The Texas Caver

The Texas Caver

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The Texas Caver
Series Title:
The Texas Caver
Texas Speleological Association
Texas Speleological Association
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Subjects / Keywords:
Regional Speleology ( local )
Technical Speleology ( local )
serial ( sobekcm )
United States


General Note:
Contents: Austin Cave rescue / C. Bittinger -- Texas caver costs / J. Reece -- Winter TSA BOG / C. Biegert -- Financial report / J. Reece -- Lost Maples Cave / G. Veni -- Caving near Valles / P. Sprouse -- Trip reports -- Caves of Mexico / T. Raines -- Mexico News / D. Pate.
Open Access - Permission by Publisher
Original Version:
Vol. 33, no. 02 (1988)
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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K26-04674 ( USFLDC DOI )
k26.4674 ( USFLDC Handle )
11408 ( karstportal - original NodeID )
0040-4233 ( ISSN )

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* 'k 'I' l:HE TEXAS CAVER Apri11988 J


THE TEXAS CAVER VOLUME 33, NO. 2 APRIL 1988 CONTENTS Austin Cave Rescue (C. Bittinger) ....... 35 Texas Caver Costs (J. Reece) ............... 36 Winter TSABog (C. Biegert) ............... 37 Finacial Report (J. Reece) .................... 38 Lost Maples Caves (G. Veni) ................ 39 Caving Near Valles (P. Sprouse) .......... .40 Trip Reports ......................................... .45 Caves of Mexico (T. Raines) ................ 47 Mexico News (D. Pate) ........................ 50 ALTERNATING EDITORS This issue Next issue Dale Pate Jay Jorden P.O. Box 1251 Austin, Texas 78767 ph. 512-452-5184 1518 Devon Circle Dallas, Texas 75217 ph. 214-398-9272 wk. 214-220-2022 AUSTIN STAFF Computer assistance Erika Heinen Texas Caver labels RodGoke Texas Caver distribution Johanna Reece Printed by Kestrel Printing Austin, Texas CAVE RESCUE--CALL COLLECT 512-686-0234 34 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 Short Editorial The Texas Caver is proud to honor Wi iam Russell by printing this issue's cover. Williar has been a guiding force in his efforts to save Austin tves and to make the general public more aware of th fine caves found in this area. He has worked vith developers, city evironmentalists, new young c ; ers, neighborhood groups, and spent untold 1urs documenting Austin's caves. His efforts have 1een appreciated by many. Thanks William! The Texas Caver is a bi-monthly publication of the exas Speleological Association (TSA), an internal organizatio 1 1 f the National Speleological Society (NSS). It is publi s : d in February, April, June, August, October, and December Subscription rates are $10/year for 6 issues of The Texas mr. This includes a $4 fee for membership in the TSA. Out c s tate subscribers, libraries, and other institutions can recei\' The Texas Caver for $6/year. Send all correspondence (otlv then material for The Texas Caver), subscriptions, and s to: The Texas Caver, P.O Box 8026 Austin, Texas 78713. The Texas Caver openly invites all cavers to submit artid trip reports, photographs (35 mm slides or any size black & ,vh i t e print on glossy paper) cave maps, news events, cartoons, ;Jd/or any other caving related material for publication. Copyright 1988 Texas Speleological Association Front Cover.--Following the rescue of five kids from an Austin area cave, Bill Russell's co-worker's

AUSTIN CAVE RESCUE by Craig Bittinger It w a s another dull Thursday night. James Bond was o n T.V. Just as the beautiful blonde slipped out of h e r skimpy outfit and started to kiss James the phone rang It was the sheriff's department looking for W illiam Russell. They said they had a rescue situation with some boys lost in Maple Run Cave I called Willia m a t Katie Arens' house and he came right over. W e quickly grabbedourcaving gear and headedforthe cave. I t wa s about 8 :30pm. As we got closer to the cave, we spotted a r escue vehicle with flashing lights zooming along. We follo\\'cd them and quickly reached the scene. Lights, rescue workers, law enforcement officers, TV crews, newspap e r reporters, neighbors, and distraught p a rents s tood around the entrance in the cold One crying a nd somewhat hysterical mother asked if we were cave explorers. She was assured that we were and she said, "Thank God! Bring me back my son! Willia m talked to the sheriff who knew him from previou s rescues. He gave a radio to take into the c a v e and then we entered. It quickly became apparent that with around 100 people on the surface, no one had entered the cave inorc t h a n a few feet. After about 30 feet the radio lost contact with the surface. We proceeded down the crawl way which led out of the first small room. At the next p l a c e large enough to stand up in, we found the boys c o ats. This was the first real sign that they were actually in the cave. (Ed's note-their bicycles were found a t the entrance). The next 15 feet was a muddy crawlwa y that led to another room large enough to standup in. We could hear the boys voices coming up through the breakdown. As they heard us approaching, their first question was "Are you p olic e men coming to arrest us?" William quickly reassured them that we were cavers corning to rescue them William crawled down a small pit and began to hel p the boys climb up. They were shaking with cold and seemed to be in the first stages of hypothermia. The boys thought that the rocks had shifted and that was why they couldn't find their way out. The fiv e boys had one flashlight with the lens covered in mud They said the light was dim when they crawled in and finally got too dim to see anything The boys main concern w a s all the trouble t hey would be in once they got home They asked us if we thought they could sneak out and get home with no o ne noticing them We told them th a t they were g oing t o be too famous to get into too much trouble and tha t their parents were waitin g for th e m on the surfa c e William and I gav e them each a l i ght. T h e colder boys were given our long sleeved shirt s t o warm them up, and we headed for the surface. Willi a m was in the lead followed by a long train of five boys while I brought up the rear Upon arriving at the entrance room the boys left the cave first and returned to the surface into the glare of TV cameras. The b oys had been in the cave for about 4 hours. Great cheer s went up as they were joyfully reunited with the i r parents. William and I exited last. The Fire Department used crow bars to lever large rocks over the entrance in order to prevent a re-occuren c e of this event. William spoke on the 10 o'clock news and again at 5 pm the next day. He used this opportunity to inform the public tha t caves are not a danger ou s place. He also pushed the idea of creating cav e p ar ks where caves were g a ted and groups of kids could safely go caving with experienced leadership. In retrospect, the boys did several things right. They told their friends where they were going They left their bicycles at the entrance and they stuck together when they knew they were lost. They also did some things wrong They did not have 3 sources of light each. They did not have adult leadership They had also enter the cave with the intent to bring out stalactites. If they had spent too many more hours in the cave, they would have had some problems with hypothermia. This incident points out the necessity of (CAVE RESCUE-Continued on p a ge 44) The T exas Cav e r Apri/198 8 35


