The Texas Caver

The Texas Caver

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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: Editorial / Glenn Darilek -- New cave club -- Rancher relations / Bill Russell -- Your cave and you [revised] -- Real de Catorce / Mike Walsh -- Map of Real of Catorce -- Crunch! -- Rabies prevention / Phil Winkler -- Belaying techniques / John Graves -- The folding camera / James Jasek -- TSA cave rescue project -- Rapp line -- Caver's first aid notes, part I / David Faz -- Award to Bill Elliott -- Write a frenchman a letter / Chuck Stuehm -- Mammoth Cave: now longest in the world / Phil Winkler -- Cave divers -- The super caver syndrome / Chuck Stuehm -- Trips.
Open Access - Permission by Publisher
Original Version:
Vol. 18, no. 01 (1973)
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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K26-04568 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.4568 ( USFLDC Handle )
11302 ( karstportal - original NodeID )
0040-4233 ( ISSN )

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COVER: Young Paul Da.:rilek (age 2) at training session. Photo by Vincent Orozco with a twin l ens reflex, Yashica Mat 124G u s ing Plus-X 120 film at f/8, 1/30 sec, film processed in Microdol-X. The TEXAS CAVER is a monthly publication of the Texas Speleological Association, an internal organization of the National Speleological Society and is published in San Antonio, Texas. Material should be typed double spaced and sent to the Editor, Glenn Da.rilek, at 11929 Grapevine, San Antonio Texas 78228, no later than the first of the month of publication. Subscriptions are $4. 00 per year for 12 issues and all subscriptions should be sent to James Jasek at 1218 Melrose, Waco, Texas 76710 Persons subscribing after the first of the year will receive all back is sues for that year Single copies are available at 40f each postage paid anywhere i n the U.S. STAFF Karen Clement Steve Fleming John Graves Scott Harden Chuck Stuehm M ike Walsh Phil Winkler Glenn Da.rilek, Editor Ruth Da.rilek The TEXAS CAVER VOLUME XVIII, NUMBER I * * * * * * EXCHANGERS: Address copies to 11929 Grapevine, San Antonio, Texas 78228 PAGE 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1 0 11 12 13 14 CONTENTS EDITORIAL by Glenn Da.rilek NEW CAVE CLUB RANCHER RELATIONS by Bill Russell YOUR CAVE AND YOU Revised REAL de CA TORCE by Mike Walsh MAP OF REAL de CATORCE CRUNCH! RABIES PREVENTION by Phil Winkler BELAYING TECHNIQUES by John Graves THE FOLDING CAMERA by James Jasek TSA CAVE RESCUE PROJECT RAPP LINE CAVER'S FIRST AID NOTES, PART I by David Faz AWARD TO BILL ELLIOTT WRITE A FRENCHMAN A LETTER by Chuck Stuehm MAMMOTH CAVE: NOW LONGEST IN THE WORLD by Phil Winkler CAVE DIVERS 15 THE SUPER CAVER SYNDROME by Chuck Stuehm 16 TRIPS >): * * f. >): >:c OFFICERS OF THE TEXAS SPELEOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION FOR 1973 ARE: Chairman---------------Ronnie Feiseler Vi c e Chairman-----------Neal Morris Secretary-Treasurer-----Mrs. Jerry Lindsey


The TEXAS CAVER. January 1973 Page 3 This year the Alamo A rea Chapter, with myself as editor, will publish the TEXAS CAVER. We are confident that we can do an excellent job. I have the backing and help of our entire grotto; and we realize that there is much at stake for both the TEXAS CAVER and our grotto. We need help from you and the TSA. Our goals for this year are s irnple but precise. We intend to put out one quality issue each month. The contents of each issue will depend on you. We will not make the TEXAS CAVER an AAC publication, in fact, articles submitted by other groups or persons will be given preferential treatment. In the end, the TEXAS CAVER's sucess will be your success. Your remaining is sues of the 1972 TEXAS CA VERwill be corning as soon as Mike Moody finishes them, but we must get started on the new TEXAS CAVER. We will need renewal subscriptions and new subscriptions to continue. Please send your $ 4 00 for your one year's subsc i'iption to JAMES JASEK, 1218 MELROSE, WACO, TEXAS 76710, and urge all other cavers to do the same. This year will be a c r itic a l year for the TEXAS CAVER. Something must be done to reassure the subscribers that their subscription fee will produce what they deserve. The situation may be improved drastically by the TSA. At the last Board of Governors meeting it was decided that the TSA will adopt an official publication a n d in this way have some control over that publication. It follows that if the TSA will have power over this publication, it must share in the responsibility involved. The TEXAS CAVER has long been the vehicle of information concerning activities of the TSA. It is now proposed that the TEXAS CAVER be adopted as the official publication of the TSA. This official sanction will guarantee a regular and good quality publication. The new address for the TEXAS CAVER is 11929 Grapevine, San Antonio, Texas 78228, so let's start the material coming in. Glenn Darilek, Editor Alamo Area Chapter


