever. Photo by Joe N. Fries !"# $%&& $$ !'()*$$ +)$ %##)) %##)$by Linda Palit


2 The bi-annual publication of: The Texas Cave Management Association PO Box 202853 Austin, Texas, 78270-2853 Editor: Joe Mitchell 11463 Enchanted Sunset Dr. San Antonio, TX 78253 e-mail: by Linda Palit TCMA Cave management What's that mean? With the discovery of endangered species in urban caves in Travis, Williamson, and Bexar counties that means preserving the habitat for the critters, and sometimes cave owners finding and funding TCMA to "manage" the habitat around the cave by killing fire ants, checking fences, and oiling cave gates. It's good work to do, and needs to be done. Is that all conservation and management is about in Texas? What about all the caves in all the rural areas that are becoming less and less accessible to Texas cavers? When was the last time you visited Fern Cave or Langtry Lead Cave or any other of the Texas classic caves? And why don't Texas cavers own or manage more of these caves? Do we not want to? When I started working with cave conservation I envisioned making more caves permanently available to Texas cavers, and managing them in a way that keeps them beautiful and available for generations of Texas cavers. That isn't happening nearly enough. Is it possible? One way to keep the caves protected and accessible is through conservation easements with landowners. If a landowner wants to preserve his cave, he can make an agreement with TCMA called a conservation easement. This defines a certain area of land is not to be developed ever, except in the specific ways defined in the agreement such as maybe providing for a house or use of the land for livestock. The landowner receives a reduction in taxes to compensate for the loss of the developable value of the land. TCMA contracts to ensure the agreement is honored, and manages the cave and surrounding land. This agreement survives even if the land is sold, or the owner must pay back the tax savings. One of the best ways to protect caves is through conservation easements with landowners. This allows the cave to be professionally managed, helps limit liability, and provides controlled and continued access to cavers. Conservation easements are an enforceable contract between the owner and other interested party such as the Nature Conservancy or the TCMA. The easement defines the responsibility of each of the parties and usually limits development of the property in exchange for a reduction in taxes. The agreement is recorded on the property deed and survives the future sale of the property Cavers can also purchase caves. As a group, the TCMA also has the purchasing power to acquire some of the best Texas caves and maintain there access to cavers. Over the next year, the TCMA will, with the support of cavers, purchase two Texas caves with the expressed intent of opening them up to caving. The size and importance of these caves depends on the participation and enthusiasm of Texas cavers. This will be used as a basis for further purchases to help assure continued access to caves by cavers for generations to come. The TCMA has recently set up a land acquisition committee and is actively seeking caves to purchase. However, we need your support. This includes financial as well as labor to identify and manage perspective caves. Permanent access to all Texas caves is not possible. Can we work together, and save some? I think Texas Cavers can.


3 ENDANGERED (from p. 1) !"#! $%!! &'! (!)# !$! There is no agency, federal or state, that can take some family's land or tell him them to manage their cave whether it has cave critters or not. The right of eminent domain exists in which the government can force you to sell your land because of building a road or installing a power line. That has nothing to do with caves. The federal agency in charge of overseeing endangered species is the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Their main charge is to protect the species, and to develop a plan that will lead to the recovery of the species so that they can be delisted or at least protect them from extinction if delisting is impossible. To do this usually involves protecting habitat. For cave species this means not filling caves with concrete or covering them with roads or buildings, and protecting the area around caves so that fire ants, fertilizers, polluted water, too much silt, or changes in the internal environment of the cave do not harm the species in the cave. Urban county cave owners may be asked to protect their cave habitat in these ways. If a cave in an urban area is on land that an owner wants to develop, it becomes more complicated for the owner and the developer. If a cave with endangered species is in the development area or close to the development area so that endangered cave species are likely to be harmed or lost, whoever is developing the land must file a plan with U.S. Fish and Wildlife which usually provides for saving 2-4 other caves forever (in perpetuity) and saving enough habitat around the cave to ensure that the cave environment is protected. The amount of land that which must be protected is typically 6999 acres, although in some special cases much smaller areas may be accepted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. This process is called mitigation. The caves preserved are mitigated for the caves destroyed or impacted. The species in the mitigated caves must be the same as the species in the caves that are lost or harmed. Finding caves to mitigate for the cave being destroyed is the first problem for the developer. The developer must locate caves with the same species and buy them before development can begin. Then a plan must be filed and approved by U.S. Fish and Wildlife. The problem is to locate the cave. The developer may make random calls looking for a cave in the area, talking to landowners explaining the perils of owning an "endangered species" cave and offering to purchase the cave and surrounding property if they have one. If the landowners do not have a cave, perhaps they know somebody who does? The developer tells the landowners that their caves are liabilities. That is true if the landowners want to develop their land but less true if they do not. However, some landowners have determined that their caves are worth more money than land without caves. They sell their caves for mitigation to developers and are asking higher and higher prices. Other cave owners in the urban counties are frightened about the liability of their cave with it possibly containing endangered species. Some are anxious to sell the cave. Others refuse cavers access to their caves. A few have welcomed cavers to look for caves with endangered species so the caves can be sold for mitigation at top dollar rates. Texas cavers need to have accurate information about this process. Developers look out for their own interests and use the Endangered Species Act to promote their self-interest. This may or may not be in the interest of owners or cavers. Information is power; let's not let it be used against us.


