The Texas Caver

The Texas Caver

Material Information

The Texas Caver
Series Title:
The Texas Caver
Texas Speleological Association
Texas Speleological Association
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Regional Speleology ( local )
Technical Speleology ( local )
serial ( sobekcm )
United States


General Note:
Contents: That stinking cave / Tom Warden, Texarkana -- Guthrie Cave, Texas / Jim Estes -- Cave brain / Bro. Marvin F. Sanneman S.M. -- Astrology for cavers / Jacque Gray -- News -- Did you know that? -- Dobb's Cave, Texas / Jim Estes.
Open Access - Permission by Publisher
Original Version:
Vol. 14, no. 8 (1969)
General Note:
See Extended description for more information.

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University of South Florida Library
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University of South Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
K26-04527 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.4527 ( USFLDC Handle )
10686 ( karstportal - original NodeID )
0040-4233 ( ISSN )

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TEXAS CAVER P. 0. Box 143 Abilene, Texas 79604 VOLUME XIV, 8 August, 1969 The Texas Caver is a monthly publication and is printed in Abilene, Texas. It was adopted in 1961 as the Official Publication of The Texas Spe leological Association, a regional Internal Organ izati on of the National Speleological Society. The Caver ende avors to present Texas caving and Texas cavers; Texas caves and Texas cave life; history, folklore, cartoons, and events of Texas speleology; and proceedings and reports of The Texas Speleological Association (TSA). Contribitors are solicited on a volunteer bas is, and anyone desiring to contribute articles to this publication may do so. Material to be print ed should be typed and double-spaced, and mailed to the Editor, PO Box 143, Abilene, Texas, na later than the 6th of each month of issue. Photos should be black and white glossy prints, and become the property of the Caver unless specified for return by the sender. Subscription Price (12 issues) ----Complimentary Sub3criptions to Organizations for cave owners --Single copies ---------------------$3.00 1.50 .25 EDITOR . . PUBLISHER . PHOTOLITHOGRAPHER ADVER TISING DIREC10 R PHOTO TIP S EDITOR TYP I N G & L AYOUT ASSl:!'l-iBLY . CONTENTS George Gray Jam e s Estes Bryant Lilly Bart Crisman Pete Lindsley James Estes !bilene Grotto, NSS THAT STINKING CAVE ............ ........ ....... 85 By Tom Warden, Texarkana GUTHRIE CAVE, TEXAS ........................... 86 By Jim Estes CAVE BRAIN .................................... 87 By Bro. Marvin F. Sanneman S.M. ASTROLOGY FOR CAVERS .......................... 88 By Jacque Gray N E W S ..... 88 DID YOU KNOW THAT? ............................. 88 DOBB Is CAVE' TEXAS ............................ 89 By Jim Estes COVER Abilene caver Bart Crisman kneels near Pool in White Spear A special photography trip was made in September, 1969. Thi s photo was taken by George Gray (Panatomic X, MSb) changed for protective purposes THE T.E:Xi1S ASSJClil.TIUN is an organi z ation of caving and speleological clubs and chapters of the National Speleo logical Society in the State of Texas. The purposes and aims of the TSA are similar to those of the National Speleological Society, to promote the exploration and study of caves in the state of Texas, and promote fellowship among the members. OF'FICEB.S (1969 ) of the TSA are: CHiUill-';AN .... VICE CHrdRHAN SECH.ET AHY -TllliAslJitER P 0 Box 4563, TT Lubbock, Texas .A. Richard Smith David Merideth Suzanne i'liley Station 79409 BASIC RULES FUR CAVE CONS1RVATlUN 1 -Collecting or in any way damaging formations is prohibited. 2 Caves should not be littered with refuse of any kind. 3 Cave walls are not to be desecrated with smoke writing, signs, or arrows. 4 -All used carbide will be carried ou t of the cave, buried, o r p laced in a trash receptacle. 5 -Archeological sites should be left to skilled archeologists. 6 Cave fauna (anim als) should not b e disturbed or collected unless yo u are associated w ith a particular scientific endeavor. TAh.E NOTHING BUT PlCTLJrili::i, NOTHING l:lUT FOOTPiU.NTS ... "To preserve caves in their natural state, we must have a mutual concern for c ave conservation. --R. de Sausseure