Page 4 The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 Rancher Relations Bill Russell Any Texas cave r is soon aware that there is someone between him and the cave--the landowner. Texas has very little public land; most caves are on pnvate property, and unlike much land in the southeastern states where large corporations care little who visits their caves, Texas ranchers feel very strongly that they should control who goes on their land. This is due to several factors. First, and probably most important, they feel that it is their land and if anyone wants to use it they should ask. Second, the large investment in cattle and equipment is jepordized by anyone on the land especially city people who don't know what they are doing. And third they fear legal liability for those injured on their land. There is no secret formula that will get the caver into all caves; ranchers are people and some people don't get along with anybody, but the following suggestions will turn most ranchers from sullen adversaries into eager informants. Most important is to know the rancher personally--become his friend. The best method is to arrange to visit the rancher several times, if only to chat. A trip should have several alternate objectives so that the first contact with a rancher is low pressure. When cavers ask the rancher if they can visit his cave, the rancher will frequently reply: "Its too muddy", "Its lambing time", "The grass is too dry", "I don't have time now". The cavers should then say, "Yes, we understand, and we will come back later.", then talk awhile and leave for a cave they know they can visit. After several pleasant contacts with the same people, the rancher feels he knows the cavers and they seem to be reasonable people. Once a rancher is convinced cavers are good people, he will not only show them many caves on his land but will usually remember caves on a neighbor's ranch. When cavers can tell a rancher "Your neighbor told us about a cave near the Big Creek Windmill" it is almost a certainty they will be able to visit the cave. Small groups of cavers should specialize in the caves of the area, going from rancher to rancher. These small groups working in a local area will be relatively well protected from the adverse effects of the blunders that are given enough cave trips. When cavers drive over a rancher's plastic pipe they are still friends, not strangers from the city. But with a little thought most incidents of this kind can be prevented. When on a rancher's land follow the usual rules: leave gates as you find them, be very careful of fire, don't use guns, leave your dog at home, don't drive across crops or fields (especially wet fields), and in general, be cautious. Drive slowly and think. When the rancher discovers caver ruts cutting across his landing strip he will not be too happy.


The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 Page 5 The obvious generation gap is b eginning to close. Ranchers have now r ealized that people with long hair are still people but ranchers can't b e expecte d to welcome people on their land who behave in ways they don't approve of. Many cavers need to realize it is n o t hypocrisy, but courtesy to b ehave as the wants. In the case of frequently visited caves, the same small group should visit the rancher on each trip--and if there is to be a large group, c avers known to the rancher should arrange the trip in advance. When new groups v.ant to visit the cave they should accompany a group of cavers known to the rancher. As much as possible a grotto should adopt a rancher and coordinate all trips to that ranch, much as the Dallas -Ft. Worth Grotto arranges Powell's Cave trips. All cavers should encourage and respect arrangements. And a final note--don't promise to bring the rancher a map and photographs, but do it anyway. Boy Scouts present a problem as scoutmasters want the entire troop to visit a cave, and this is generally not a good idea. A large group worries the rancher and is especially hard to supervise--caving requires individual supervision. When non-caver groups are taken on a cave trip, cavers, frequently become merely guides and lose their position of leadership. This is especially true with youth groups; scouts don't look to cavers for approval and thus want to perform great feats to win the admiration of other scouts. If scouts want to cave, they should be taken 2 or 3 at a time. Caves are for individuals, not groups. By respecting the ranchers feelings and getting to know them as friends, most problems can be overcome, but remember that most hunters pay good money to use a ranch and cavers need to justify their free use of the land. Cavers, sportsmen, and rancher should cooperate to work for a law releasing land owners from liability. ... ,,. ... ,. "YOUR CAVE AND YOU" Revised -. ., At the TSA Convention last April, those present at the BOG meeting voted to up date and reprint the pamphlet "Your Cave and You". This was a "hand out" that could be given to land owners when visiting their ranch in order to create good will and peaceful relations with him and to impress l..'pon him that the hole he has on his property isn't just someplace to dump his trash. The Alamo Grotto updated the information about emergencies with the new rescue phone number, added a couple of pictures, and had it printed. These pamphlets will be available to all grotto's at the January BOG meeting. So make sure someone from your organization will be present to get their share.