4 Robber Baron Cave: Status Report on Gate Repairsby George VeniI n the fall of 2001, TCMA received a grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to improve the gate on Robber Baron Cave and modify the grounds for better management of the federally listed endangered species that live in the cave. During inspection of the gate to begin the modifications, it was discovered that the massive structure is on the verge of collapse. Access to the cave was immediately closed. Bexar Grotto's Robber Baron Committee formed a Cave Gate Subcommittee to rebuild the gate and reestablish access to the cave. The Subcommittee is comprised of Rick Corbell, Bob Cowell, Steve Gutting, Kurt Menking, Alan Montemayor, Linda Palit, Carl Ponebshek, Chris Vail, and George Veni. The subcommittee is planning to remove "The Bunker," the large gate structure, from the cave's entrance in order to remove the rotting underlying railroad ties. The current plan is to replace the ties with vertical manhole standpipe. The bunker will be installed on top of the standpipe with some modifications to improve ecological and air quality in the cave. No date has been set thus far for the repairs. The committee is now seeking donations of materials and equipment. Once these are lined up, cavers will be notified and invited to help with the work. In the meantime, if anyone has contacts for donations of manhole standpipes, cranes, dumpsters, or other heavy equipment, please contact me at or call 210-5584403. The subcommittee has been looking into sources for these materials but there is no guarantee our sources will produce anything so alternative suggestions are welcome. Repairs on the gate were stalled when it seemed a construction company would provide all of the support, but then had to withdraw for reasons unrelated to TCMA. The subcommittee is now moving at full steam to finish this work as soon as possible. All contributions to TCMA are tax-deductible and TCMA can provide you with its tax numbers upon request. Announcements will be made to call for help when the repair work will be performed.Robber Baron Cave is the longest cave in Bexar County. It is also the only cave in the county that has been open to the public as a tourist attraction. From 1926-1933, an estimated 300,000 people toured the cave, which was then located outside the city of San Antonio on the Old Kings Highway to Austin in what is now Alamo Heights. Since closing due to the Great Depression, the cave served to commercially grow mushrooms but mainly fell into disrepair. As the city grew around the cave, it became a local playground for children who risked injury to themselves while vandalizing the cave. In 1980, members of the San Antonio Grotto gated the cave for the owner to limit his liability and stem the tide of damage. They explored and mapped the cave and documented its rich history. Geological and biological studies were also done in the cave, discovering six blind invertebrate species found nowhere else on Earth. In December 2001, two of these species were listed as endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. When the cave's owner died in 1994, his bequest had the cave donated to the Bexar Grotto, whose members arranged for the TCMA to own it with Bexar Grotto as the cave's manager. The grotto has led many educational trips into the cave and conducted many clean-up projects both below and above ground to be good neighbors to the surrounding homeowners.The Robber Baron entrance before the installation of the current gate. Photo by David Nash Photo from the Caves of Bexar County Second Edition by George Veni. Used with permission.