THE TEXAS CAVER August, 1969 Page 85 THAT STINKING CAVE While the Texarkana Cavers have doubled the number of known caves in the non-limestone parts of Arkansas and Texas, these caves are not Golondrinas or Bustamantes. All are dirty little crawlways that are hardly more than straight tunnels with no formations or pits. Still, they are found in an area where no caves were thought to have existed. But to find these caves, the Texarkana Cavers have had to search out every crossroad and hamlet around. All cavers know the looks and comments received when we ask about caves. In addition, we have to sift through the false l eads and tricks to get at the truth. On August 10, 1969, Bob Dillon,Gary Caller Bob Hay and Tom Warden set out toward Mineral Springs, Arkansas in hopes of finding a cave that Bob Dillon had heard about from a friend. The friend had said that a man b y the name of JackS., (name withheld on request) had taken h im by boat up Mine Creek to go to a cave a t the water's edge. He said that he did not go in because it looked too unsafe. As they were leaving Dillon's house, they passed by the house of a neighbor. In the yard stood a fountain statue that was a copy of the one in Brussels of the Prince who was lost then found. The statue was formed exactly in the p osition that the prince stood when found. Well . this statue was like that and water was pouring from it. Dillon was heard to mutter, "That crazy woman is always doing something nutty ... They did not realize it at the time, but this was a hint of what was to come. All had a good laugh and they drove on, unknowing. Just south of Mineral Springs, they passed throu g h the town of Tollette, Arkansas. Thinking of the statue, they really had a good laugh and passed on, not knowing that fate was actually "Tolletting" on them. In Mineral Springs, they stopped at the Tom Warden first filling station to ask for the house of Jack S. There they talked to a local by the name of Hite who said he knew all about t he cave. He then directed them back to Tollette where Jack S. lived. Before they left, he told them something of the legend of Mine Creek. Surprisingly, it was an exact copy of J. Frank Dobie's story of the Jim Bowie mine near Menard Texas, Spaniards, Indian slaves, silver mine and all. How odd that the same story should exist in such widely separated localities. Although there were two vehicles at Jack S. 's home, they had to knock and to knock to arouse him. Finally, he came around the corner of the house clad in iust a pair of blue jeans. When they explained their mission and asked about the cave, he appeared puzzled. He seemed to know of no cave that had an opening. He said that he had never taken anyone up Mine Creek in a boat. He said that he had heard of the cave but that it was closed except for an underwater entrance. Right there, although the visitors did not know it, Jack S. was inviting them into his family. During the conversation, Jack S. mentioned that he was an amateur archeologist. He liked to dig in Indian mounds for the artifacts that he might find. He said that he had a barn full Pressed for details about the cave, Jack S. finally, reluctantly, it seemed, gave them directions to the cave on Mine Creek. These directions had all of the details of the standard country directions: the rickety bridge; the turnoff on a logging road by the second abandoned house; the other turnoff which you might miss; and on and on. It was a wonder he did not include that classic: "Turn left by a brindle cow a cud in her jaw ... Not too impressed with these directions, the caveis returned to the filling station in