Page 6 The TEXAS CAVER. January 1973 Real de Catorc e Cavers are not like the average citizen of the United States in that when they think of Mexico they think of the jungles of the El Abra or the pine forests of Ahuacatlan and San Francisco. Ask any non-caver and he will tell you that Mexico is one big desert. Both television and the movies put forth this idea. The dry, semi-desert areas of Mexico have long been overlooked by most cavers as a source of new caves. The area around Matehuala, San Luis Potosi has produced several caves of interest in recent years. The area is known as the Great Matehualan Desert. Several extensive gypsum caves have been found near the city. Twelve miles to the northeast there is a limestone out-cropping surrounded by gypsum. Cueva de la Virgin is located in this out-cropping. It was explored and mapped in 1968 by members of the Southwest Texas Grotto to a depth of 545 feet. The length is just over 1800 feet. However, this article is mainly concerned with the area to the northwest of M a t ehuala known as Real de Catorce. In the early 1900 s the town of Real de Catorce was one of the most prosperous By Mike Walsh in northern Mexico. Today, the town of 40,000 stands virtually deserted. Only around 500 people now live in this once-great city The train no longer winds its way up the hill to the village. The street cars a r e gon e and the great silver mines which created this city are largely shut down. At the head of the valley a deserted fort stands guard ove r the g host town. The drive through the deserted village at the foot of the hills has an odd effect upon the visitor. It is easy to imagine what the village w a s like i n its prime The main road goes up the hill towards the Santa Anna mine


LA CUEVA-MINA DEL REAL DE CATORCE Central Plateau Municipio de Real de Catorce, S.L.P., Mexico Brunton & Tape Survey, September 3, 1 972 by S Fleming, K. Heuss, T Stettler, M Walsh Drafted December 3, 1972 by S. Fleming, K Heuss, SWTG, AMCS 10 20 30 40 50 meters [lfTRI.KE LIIIU &.!!( P 4 U .6Gl WAL U r :: )


The TEXAS CAVER, January 197 3 Page 7 To reach Catorce itself, it is necessary to drive through the two and a half kilometer long Obregbn tunnel. The wooden beams and rock walls of the tunnel remind visitors that tunnels are not a.s stable as caves. Once through the tunnel the main part of Real de Catorce is reached. The old churches and cobblestone streets are pure "movie Mexico". On a recent 'trip we ran into an American mine engineer. He said that there wa's good limestone both to the north and the south of the village but there was littl.e in the. immediate area. He arranged a trip into the sixty kilometer long Santa Anna mine We had been told that they had hit a small cave at the. 108 meter leveL To reach the cave it was necessary to descend a wooden ladder, down a 200 meter shaft. The cave, at the 108 meter level, turned out to be merely a fissure with a few forrnations. We had seen a large hole running unde r the road to the mine and toward a large arroyo behind the mine compound. All of the locals which we had questioned stated that it was an old mine. The entrance of what turned out to be a cave was 11 meters in diameter. The first 100 meters is developed in a conglomerate limestone. The size of the passage rapidly shrinks as the solid limestone is reached. The 4 meter in diameter passage upward and to the south for approximately 300 meters before making any significant turn. At this point the passage slightly larger. Several shafts from the Santa Anna mine intersect the ceiling of the main passage. Nea:( a large breakdown slope a partially man-made tunnel intersects the main pas sage. This tunnel makes loop toward the upper entrance of the cave. Fro1n several pipes in this loop, th' e SaQta Anna is drained of various waste nl.aterials. The waste flows into the inain.passage and exits at the lower entrance. A small skylight is contained in the loop passage and opens into the restricted grounds of the Santa Anna mine. The large arroyo at the uprer end of the cave drains the surrounding mountains. Exploration in this area has not been extensive and much work needs to be done in the Real de Catorce area. * * * * CRUNCH! This summer Blake Harrison, President of the Southwest Texas Grotto, and several members took Blake 1s van to thel972 NSS convention in White Salmon, Washington. In Idaho they stopped in one ot'the National Forests to remove a burning log from the road. While doing this, a large crash was heard and a 240 pound boulder was seen inspecting the right front of his van. Fortunately no one was hurt. At the first SWTG meeting in September, several friends from Austin showed up with a boulder with green paint on one side. They had searched the woods and found the boulder while on the way home from the convention. ll. --