5 Last March, Bat Conservation International hosted a symposium for cave managers in Austin Some 120 participants from all levels of state and federal bureaucracies, private managers and local people attended the three day meetings. The symposium gave participants a chance to present and assimilate material concerning bats, caves, and bat conservation. The Texas Cave Management Association was asked to sponsor and conduct a tour of gated caves in the Austin. This was a Thursday continuation of the symposium scheduled for March 7, 2002. It began and ended at the Red Lion Inn, symposium headquarters. A 55-passengere bus rolled into the parking lot at 9:00 am and once loaded, began the first run to south Austin. Goat Cave Karst Preserve was the first stop and Mark Sanders, biologist for Austin Parks and Recreation, presented the new fence around Goat Cave and discussed the economics and aesthetics of the project. The next two stops were the Western Oaks Karst Preserve and Midnight Cave. If you haven't seen Western Oaks, you are missing a great little park with a gravel trail and several caves. Interpretive signage is scheduled soon. The tour continued past District Park Cave and Whirlpool bypassing Cotterell Cave in the Spicewood Springs Preserve due to lack of time. These caves are well worth the time it takes to stroll down the path. A fabulous sit-down lunch of Southwestern chicken was catered by Tastebuds. The flowing waters against the backdrop of limestone cliffs at Bull Creek provided a soothing view of pristine Austin. All too soon, the bus was loaded and the tour continued. At the corner of Highways 2222 and 620, Mike Warton pointed out the trail to Tooth Cave. by Ron Ralph This small grotto contains more endangered species than any other in the Austin area and was the impetus for many environmental laws pertaining to caves and endangered species. The tour continued past Lakeline Cave at the mall and stopped at the Buttercreek Karst Preserve for a look at Animal Canyon and Cedar Elm Cave. Fern Bluff Cave, with a classic "A-frame" design gate, sits alone in the middle of a brush-cleared Municipal Park. Last on the list was Beck Ranch cave where obliging locals equipped with flashlights and low batteries turned out to show participants there really were vandals in the suburbs. The tour returned to the symposium hotel at 5:00 p.m. in time for happy hour. Rune Burnett visited all gated caves to figure mileage and drive times and to photograph the entrances. Rune also helped assemble the guidebook and figure the route. William Russell put together data for the guidebook and helped with final editing. Jim Kennedy was invaluable answering questions about the symposium and visited several of the cave localities to help in the decision making process. Mike Walsh, with Texas Cave Conservancy, showed many of the newly gated caves under TCC management and helped out with the tour by answering questions on site. Mike Warton, an involved cave gate builder and as a presenter at the symposium was on the bus with a rolling dialogue on each cave gate. Logan McNatt and Michael Moore assisted with logistics and Don Broussard assisted with the luncheon arrangements. A second printing of the guidebook is in press and will be available at the next Texas Speleological Association meeting. It contains a great road log to many nice Austin area caves and presents historical footnotes never before published.


6 TCMA hosted a Karst Project at the Bracken& Reeh Ranch Property north of the Cibolo Creek in far northeast Bexar County on February 1 and 2. Volunteers attended Saturday and/or Sunday to search for caves, karst features, and any other significant land feature worthy of note. A total of 25 volunteers worked for approximately 175 hours searching the 400 + acre portion of the property. Near the Cibolo Creek the Kainer formation of the Glenrose Limestone is predominant. This is not ideal for extensive cave formation. Further north is the Basal Nodular Member of the Edwards Limestone. This is an exceptionally hard layer of the Edwards, where voids existing underground often do not have passages to the surface. Limited recharge probably takes place on the property, but the presence of creek beds indicates some water runs off to Cibolo Creek. The main creek is intermittent, with some recharge probably occurring in some areas of the creek bed. Overall, the land has the appearance of karst meaning there are many areas of limestone pavement, areas of limestone rock with significant weathering and holes, and areas of very little topsoil. This indicates that rainwater infiltrates into the ground recharging the aquifer. Significant cave features were sparse. Two small caves were exposed with minor movement of rocks. One cave was approximately 15 m in length and was located at approximately 1107 feet elevation on the central northwest flat area of the cave. It was a relatively uniform feature of crawl space and may have been a paleospring. A second cave was found at the front portion of the property on the southeast portion of the property at approximately 1050 elevation. It was a low small room of approximately 10 m long with a dirt choke at the end and a well-formed stalactite. This cave might be excavated and expose more passage. Features included limestone crack with moist air flowing out and a frog and cave cricket. It was located at the coordinates 0560333 and 3287252 on the ranch road area not too far from the pipeline. A second feature was located at 0560602 and 3287409; it was about 2 m off the ranch road running east of the pipeline; ended at a formation choke of flowstone and a stalactite. by Linda Palit ABOVE: The TCMA Board met along the Cibolo Creek (seen in the background) at the Reeh Ranch. RIGHT: Kate proudly shows off the results of her digging at Froggies Fissure.PHOTO BY ALLEN COBB PHOTO BY KATHY SCANLON