Page 86 August, 1969 Mineral Springs to get better ones from Hite. He was all too willing to help them out; in fact, he was glad to lead them to the turnoff from the main road,in his pickup. They quickly realized, however, that his name should have been High, for he was ... very. Still lacking better leads, they followed. He drove from Mineral Springs toward Nashville, Arkansas, and stopped b y a sandy road that led off to the right from the highway. Hite said that they should follow this road about halfwa y to Mine Cree k and walk the rest of the way Th e y looked at the road and sighed a collective sigh. Just off the highway, the road passed through a pond that might not have risen over the bumper of the Nova, and then passed over a bridg e so wobbly that a sneeze would shake it down. Realizing that they weren't going to go that wa y Hite led them onward to a house by the side of Mine Creek. The landowner, appearing disgusted with Hite, told them to cross the highway bridge over Mine Creek and follow his pasture road as far as it would go, and then walk to the cave, supposed to be in a high bank on the west side of the creek. Only on this c ommon point had Jack S. and Hite agreed. Leaving Hite sitting on the landowner's front porch, grinning at them and winking at the landowner, they drove along the creek as far as they could and got out to walk the rest of the way. Trudging down the creekbed, dodging pools of clear water and a thin trickle of wetness that mirrored the dry summer, they scared up a copperhead and a water moccasin "as big as your leg." After the snakes, the others were willing to give the lead to Warden,who was more anxious to find some signs of a cave than care about "crawler-biters". Walking somewhat ahead of the rest, Warden saw before him a raft, or jumble of logs and limbs, that completely blocked the creekbed. As he approached the raft, he noticed a fetid odor while through the limbs he could see a large amount of water in a connecting creek. Realizing what he was about to.come to, he stopped and turne d about. "Well, fellows," he said, "Looks like this is the end of our search." "What's the matter?" At his request, they approached and looked over the raft at the blackened water beyond. "Sewage!" "That's right," Warden said. Nashville, Arkansas probably dumps raw sewage in this creek. Anyone for diving into this to find an underwcte r entrance of a cave?" There were no takers, so they tur ned around t o begin the walk back to the car. "Mi ght not have been a cave there anyway," Dillon said. "Sure," Caller answered, "But we had to find out." "Hey, Gary," Dillon a sked, "What if Jack S. had gon e up Mine Creek in a boat and lost his paddle?" "Yeah," Caller grinned back. "he would have been up Mine Creek without a paddle." As they gained the highway and turned on the air conditioner to dispell the heat, Warden spoke. "Considering the treatment we got here and at Tollette, maybe we ought to drive over Pisgah, Arkansas. Reckon we would.get something over there?" "You mean get something put over on us!" Hay said. GUTHRIE CAVE Guthrie Cave is one of those small, ding y little caves located on the Edward's Plateau. It's depth is not over 30 feet, however the p o tential of the area arouses some serious afterthoughts after visiting it. Cavers Bryant Lilly, and Jim Estes visite d the cave about two years ago, finding its entrance in the middle of a very shallow header on top of the Edwards County high country. The drop to the slightly sloping floor was only six feet, and the brush and heavy vines that prac tically covered the four-foot circular opening made entry rather difficult. The typical cave of the area, Guthrie was filled with goat skulls, bones, dried guano and leaves and brush, a numerous amount of small debris that washed into the entrance, and som e larger breakdown at the far right side of the oval entrance room. Scattered among the breakdown are severa l holes large enough for explorers to squiggle down into lower levels. These levels are com plex, but a few minutes spent checking around enable a caver to memorize them. The lowes t level, flat, and covered with damp black silt allows the caver to crawl some distance in either direction (about NW-SE) The southeast ern area goes about fifty feet, but soon de creases in ceiling height. The whole cave resembles the upper portio n of Deep Cave, Texas, without being quite s o large, and without the bottom dropping out, of course. Who knows? Beneath all that Guano and silt, there may be another bottom. AVAILABLE: BOUND VOLUMES OF THE TEXAS CAVER, 1968 The Texas Caver, P. 0. Box 143, Abilene, Texas 79604


THE TEXAS CAVER August, 1969 CAVE BRAIN Page 87 17. A dark and light banded thin stalactite sheet of calcite. Bro. Marvin F. Sanneman 5. M. 20. This is found in an ice cave 21. First two letters of another name for a shelter cave 23. An amateur speleologist. DOWN: 1. A crystalline form of calcium carbonate. 2. The state in which Meramec Caverns is located. 3. It spreade out and holds fast. 4. A crack. 5. Both a verb and a noun and used in all rope work. 7. Ceiling collapse. 8. A calcite bubble is a form of calcite concretion. 9. and strikes are connec-ted with sedimentary deposits. 12. A sound of surprise or pain. 14. Compass direction of a line at right angles to the dip in a sedimentary deposit. 15. An exclamation. 16. Found in great quantities in many southwestern caves. 17. The first two letters o f a Reprinted from Hondo Rescue Newsletter, Vol II, bedding plane N o 3. 1. Narrow vertical shaft .in rock. 6 Used to rappel. 10. Mechanical wearing away of cave passages. 11. A carbide lamp is not a 13. To cross a rock wall laterally. 14. Another name for a palette. 16. The name for an NSS group. 1 8 First two letters of a pillar in a cave. 19. Blowing cold air in the sum mer time tells one that a cave is 22. II Belay". (Answer to crossword in September Texas Caver ) Next month the Texas Caver will feature the 1st of two installments on a fantastic story of cave exploring, Mexican style, by Mexicans. Look for the second installment in the October issue!