The CAV E.& 1973 llil II I N'l,l () N Must c avers ar:! aware c f lhe t!ar.ge1 i11here.nt t r cav ir1g of e x t o ba.t s (No:: to mention cavers: ) 1.1any may re.:...n.,;;"uhn reading something aoout rc..bies shots-dreadful thiugs in the belly; Most however, rec;J the articles a n d then forgot all about it. Thi s a r ticle is to :remind you and to tell you what to do about it. While it's t:rue tba: n0 caver has ever been K NOWN to b.av e ::on rabies whHe caving it has been proyen thru. research don e by the Disease Research Center in Ga. that a signi:t'icant percentage of cavers(who cave in bai: caves or who ha7e) show in:::reased s Brum r abies titers. A titer is a m.easure of the body1s antibody the introduction of a foreign substance to it. Thi s response increases in potency. 'as the exposure is prolonged or to the strength of the exposure-a Therefore, the higher the measurable titer the more c a ver' has had to rabies containing material, suc h as guano or bat urine usually in guano and known to carry rabies. Sinc e of yo'l.i can remember wading thru or being up to your armpits in guano you should see that the risk o f exposure is great and that prophylaxis is desirable 'l'he protlrqlattic treatrr.ent consists of three subcutaneous injections o f lee of imrnune. duck etnbryo per week for three weeks. (1 per week) Followed by a booster after 5 or 6 months. This \ovill raise your bodies resistance to rabies to a point that if you are exposed a booster shot is all that would be necessary rather tha.n the usual series of 1 per day for 14 days! The severity of the disease is not to be reckoned with considering the fact that only one person in medical history has been known to have been cured after he was d i a gnosed as having rabies. Doctors who treated 9 yr old Matt Winkler o f St. Loius, Mo. are still not sure why their treatment was successful but he has apparently not suffered any ill effects from having had the d isease. If. you think you have been exposed by being bitten by a bat which seems to be unhealthy make every effort to recover it so that it may be examined by medical authorities. This may not preclude the initiation of the rabies shot series but it could curtailit if the bat was proven not to have had rabies. The prophylactic immwlization is simple to take and is usually available free f r 0 m your l ocal public health service. It does provide you with the 3ecurity of knowing that you are safe from contracting rabies i.f Gx:posed. P hiJ. NS S 13627


The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 Page 9 .. ll Yl r rc; '1, II N I CIIJ S I will briefly outline a n article on belaying techniques taken from Mountain Safefy Research. There are three main types of belay used. They are: l. Munter Friction Hitch, 2. Sticht Belay Link, 3. Sitting Hip Belay. The Munter Hitch is s hown in figure #l. The carabiner should be connected to a good secure anchor. Nex t best, to the seat harness if the belayer is secure. The rope can be passed b o t h in and out through the hitch readily pruvided the rope isn't too stiff and isn't 3-st rand twisted (this rules out Goldline). The hitch inverts on change of direction. At the time of a fall, the belayer grips the free end of the rope with the gloved h and to accomplish up to say 500-700 lbs. of restraint on the climbers end of the rope. Wear on the rope for single falls is negligible. The Sticht Belay Link is also an effective way of absorbing the energy of a fall. The climbing rope is doubled and pushed through the elongated hole in the .Sticht. A carabiner is snapped into the loop of the rope and attached to an anchor point or the belayer's seat harness. Fig. 2a. Passing the rope in and out is easy, much easier than when using a hip belay. Note that the hands must be close together to avoid moving the Sticht close to the carabiner. When holding a fall, the gloved control h and is moved away from the rope going to the falling climber. The Sticht then snaps into contact with the carabiner. This method will provide a restraint o f 400-900 lbs. depending on the size of the rope, roughness of the rope, and the restraint of the belayer1s hand. The Sitting Hip Belay is a commonly used belay. The belayer sits in the best socket possible and is preferably anchored also. The climbing rope passes around his hips. When a fall comes, the control hand on the free end of the rope is moved across the front of the body to increase the angle of wrap, and then (at least in theory) the control hand tightens on the rope. Resent tests show only a peak restraint of 300-400 lbs. and belayer's collapsing with pain with a force of only 32 5 lbs. to climher Fig,2a spare rope Fig,2b to anchor or body harness control hand moves back Fig.J


Page 10 The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 THE Foldin g Ca1nera The folding camera i s pretty much a thing of t he> p ast, and as each day goes by they are getting m o r e difficult to locate. S u what-you may say to yourself. This camera makes o n e of thP. best cave cameras that you can own. It is light weight, compa.;t rugged, and inexpensive. Besides all these features it will pr)duce pictures that will rival the most expensive 35mm camera. This is no loose talk as I can back it up with a folding camera that cu;, zz1e $1:>. The secret lies with the larger negative. Instead of u sing the min a ture negative of a 35mm camera, you are able to work with a negative that is f our times larger. The larger negative will enable you to use high s peed film like Tri-X and produce pictures that will knock your eye out. Where do you find such a camera? Your own relatives or grandparents may have one of these fine old cameras hidden away i n an attic or closet shelf. If this fails, your local pawn shop may have one. T hey u sed to b e plentiful in pawn shops, but over the past few years they hav e really bee n hard to locate but your effort will be well worth the trouble. When you d o find a f olding camera, here are a few things to be on the look-out for. First make sure the shutter works by setting it at each shutter spee d and clicking the shutter. B e sure it opens and closes properly. Most of these cameras have a "B" setting for time exposures and some even have "T" for time that h olds t h e shutter open by itself. Set the shutter for B or T, open the back of the came r a and look thru the l ens. The lens should be perfectly clear. Old lenses hav e a tend ency t o f o g making the cam era useless for photography. Next check the bellow s f o r light leaks b y shining a flashlight through the back of the camera in a dark r oom. Light leaks will be very evident. Small light leaks can be plugged with a mixture of rubber cement and India Ink or lamp black. If the camera passed all these checks, now it is time to run a roll of film through the camera. This will show two things. One, that the lens is in proper focus and that a folding camera is really a fantastic camera. Good Luck! ,. BY JAMES JASEK ., .... , . . ... .... N U R D --Natural Underground Resource Destroyer. .,