7 !"!by Joe Mitchell The Mayberry Tract is a 345 acre parcel of land located in northwestern Bexar County along Hwy. 211 across from Government Canyon SNA. This tract is currently for sale and is being considered for purchase by the City of San Antonio as part of the program to acquire and protect land over the recharge zone of the Edwards Aquifer. On March 3, the Texas Nature Conservancy asked the TCMA to evaluate the land for its cave potential. Nine volunteers attended the event and spent most of the day combing the property in search of caves and karst features. The property borders San Geronomo Creek which is cuts a deeply incised valley. The bulk of the property is highlands rising a couple hundred feet above the creek. The highland section is relatively flat except that it id bisected by a dry creek which cuts substantial cliffs in some areas. The first area to be searched was at the base of the valley along San Geronomo. A small cave was found that contained numerous formations in a small room. After no other features were found in the valley, the group moved up onto the ridge top and split up into groups the search down toward the dry creek with the cliffs. Along the way the remnants of long since eroded cave formations were seen. The dry creek area was quite scenic with numerous exposed outcrops of limestone seen along with various solutional features. Although a good deal of time was spent searching this area, no cave entrances were found. Late in the day while looking on the opposite hill side of the dry creek, a potential opening was found under a rock that had harvestmen living in it. The group dug on this for a while, but determined that it probably would not lead to anything. This is a very nice tract of land and at first glance it appears that caves should be numerous. Although not all of the property was searched, the lack of features was discouraging. At least one further trip should be conducted though to examine those areas missed in the first trip. Significant recharge features in the sense of clear depressions or sinkholes which might lead to underground caverns were also sparse. Additional interesting features were noted on the property. Along one streambed on the property, palmettos were growing. This is very unusual for this part of Texas, and especially for the karsty hill country area. A cemetery is marked on the topographical map. At that site there were no exceptionally clear indications of actual graves, though one slightly sunken depression was noted. There were four fence posts rotted off to about ground level in the middle of the area, which might have been a clearing. There were also four to six exceptionally large live oak trees in the area. Other areas had additional live oak groves with trees of significant size. Cedar (juniper) trees of significant size were also noted, and my provide bird habitat of an important nature for warbler habitat. Additional searches of this area are unlikely to expose extensive karst areas not already discovered. Recharge does occur, but not to the extent or magnitude of that in the central Bexar County Edwards Limestone areas. The land is extremely attractive, however. The lands on the Reeh/Bracken Property that are south of the Cibolo are more likely to have significant karst features, recharge features, and cavern development. ABOVE: Cindy's Crack was another karst feature dig at the TCMA Reeh Ranch trip.PHOTO BY KATHY SCANLON