Page 88 August, 1969 THE TEXAS CAVER Astrology For Cavers LEO: July 24 -August 23 Symbo l The lion Sig n of the Ruler Now here we find the person who is destined to b e "El Lider". He has a flair for politics and loves doing thing s in a big way He is a nat ural leader who feels instinctively that his plac e in life is one of authority and organization. There are several positions open for the Leo-"Cave-master" or leader of a caving group, chairman of a Grotto, Regional Project Chai rman, or Chairman of TSA and in time, he will probably occupy all o f them. News SAN ANTONIO Several trips were made during the month of July by many San Antonio Grottoers. On July 6, Steve Tracy, Mike Lambert, Mike Reynolds, Ron Bridgeman, and Roger Bartholomew went to Cascade Caverns to ask Mr. Brummett about a cave lead. The lead didn't turn out to be a cave, but. Brummett directed them to Cascade Sinkhole. A total of almost 1,000 feet of cave was explored before the group, wet and tired, turned back. One noticeable sign in the cave was an old one that read: "St. Mary's Groto." On the 12 of July Robert Henry, Bartholomew and Jim Normand visited Stowers Cave for an exploration trip. The group began in the Water Jar Room and checked the northeast wall for any leads. Then the Swiss Cheese Maze to the south east of the room was entered by both and all areas were checked for leads, but none were found. On July 13, Bartholomew, Russell went with the Alamo Grotto to Fair Hole Cave. The owner took us to the cave and witnessed our rapelling in the entrance. The Alamo Grotto members who accompanied us were David Litsinger, Charles Burns, Butch Summar, and others. The cave is a water passage about 1,000 feet long or longer, the n drops off into a 30-foot pit. Russell and Bartho lomew survey the pit and beyond for about 100 feet in breakdown. Several leads should be ch e ck e d in this cave. The original Bexar Coun t y Surve y state s a 67-foot drop to the water, but our survey only shows 49 feet. Bridge man, Henry and Burney went to Cas-cade Caverns on July 16 and visited the siphon area. Scuba divers were also in the cave at the time to explore the siphon, but the water was quite murky, and no passage was found. On the 18, 19, and 20 of July Burney, Henry, and Bartholomew made a trip to Terrell Co. to check additional leads. A report on this appeared in the Texas Caver, July, 1969. Grotto address: Mrs. Emma Normand and/or Jim Normand, 166 Lark Avenue, San Antonio, Texas, 78228. Did you know that ... There are over 1,700 caves in the State of Texas? There are a reported number of active spelunkers in Texas each year in excess of 300? The highest described cave in the state is on the near-top of Mount Emory, Big Bend National Park at an elevation of about 7,000 feet? The County in Texas having the largest number of reported caves is San Saba? The Devil's Sinkhole is Texas most famous cave? Powell's Cave is Texas longest cave, at over 10 miles? The cave with the longest name must surely be: Oreiente Milestone Molasses Bat Cave? Or mayb e : Elizabeth's Cable Ladder Picture Cave No. 1? The cave with the largest surveyed volume is a cave in Val Verde County--Fern Cave? The highest attendance at any TSA Project was in 1965 at Deep Cave when 112 registered? That Texas probably has the largest area of potential caves, including the Edwards Plateau a n d Northwest Texas gypsum area and West Texas moun tains? The Edward's Plateau is as large as the State o f Massachusetts? Texas has a law against cave vandalisation? It is unlawful to kill bats in Texas? Texas deepest cave is Langtry Lead Cave? Texas cavers hosted an NSS national c onventio n in New Braunfels in 1964? It takes 60 man-hours to put out l C a ver i ssue?