The TEXAS CAVER. January 1973 Page 11 CAVE I ESCUE PROJECT ''A M .ESSAGE FROM YOUR CHAIRMAN11 Dear Fellow Cavers: When Luthor Bundrant resigned from his position as chairman of the TSA Rescue Com m ittee, Bill Elliott asked me if I would accept the respons for the ret>t of the t e r m I accepted the job as chairman of the TSA Cave Rescue Project. Since then, I have been working very close with Ch11ck Stuehm and mer:1bers o f the Alamo A rea Chapter to build up this project. The peopl e in San Ar..tonio will thr.: backbone and training for the TSA Cave Rescue Team. Togethe t w e have plans to educate the members of the 'l"'SA through a series of articles that will appear in. the TEXAS CAVER every month. The articles will give i.nformation. on suc h topics as Cave Safety, Rescue Procedures, First--Aid, etc. To further bac:k up this education program we plan to have o u r first practice cave r escue this coming J anua1y 13 & 14 i n the San Antonio area. This will be a simple cav e rescue. All interested people should contact Chuck Stueh m at 3 4 5 E Hutchin1.1 Pl. San Antonio, 'l'exas 78ZZ 1 immediately. There r.hou!d be 2 or 3 p e o p.lte: f :ro m your grotto at this practice session. We need to know h o. many pe:opl e wi.ll interested and will come. Please plan to be there. The success of the p ractice ses s i.on will depend on your support. Want to know something about First Aid? Got a question on safety procedures for cavers? Curious about what responsible cavers should do? Like to know more about cave rescue techniques? Well, ask Rapp Line and your TSA Safety and Rescue chairman will answer your questions or write an article to answer your request. Cavers that are aware of .good safety practices and know first aid skills are less apt to have accidents. Those that know how difficult cave rescue is might be a little more careful while caving in some of our more dangerous caves. Send your questions or requests for articles to: Texas Cave Rescue Program 354 E. Hutchins San Antonio, Texas 78221 or give them to Chuck Stuehm in San Antonio or James Jasek in Waco. Remember the old proverb "Seeking knowledge is a questionable practice".


Page 12 The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 Cavers' Firat Aid Notes PART 1 Cavers have more near-accidents than there are caves! This seems to be a. !)retty broad statement, but what does it say about us cavers? Are caver 1 s unafraid? -are cavers brave? -or are we really uninformed as to the hazards present and what to do about them? It seems for the most part, that we are all three. Cavers, as a group are a most adventurous people but, in general, they are not overly safety conscious as they should be. What can we do about it, you ask? That is what this article is all about. It will present to you a logical and clear general method of First-Aid which will cover most of the accidents with which you will be presented. To define First-Aid we say it is the immediate and temporary aid given to a victim at the scene of an accident prior to the arrival of or delivery to the care of a physician. NOTE that this is only temporary care and is not curative in nature since that is an ability beyond most cavers. The most imp> rtant part of first-aid is the actions that prevent accidents from happening through good safe practices. By preventing accidents we insure that more cavers will cave and by being prepared to administer First-Aid we will save more cavers from cave-gods. Having been safety conscious and having done all possible to prevent accidents, an accident does happen--what do we do first? The four like saving steps are Breathing, Bleeding, Treating for shock, by mouth. That is to say: first we make sure that the patient is breathing; then we move to stop any major bleeding; then we treat for shock; and last we make sure that the patient is aot poisoned. Having insured that the patient is functioning, we can treat all the extern"-1 wouDds: Broken bones, gashes, burns, and possible transportation. In transportation, it is always best not to move but if movement is necessary it should all be done in one well planned move and properly splinted. This will necessitate a lot of good planning to insure a smooth effective move. FIRST-AID is immediate and temporary. The order of treatment is breathing, bleeding, shock, and poison by mouth. In transporting, do not move unless you have to and only move if you have splints. Next month we will approach the back-board and its uses. By David Faz