8 Conference Report: 2001 National Cave and Karst Management Symposiumby George VeniI don't recall previous reports in Geo2 on the National Cave and Karst Management Symposium (NCKMS). While it is not strictly a geoscience meeting, every two years this conference convenes and includes important geoscience papers. Unlike the Geology and Geography Session at NSS Convention where geology papers dominate, geography papers with a strong management emphasis dominate the NCKMS. This year the NCKMS was held in Tucson, Arizona, hosted by Jerry Trout and the National Forest Service with the help of Tucson's Escabrosa Grotto. Pre-symposium caving I arrived a few days early to catch some caving trips. I thought several cavers would be present for the weekend trips, but only found Cheryl Jones from Virginia, waiting with me for the Tucson cavers on Saturday morning, 13 October 2001. Dave and Phyllis Hamer coordinated the preand post-symposium caving trips and were assisted throughout the week by several Escabrosa Grotto members. We drove about an hour southeast of Tucson into one of the "sky islands," lush mountains that rise out of the desert "sea," of the Coronado National Forest. Our destination was Cave of the Bells. We drove to within a 2-minute walk of the double-gated cave and headed in. The cave somewhat reminded me of Colossal Cavern, a show cave near Interstate Highway 10 about 40 km to the north. Bells is often dry with tall, narrow passages, and better decorated than Colossal. Its passages are generally oriented along strike and faults with 1-m-wide shatter zones. The cave is a phreatically formed 3dimensional maze with about 4 km of surveyed passages. It extends down over 70 m to near the water table, but we stayed in the upper levels and explored a loop that included a couple of nice sized rooms. The cave has been known for many years and has seen considerable damage to its speleothems. It's named for some stalactites that long ago were discovered to ring like bells when struck. Aragonite is abundant and often well developed in many of the areas we visited. The Tucson cavers have the admirable ethic to wear only clean clothes caving to keep the caves as pristine as possible. After we left Bells, Cheryl and I were up late buying laundry soap and getting our gear clean for the next day's trip into Onyx Cave. We were a little disappointed to find that we were nearly as dirty as when we exited Bells by the time we got to the decorated areas of Onyx. Looking back, this isn't too surprising. The cave is beautiful, but like nearby Cave of the Bells, it has a long history, and some parts are muddy from trampling. A 63year-old woman who had explored and photographed Onyx Cave in 1958 accompanied us on our trip. She accidentally met the Hamers while she was in town briefly, and they got her geared up to revisit the cave with her daughter. Onyx Cave has about 3.3 km of surveyed passages with a few leads still to wrap up. Like Bells, it extends to near the water table, but since it is located higher up the mountainside, it has a greater vertical extent of about 90 m. We again stayed in the upper levels which have a relatively flat ceiling, but a lot of free-climbing is needed as the floor steeply rises and falls. Unlike Bells, the passages in Onyx are larger, often wider than high. There is at least one large room that we didn't see. Flowstone and dripstone fill much of the cave and a lot of its ups and down are over large deposits. Shields and helictites are abundant. Some pools contain mammalary spar deposits and thick shelfstone. Near the end of our trip, Dave and other local cavers retreated to help the non-cavers out to the entrance past some tricky climbs. Phyllis led me, Cheryl, and Pat Seiser from West Virginia on a nice loop trip before we exited a short time after the others. Monday was officially a pre-symposium day, although many people had arrived. Carol Zokaites offered a Project Underground workshop to train people in educational methods for teaching children about caves and karst. She has run Project Underground for several years and has developed a sizeable network of instructors throughout the country who routinely teach kid-level versions of karst hydrology, biology, and management. I went to Kartchner Caverns State Park, located about 65 km southeast of Tucson. The cave is the newest jewel in the Arizona State Park system and has been highly publicized. I had been to the cave before but went to visit with geologist Dr. Rick Toomey, who had recently been hired to work as (Reprinted from Geo2, 2002, vol. 29, no. 1)