THE TEXAS CAVER August, 1969 For a number of years since the mid-1950's Dobb s Cave had remained only a name on a cavers list of leads. Stories of its extent, and its description lingered in the minds of a few so intently that in the summer of 1966, an investigation of the area where it was supposed to be located got underway. Prior to that July lOth weekend, cavers De\.;ayne Dickey, Jim Estes, Jon Vinson, Jack Smith, and Tom Meador had already checked the ranc h and the owner had directed them to a cave located by foot some one and one-quarter miles along a fence line. Thinking this was Dobb's Cave the party soon found it t o be a small cave they dubbed Lowell's Cave instead. Another attempt to find Dobb's Cave was made by both Estes and Meador a year or so later, however, flash floods in the ranch area had washed out the road up the canyon, and the owner was too busy repairing water gaps to take the cavers where the cave was. Then the trip of July lOth, 1966. Bart Crisman, Estes, Don Winkles, and Bryant and B l anche Lilly made the trip that found Dobb's. The owner lived about twenty miles away f rom the area where the cave was located, and so both Crisman and Estes went over to obtain permission. Meanwhile the others were shown a cave by the owner of the land that had to be crossed before arriving at the Dobb's land. T h e n the two returned, they found no trace of the other three. They were supposed to have met the m at noon. About an hour later, they limped up to the gate, saying that they had been shown a nice little cave, and that the owner had been quite surprised that such a little hole would have as large a cave beneath it. With the directions to Dobb's the party set out on foot, for the owner had forgotten to give them a key to the gate. About a mile and a hal up a dim road, they spied a hole in a bluff to the left. Dobbs? They hoped so. It (See cave map on Page 90) Page 89 dobbs cave texas Jim Estes was about the right place eccording to directions. It was Dobb's The entrance to the cave was six feet high, and about eight feet wide, From this entrance, the cave extends as a tunnel for about 60 feet, then widened to about fifteen feet and sloped downward at a shallow angle. At the wider area a short tunnel 25 feet long extended to the right, but ended. 25 feet further a small hand-and-knee crawl extended 30 feet to a parallel passage to the main passage. The main passage extended another 50 feet where it made a junction with three other rooms. This Junction Room was 30 feet in diameter \vith a ceding of 15 feet in height. An opening from the Junction Room extended to the left and intersected with the smaller parallel passage. Continuing along the main passage the cave goes for another SO feet then a large room 40 feet in diameter is reached This room, the Mud Room, contained some guano, mud, and a small pool on the left side. By skirting the mud and water, explorers found that they were able to continue another 100 ft. to 150 feet to a double crawhvay which finally got too small to negotiate. The parallel passage extends as a dec orated passage for about half the distance of the main passage, hmvever it was small and complex. Other than this and a few small dome rooms along the parallel passage, there appeared to be only two other small crawlways leading from the upper right of the Junction Room. With about 900 feet of cave explored, it was time to leave the cave. A trip was planned to return to map the cave, check it further, and also the cave located by the three cavers earlier in the day. Dobb's Cave was finally located. Though it was a disappointment in relation to its good rumors, still it was another cave, interesting and fun to explore, that was added to the long and growing list of Texas' thousands.


Page 90 D 0 B B I s c A v E Edwards Co, Texas (Sketch) PRINTED MATTER ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED August, 1969 THE TEXAS CAVE! DOUBLE CRAWL Total length 900 feet Explored July 10, 1966 Bart Crisman Jim Estes Don Winkl .es Bryant & Blanche Lilly

Contents: That
stinking cave / Tom Warden, Texarkana --
Guthrie Cave, Texas / Jim Estes --
Cave brain / Bro. Marvin F. Sanneman S.M. --
Astrology for cavers / Jacque Gray --
News --
Did you know that? --
Dobb's Cave, Texas / Jim Estes.


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