The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 Page 13 Award lo Bill Elliott The 11Ralph W. Stone Graduate Research Award11 was awarded to William R Elliott this year at the N.S. S. convention. There were nine proposals received for consideration for the award. Two were for biological and the other seven were for geological-geographic studies. William R. Elliott, Department of Biology, Texas Tech U n i versity, proposed a paper on zoogeography of the Invertebrate Cave Fauna of Northern Mexico. The committee had decided that Bill should receive the award because his study had the greatest depth, scope and synthetic implications. The decision was difficult to reach because seven of the applications were judged to be of very high quality. TSA and the Texas Caver say--Congratulations Bill, we know that you spent a lot of time and a lot of hard work. * * * * Write a Frenchman a Letter Chuck Stuehm Want to write a letter to one of the Frenchmen who were a t Midnight Cave last year? Well, here are their addresses. I thought that some o you might want t o send a card or a bomb or something. How about an extra good snapshot you took or an article on caving or something you think they might like? M. Jacques Chabert 39 Rue Grande 77 Barbizon, France or 4 7 Rue De La Sablie re Paris 14 Cme, France Gerard Cappa 29 Au Primerose 06 Nice, France M. Philippe Englende r 126 Boulevard Gambetta 06 Nice, France Jean-Pierre Maison 35 BP Carabacel 06 Nice, France M. Michel Siffre 34 Square St. Etienne 06 Nice, France M. Bernard Laplaud Mas De La Surverse Les Condamines 06 Nice, 02 E, France Mlle. Marie-Ange Babinet 5 Quai De La Republique 94 Saint Maurice, France M. Michel The ron 17Ave. Jean-Jauris Dakar, Senegai Africa M Raymond Valente H. L. M. G orbella BD Comte De Falicon 06 Nice, France


Page 14 The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 llammoth fSave I Now Longest In The World A recent break thru by 7 intrepid cavers has linked the flint Ridge cave system with Mammoth Cave in Kentucky giving a total explored distance of 145 miles Dr. John Wilcox NSS 12969(R) of Columbus, Ohio announced December 1st that he and Patricia Crowther NSS 13238(FDR) and 5 other cavers whose names and NSS affiliations were not mentioned had discovered a 6000 ft. passage linking the two cave systems. The actual discovery was made September 9th but was not announced until further surveying and mapping could be finished. Dr. Wilcox had entered a large room in which he noticed a handrail affixed to the far wall which had obvioualy been placed for the convienience of tourists. Dr. Wilcox realized that he had made the link with Mammoth Cave that has been sought for 18 years so the excitement that he conveyed to his collegues is easily understood. The actual clue that made these 7 cavers know that they were close to a link with Mammoth came when Pat Crowther discovered the initial "H" and an arrow scratched in the wall. The arrow was pointing in the direction in which they were going and usually points the way out of a cave. They figure the initial is that of Peter Hanson who was very active in exploring the Mammoth Cave system thru 1937-1942. This discovery now makes the Mammoth Cave system the largest in the world. Phil Winkler NSS 13627 * * * * * Cave Divers, stand up and be counted. Those of you that have had some experience in cave diving are needed in our Cave Rescue Program. If we find that we have enough people, we will hold a training session this coming spring. Send the following information to Chuck Stuehm: l. Name, address, home phone, work phone. 2. Amount of cave diving experience. 3. Amount of diving experience. 4 List of equipment and other gear that you have. 5 Number of tanks at your disposal (filled). 6. Are you experienced eno.1gh to teach cave diving'r 7. Do you have a buddy to dive with? 8. List training and organizatioo.s you belong to.


The TEXAS CAVER January 1973 Page 15 The Syndrome by Chuck Stuehm Do you have the "Super Caver" syndrome? Which is to ask, "Have you joined the elite circle of cavers that look down on the more ordinary person who just likes caving for caving's sake"? Will you only associate with "Deep Pit Cave rs 11, or just those who are able to contribute something very special to speleology or those who participate in certain activities or types of activities? Have you forgotten what it is like to be a NEW caver? I have noticed that there are some people who, after reach-ing a certain level of understanding, and developing a.certain degree of skills, meeting and getting to know the "Big Cavers" on a first name basis, are suddenly quite cool and distant to new cavers. They forget that someone took their time to teach them their first skills of rapelling and climbing. They forget that someone wanted them to know about good cave conservation and good landowner relations. They forget that someone took them on their first cave trip and how much that first trip meant to them. It's very.hard to remember how many people were involved in helping them to become the "Super Caver" that they are now. How many times have you gone caving lately without taking someone new with you? How often have you really trained a new caver? And how long has it been since you have sat down with someone who is really interested in caving and tried to inspire them with good caving practices and the science of speleology? How about a new and different national campaign to be started by you? You could call it "Take a new caver on a caving trip this month'' or "Take a new caver to Mexico next trip". I'm not advocating beating the bushes to get people interested in caving. I'm saying, when someone new comes to your grotto meeting and is already caving, you could get his or her phone number and give them a call when you plan to go caving and invite them to come along with you. Take a New Caver caving this week! ! P. S. Yes, Virginia, there are a few people who want you to enjoy caving! P. P. S. Remember the old proverb "a good caver wants other cavers to be good cave rs, too".