9 the cave specialist. While there, Rick invited me to stay and see a demo of the Cyrax, a laser surveying machine. It shoots 1,000 laser points per second, calculating direction and distance, and then plots those points in space to create a 3-dimension map. We hauled the two big Cyrax equipment boxes and several smaller bags of gear into the cave and began surveying the walls. A 5-minute scan surveyed a 10m-long by 6-m-high section of wall at a resolution of 1 cm, (maximum resolution is 2 mm with a rated accuracy of within 6 mm, and the laser can read distances to about 200 m) and after about 2 minutes of data processing, we were looking at the wall in 3-D on the laptop. Very impressive. As soon as they come up with a hand-held version and drop the price from nearly $240,000 with all of the accoutrements, traditional cave surveying will become obsolete. Personnel from Geo-Map of Tucson were demonstrating the machine. They explained how it has been used in mineral and metal mining, how algorithms have been written to identify fracture planes from the data and plot them on stereo nets, and how signal reflectivity can be used to identify surfaces with greater and lesser moisture. The Cyrax and its descendents in the future have tremendous potential to tell us much more about a cave's hydrogeology than is now possible through standard cave maps. I returned to Tucson that evening to a possibly new tradition for the NCKMS. A "crackerbarrel" session was held, an open forum discussion on a topic of interest. The forum was loosely moderated and a variety of topics were offered. The potential application of OSHA regulations on cave work was discussed. The general consensus was that it was a bad idea but that OSHA regulations may be coming for some regions and fields of work. Symposium "There's no good time for bad news," Jerry Trout told us after the introductory remarks to kick off the symposium, and then relayed the terrible news that longtime NSS member, Geo2 Section member, NCKMS attendee, and cave management luminary Dr. George N. Huppert was killed in a car accident while driving to the symposium. The announcement had to be made, but of course it cast a pall over the event, with fresh news about the accident and services arriving throughout the week and keeping the wound raw. Harvey DuChene did a fine job to restore the spirits of the symposium with his keynote address. He raised an important theme that was highlighted by speakers in many of the papers that followed: the importance of volunteers in much cave management and science work. Harvey was followed that day by 15 papers focused on management issues. Among papers of interest to Geo2 readers, Zelda Bailey gave an update on the status of the National Cave and Karst Research Institute, most of which was covered in her report in a recent issue of Geo2. Tim Stokes and Paul Griffiths outlined a procedure they developed to conduct vulnerability assessments of karst areas for forestry management in British Columbia using hydrogeologic and geomorphological data. Susan White focused on karst development and management in Pleistocene aeolianites in Australia. Henry Schneiker presented the specifications for an in-cave weather station he is building. It promises to be resistant to the high humidities found in caves, and have long battery life, abundant data storage, and fine resolution measurement of cave climates that is beyond the ability of most available instrumentation. Wednesday proved a short day for papers. They were given in the morning and followed by an afternoon fieldtrip. Management-oriented papers continued, followed by several geology papers. Rod Horrocks used hydrogeologic factors to delineate the probable maximum extent of Wind Cave, South Dakota, as a means of identifying critical management areas that do not rely on cavers having to find and map passages before those areas receive consideration for protection. Some debate ensued on how effective some factors may be in limiting cave development, but the GIS method he presented shows high potential for application in many settings. Other morning papers included a morphologic and hydrologic sinkhole classification system for land use planning by Wil Orndorff and Joey Fagan and discussion of seismic damage in caves by Roberta Surface and Eric Gilli. After the morning sessions, everyone headed onto buses for an afternoon trip to Kartchner Caverns. We divided into four groups and shuttled between four areas, two in the cave and two outside. My group first visited the 1.3-million dollar Discovery Center, an incredible facility built to have little impact on the cave and surrounding terrain while providing outstanding museum-quality displays and hand-on/crawl-through activities about Kartchner, caves, and karst. We then crowded into the center's meeting room for a demonstration of the Cyrax laser surveyor. With that complete, we moved into the cave to view the developed areas and then the areas still under development. Most people I spoke with agreed that Kartchner is not the


10 most magnificent cave in the world, as the press would have you believe, although it is a wonderful cave. What stood out about Kartchner for the cave management audience is the new standard it sets for show cave development and management: high curbs to control visitors and prevent lint dispersion, a sewer system for the removal of effluent following daily washing of the trail, a detailed micro-climate monitoring system, a sophisticated utilities system to conserve energy usage and input into the cave, extensive use of plastic sheeting and other techniques to cover and protect areas of the cave near trail construction zones, among several other factors. Thursday's papers continued with management themes but also included ten papers on cave biology and seven on GIS and mapping in karst. I gave a paper on the use of GIS in the San Antonio, Texas, area to identify hydrologically and biological important areas of the Edwards Aquifer recharge zone for purchase and protection. My favorite paper that day was by Jim Baichtal and Richard Langendoen on the use of LIDAR (LIght Detection And Ranging), a form of aerial laser topographic mapping, to study and manage karst on Kosciusko Island in the Tongass National Forest in southeastern Alaska. This high-resolution mapping is important not only for guiding forestry practices, but it has tremendous application in morphological and hydrological analysis of the karst. Jim gave one humorous anecdote on the importance of working closely with non-karst specialists who processed data. The firm he contracted to do the survey initially threw out many data points as obviously "bad data," since single laser points shouldn't be 100 m lower in elevation than others surrounding them only a few meters away. Jim explained that those "anomalies" were in fact the deep shafts he was looking for! The papers ended in the early afternoon so everyone could enjoy some time at the Desert Museum on the outskirts of Tucson. Most of the museum is outdoors rather than indoors, and includes an outstanding set of trails through displays of desert plants and animals. The prairie dogs were certainly the most entertaining. The museum is also known for its extensive and realistic artificial cave, complete with stoopways, water, and pits, but no mud. Once the museum closed to the public, a cocktail social and catered banquet were prepared for symposium participants. Gary Tenens and Randy Tufts, the cavers who discovered Kartchner Caverns, gave the banquet address on their discovery and extensive efforts at secrecy until the cave could be protected. They were followed by a brief memorial for George Huppert and an announcement that a cave conservation fund in his name is being established with the American Cave Conservation Association. Jerry Trout closed the evening with acknowledgements for the many people who helped put this fine symposium together. Jerry's closing statements were given because Friday's papers would be over before noon and many of the over 150 participants would be returning home before the day was done. Those papers included discussion of toxic materials in the karst environment, such as Michael Anderson's and Joe Meiman's papers on how atrizine can be transported more effectively via suspended sediments than by water through Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, and two more papers on geology: "concealed" or "apokrytic" karst in southern Arizona by William Peachey and karst in arid sections of Australia by Nick White. Post-symposium events As the symposium wrapped-up on Friday morning, the Tucson paper greeted us with news that the Arizona State Parks Board met the previous day about a proposed resort near Kartchner Cavern that threatened to impact the cave. The Board decided to offer the developers a fair price for the property, and if it was not accepted, they would condemn the land and pay whatever a judge would feel that the condemned land is worth. This is an extreme and difficult measure to protect and manage karst, but one that is not used nearly enough. I applaud the Board for showing the conviction and political courage to take such action when it is justified. I needed to return to Texas, but those staying for the post-symposium events found a variety to choose from. Jim Kennedy of Bat Conservation International offered two workshops on bat conservation, the Hamers offered more caving trips, and for those more politically inclined, the NSS Board of Governors and the Cave Research Foundation's board met that weekend in the area. The 2001 Tucson meeting proved to be another success in the series of the NCKMS. Proceedings are promised soon, but their slow publication remains the main problem of the symposia. I hope this meeting breaks that trend. The next NCKMS will be held in Fall 2003 in Gainesville, Florida, chaired by Steve Omeroid and hosted by the NSS Cave Diving Section.