Page 16 The TEXAS CAVER. January 1973 DATE: July 1-2, 19 72 DESTINATION: River Styx PERSONNEL: Steve Fleming, Mike Walsh, Larry Armstrong, Matt Farrar, John Graves, Stan Moerbe REPORTED BY: Steve Fleming Leaving Friday night, we arrived at Mike's parents house about midnight. The next morning we drove the remaining 160 Kilometers to the cave. After a cold, wet trip and a few minutes spent digging our way out of a different entrance, we drove back t o Clyde. DATE: July 8-9, 197 2 DESTINATION: Pozo de Ga vilan PERSONNEL: Steve Fleming, Glenn .Dl.rilek, Matt and Susie Farrar, John Graves, Scott Wayne Russell REPORTED BY: Steve Fleming We all headed for Pozo de Gavilan and were impressed with the pit. Rigging our Blue Water we rappelled 87 meters, of which 61 meters is free. At the bottom is a large lake into which we launched a raft to check the part which went back under the cliff. On the way back to the U.S. Matt wrecked his new 4-wd when he hit a VW bus in the mountains. Nobody was hurt but Matt was fined ZOO pesos at the Jefe's office in Linares. with no more incidents we rolled into San Antonio at 2:00 AM Monday morning. DATE: August 5-6, 1972 DESTINATION: Huasteca Canyon PERSONNEL; Steve Fleming, Glenn .Dl.rilek, Scott Harden, Tom Stettler REPORTED BY: Steve Fleming We made the trip to Huasteca mainly because we had not been there before. We made fast trips through the north and south San Bartolo caves and then went the turista route for Horsetail Falls and Grutas de Villa Garcia before going through Cueva de la Boca. We were very impressed with the size of la Boca. There is a possible lead in Huasteca Canyon directly across the canyon from the San Bartolo caves but as of now it has not been checked.


The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 DATE: August 12-13, 1972 DESTINATION: Hidalgo, Iturbide, Aramberri PERSONNEL: Steve Fleming, Mike WalSh, Glenn Da.rilek REPORTED BY: Steve Fleming Page i'f The p urpose o f thi s trip was to check three "turist a c a ves Mike had pre v iously l e a rned about. As it turned out, none were for t urista types. The cave at Hidalgo p r o ved t o b e a one room affair with a diameter of approximately 8 m eter s and a height of 3 meters Heading south we checked the largestof the three caves. The cave is about 6 kilometers from the town of Iturbide and is a scenic hike through a large pine forest. Passage is horizontal and runs for approximately 200 mete r s and containa a small colony of vampire bats. The last cave was a t Aramberri, a small town 240 kilomet e r s north of SLP and consisted of one b i g r oom about 25 meters in diameter and 8 meters high. Each of these cave s need mapping and a trip will soon be made t o accomplish t his. DATE: S eptember 1 1972 DESTINATION: Elm S pring Cav e PERSONNEL : Steve Flemi n g Sandi Luker REPORTED B Y : Stev e Fle ming Sandi and I went down to San A n t onio t o finish mapping this cave a n d to s e e i f the air was s till bad on the lower l e vels. After mapping about an hour w e rigged the 26 meter drop and rappelled 13 meters to a small ledge where w e agai n c hecked t h e quality o f t h e air, I t was still on the good side so Sandi elected to b o unce bottom since he had n e v e r been in the cave before. At the bottom of the drop San d i reported that the air was extremely bad so we i mmediately climbed out, From past experience we have decided that there is b a d air at varying l evels i n the cave thr o ughout the summer months. DATE: September 2-4, 1 972 DESTINATION: Mateh u a l a and Real de Catorce PERSONNEL: S teve Fle m ing, Mike Walsh, Tom Stettler, Keith Heuss REPORTED B Y: Steve Fleming Heading for Matehuala for the Lab o r Day weekend we went through Reynosa with no trouble. We checked and mapped two caves, one at Real de Catorce which went under the mountain to exit at an upper entrance and had several mine shafts intersecting. In the Santa Anna Mine we decended 108 meters on wooden ladders t o check s o m e small domes opened by blasting. In Matehuala we mapped about 210 meter s of a n estima ted kilome t e r passage. The cave h a s several connec t i n g gypsum sinks from w hich a small stream resurged and ran the entire leng t h of the s ystem. Before leaving we located the e n trance to La Cueva d e l a Virgin. R eturning Monday we agreed it was a very goo d trip.