11 The TCMA has recently acquired a Karst Groundwater Model for our educational outreach programs. Largely a result of encouragement from Val Hildreth and Jim Werker, Co-Chairs of the NSS Conservation Committee, the TCMA applied to the NSS for a grant to pay for the purchase and delivery of the Karst Groundwater Model. The Model is available to any TCMA member wishing to use it for demonstration purposes. The model consists of two clear plexiglass sheets containing layered sand and plastic which simulate clastic and karst aquifers. Injection wells, a sink hole and other point sources are included and can be used to pump or inject contaminants (colored water) into various parts of the model. Water can also be introduced by pouring water into reservoirsTCMA Awarded NSS Conservation Grant-Karst Groundwater Modelby Aimee Beveridge at either end. The kit includes a carrying case, quart sized flask, hand operated vacuum pump, various syringes for injecting "pollutants" and an instruction manual. The model demonstrates many groundwater concepts including: How groundwater moves Flow rate of groundwater is dependent on the type of aquifer (eg: karst, gravel, fine sand) Human activity at or near land surface can contaminate groundwater If you are interested in borrowing the model please contact Aimee Beveridge at aimee be or call her at 512-463-7995 during the day or 512-444-4881 in the evenings. The TCMA Board at work: From the meeting of Feb 3, 2002 at the Reeh Ranch. The new Karst Groundwater Model can be seen on the table near the center.PHOTO BY ALLEN COBB


12 !"#$%#$$& "!'(%") *))+, !"#$ %&'()*+"&'()(, *,-) -(. /0//-(. 1-!-(#(-! #1## 2,# *.')..) ) .0 3/34# #54-6 5,#-6 ,. *./0(+ (#71(' (1#!( 2(1# *1+/()( +*#238+(99 #:#-(!+# +-('** 1#:1*(99## %*#-(#!( )! #5# 1# *)) 6#6 ;!-<( 1 +=/6# -(##(#66'1 2;# 61>3*7&&6 ?#1 ###-(# ## Directors/Officers AttendingAbsent: Jay Jorden, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2001)Dan Hogenauer, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2001) Bill Russell, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2001) Noted Attendees: Linda Palit, Pres. & Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2002)Ron Ralph, Past Director Julie Jenkins, VP & Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2002)Carl Ponebshek, Past Director Bob Burnett, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2002)Susan Souby, Secretary Sue Schindel, Treas & Direc (Jan 2001-Dec 2003) Aimee Beveridge, Director (Jan 2001-2003 Walter Feaster, Director (Jan 2001-2003


13 *2+)+,"'%"'3,,).+,()''4 ###!!6 6@!-<7# 6 *(.5)!1++.,++% ,%66(7).!66(%1++. ,++%6"'++ !"-(2" 55!6" :"55!65 (5"? *',%8+( -(-61#1$ #1551 -(#,#-( #!-<1-:2#1 29(12-( 54@4<# )( $>6!6!-#$# 1 #10A# 1#(;2#1 $:1 1#11 ##)#*=B+ -#(66 ---( $9C=B+';<9 A# ####D -( C'E -1-(; =# $##6!### ##;# ,.23"+('8 (!#34"; 8+ 5:) 2#(: 1 ,#(#15 6655 +(0..),. $>7-#F(G: -(### #15F;*1, $2;*1# #11#1$ #F-#1# #(G1 3$:1 .."9, (#### -(,--#()$666! !655-1-(


14 ( !:,;%#$$# "!"%+< Directors/Officers AttendingAbsent: Bill Russell, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2004)Jay Jorden, Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2004) Linda Palit, Pres. & Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2002)Julie Jenkins, VP & Director (Jan 2000-Dec 2002) Bob Burnett, Director (Jan 2002-Dec 2002)Walter Feaster, Director (Jan 2001-2003) Sue Schindel, Treas & Direc (Jan 2001-Dec 2003) Noted Attendees: Aimee Beveridge, Director (Jan 2001-2003)Allan Cobb Joe Mitchell, Director (Jan 2002-Dec 2004)Susan Souby, Secretary ) *"())+, (3 :!6## 4@4 *,-) !@@< @ @ @@(&) ? 04DE. 40442.?HHH?.8// 1-! @ ?@ 2 -!":! '#1 91 #1 -(2I#11 6!123+1 2 *..) *.').. # -(# 1## # )## (#!##-( 2-((#+ (-## # *=B+.?,0# (11# )1#! !D6E# *"9, $-(>&&J 2-#) ###!6$5 (1# -#@()-$66! !55!6-1!$, *+(, *) 6661#!-<# =/6#1+6


15 61# 2 1# *(.(," 55)*<. )1'+=5 *2 *((-(*((###*(( $#-4#%:B": !::5++31-(&()! -#"5-(## !###-( #. 4 -(-(!12, ?#!#3*(3* .++23"'" !; ;16&&:1; *((.5. 2!"-((#1( D(H,/E-!12


16 !" #! $%#&' ()*%+, -$./+/+, 0&% 111&%2 Life members making generous donations Donna Anderson Bruce Anderson Michael Anderson Bill Bentley Bob (Rune) Burnett George Crosby Joann DeLunna Walter Feaster Rod Goke Dan Hogenauer Jay Jorden Joel King Pinto Koelling Dave McAdoo Dave Cave McClung Linda Palit Dale Pate Carl Ponebshek Ron Ralph Tag Swann Patricia Wilson New members: Randy Baker Tom Brown Mark Gee Ryan Lozano Tommy Joe Annmarie Mikelski Mike Moore Mike Quinn John Serur Special thanks to George Veni and Associates Chris Thibodaux For their business memberships Membership renewals: Robert Albach Linda Aldrich Jacqui Bills Aimee Beveridge James & Karen Clary Rick Corbell Bob Cowell Fran Hutchins Keith Heuss Julie Jenkins Carol Henderson Jack Johnson Cindy Lee Joe & Evelynn Mitchell David & Lillis Moulton Emily & Kevin McGowen Kurt Menking Sue & Gary Schindel and family Justin Shaw Peter Sprouse Susan Souby Steve Taylor Mary Wright & Chris Cantrell


Download Options

Choose Size
Choose file type
Cite this item close


Cras ut cursus ante, a fringilla nunc. Mauris lorem nunc, cursus sit amet enim ac, vehicula vestibulum mi. Mauris viverra nisl vel enim faucibus porta. Praesent sit amet ornare diam, non finibus nulla.


Cras efficitur magna et sapien varius, luctus ullamcorper dolor convallis. Orci varius natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Fusce sit amet justo ut erat laoreet congue sed a ante.


Phasellus ornare in augue eu imperdiet. Donec malesuada sapien ante, at vehicula orci tempor molestie. Proin vitae urna elit. Pellentesque vitae nisi et diam euismod malesuada aliquet non erat.


Nunc fringilla dolor ut dictum placerat. Proin ac neque rutrum, consectetur ligula id, laoreet ligula. Nulla lorem massa, consectetur vitae consequat in, lobortis at dolor. Nunc sed leo odio.