Page 18 The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 DATE: September 15, 16 and 17, 1972 DESTINATION: Mexico (Monterrey Area) PERSONNEL: Jacques Chabert, Gerard Cappa, Jean-Pierre Maison, Logan McNatt, Peter Strickland and Chuck Stuehm REPORTED BY: Chuck Stuehm After Michel Siffre emerged from Midnight Cave on September 5th, Peter and Logan spent 2 weeks at the camp tearing it down and bringing tons and tons of gear and equipment down from that hill with Peter's truck. By the time they were finished everyone w a s read y for a mini-vacation. So we took off for Laredo and points south. After a 3 hour wait at the border, due to thousand's of people eros sing for the "Dies Y Seis11 celebrations, we headed for Bustamante. We met Scott Harden and friend at the parking l o t and later joined up with Wayne Russell a n d friend. The Frenchmen really enjoyed G ruta de Palmeto and took many pictures. We crashed at a campsite in Bustamante Canyon and the next morning took a good swim in the cold river W e headed for Monterrey, took in Horsetail Falls and Cueva de Boca, which was uneventful except to one young woman, who slipped on a slippery rock, fell, bashed her face, and knocked herself unconsious. She finally came to and walked away. From there we headed for Plaza Hidalgo and Cafe Flores, which is a good place to eat in Monterrey. It's clean and you can get a 4 course meal, plus a drink, for 12 pesos with n o "Turistas". We did a little shopping and headed for Espinazo and Cueva de Constantine. Traveling the Espinazo "Turnpike" i s a l o t better since the government bulldozed a road into the town. But we came t o a wash-out and had to detour through the brush and got stuck in a mudhole anyway. We took an hour getting my station wagon out and the Frenchmen must have taken a hundred pictures. I think they get their film free, because Gerard and Jean-Pierre, they must have taken 50 or 60 rolls of 35mm film on thi s trip. Everytime you heard a clicking sound one of them had his camera u p t o his eyeball. After a 4 hour search for the cave the g roup came back to the car without finding it. They were looking in the wrong c anyon. We left for home and sta y e d Monday at Midnight Cave. We all wished we had had more t ime to take in some better caves but had to be satisfied with the Turista11 bit. You should have been in Cafe Flores with us as Jacques was talking Spanish, English, and French and changing back and forth so fast he began mixing them all together. Which reminds me of the old proverb "If you must talk in three languages at once, keep it clean''.


The TEXAS CAVER, January 1973 DATE: October 29, 1972 DESTINATION: Canyon Dam Training Session PERSONNE!.J Chuck Stuehm, Larry Westbrook, Ralph Gerhardt, Vince Orozco, Steve Fleming, and others REPORTED BY: Larry Westbrook Page 19 The purpose of this trip was for training and practic:e of rope climbing techniques. Being my first time rapelling the 80 foot drop, I really did not see any fun in the sport. In fact the word caver was defined to me as anyone who is abnormal, confused, and plain CRAZY. I fell into that category after my second time down. After the session we shared the usual dose of BS. DATE: November 23-26, 1972 DESTINATION: Sotano de las Golondrinas PERSONNEL: 11 from SWTG, 3 AAC, 1 from Alabama, 1 from UT REPORT ED BY: Steve Fleming D.lring the Thanksgiving holidays 15 people from SWTG and AAC went to Golondrinas. After 18 hours of driving we arrived in Aquismon and began the 7 mile hike. The last stragglers got to the pit Thursday night and the next morning we rigged the drop. The first person entered at 11:00 and the next 7 hours were spent getting eleven people down. Four of the party entered the lower section and went down to the 1600 foot level. A remeasurement of the drop was made with a device left by the Frenchmen and 332 meters was recorded. Eight climbe d out in the dark with an average time of 1 hour 20 minutes, while the remaining 3 slept on the bottom. Leaving the area Saturday we hiked back to Aquismon. It had been raining and the trail was extremely muddy and slippery. Most of the hikers took several falls with one of the girls breaking her arm at the wrist. The trip went smoothly and with no problems except for the broken arm. * * * * * Word has just come in from the Laredo Speleological Society that they have found the deep pit in the Carrizal area that may turn out to be o ver 100 meters deep. More information will be coming in the February Texas caver.


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Contents: Editorial /
Glenn Darilek --
New cave club --
Rancher relations / Bill Russell --
Your cave and you [revised] --
Real de Catorce / Mike Walsh --
Map of Real of Catorce --
Crunch! --
Rabies prevention / Phil Winkler --
Belaying techniques / John Graves --
The folding camera / James Jasek --
TSA cave rescue project --
Rapp line --
Caver's first aid notes, part I / David Faz --
Award to Bill Elliott --
Write a frenchman a letter / Chuck Stuehm --
Mammoth Cave: now longest in the world / Phil Winkler --
Cave divers --
The super caver syndrome / Chuck Stuehm --


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