WHAT IS THE TEXAS CAVER COSTING US? by Johanna Reece 1985 1986 1987 Total Membership dues 2319.00 2550.00 2648.00* 7517.00 T.C. CQsts 2254.51 1998.95 2732.25 6985.71 includes $100 donation for Oct. 1987 issue. Comments The comparison of 3 years (18 issues) of dues to expenses show that approximately $9.30 of the $10.00 membership fee goes to printing and mailing the Texas Caver each year. Eighteen issues have cost $6985.00; this is an average of $388.00 per issue, or $2,328.00 per year. In 1987, costs for the Caver were $2,732.00 . A $350.00 per issue allottment to cover printing and mailing comes to $2,100.00 per year to cover costs. With our membership dues averaging $2,470.00 annually, $8.50 of each $10.00 goes to the Caver if we stay within our allottment. To date, the membership consists of about 210 Texas members, 40 family members, 43 exchange and free issues, 12 libraries and 45 out-of-state subscriptions. The money we receive comes from 4 categories of memberships. If costs increase at the same current rate as is shown in 1987, our funds may be depleted in 4 to 5 years. Dale and I have been monitoring the exchange and free issues, deleting the inactive ones. We are now Source Reg. members 210 10.00 2100.00 Family members 40 4.00 160.00 Out of state mems. 45 6.00 270.00 Libraries 12 6.00 72.00 Exchanges & free 43 0 0 Total 350 2342.00 36 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 having only 500 copies printed at $10.00 per page $12.00 for half-tones. In the past, 600 to 700 copid of the Caver were being printed at a cost of $12 .00 pe1 page and $16.00 for half-tones. Our mailing costs haw remained the same. Options I. Stay within the current allottment, with any overruns to be paid by donations. ll. Within the current budget, increase the allottrnen for the Texas Caver in order to cover actual costs, witl a reduction in capital available for other uses. ill. Decrease the current allottment for the Texa: Caver, making an increase in capital available forothe uses. This could be achieved by reducing the printin: quality or number of pages. IV. Increase TSA funds by: A. Increasing library and out-of-stat1 subscription price to $8.00 to closer reflect the Caver' actual costs. B. Raise regular membership dues. C. Increase our actual membership. D. Increase dog fees to $20.00 each .. B a cookie bake sale .. Hot tub user fee memberships .. V. Choose to ignore this until next year.


MINUTES OF THE TSA B.O.G. January 31, 1988 Submitted by Carolyn M. Biegert Secretary of the TSA The January 31, 1988 meeting of the TSA oard of Governors was called to order by Chairman ack Ralph at 10:10 am in the assembly room at ascade Caverns near Boerne, Texas Minutes of the all 1987 meeting were approved as read by cclamation. Treasurer's Report: Johanna Reece reported a ta lance of $2,452.00, an increase of $941.00 since the 987 Old Timer's Reunion. Approximately $500 of his was transferred from a San Marcos TSA account. REPORTS CON SERVATION COMMITfEE: Scott Rote was named Chairman of the Conservation Committee since he is also Texas Parks and Wildlife liason. Linda i Palit was appointed co-chair of this committee by Jack IRa! ph. LOGO COMMITTEE: Jay Jorden reported a balance o f $373. 66 in the logo fund. New patches have been ordered and will be available at the TSA Spring Convention. Cost was 60 each for 100 patches. $300.00 is available forT-shirts. John Spence moved that the TSA match this money to print extra shirts. Discussion was not in favor of John's motion, so it was withdrawn. Jay's committee is to price T-shirts, order them and set a price which will allow a small profit on sales. PUBLICA TTON COMMITTEE: According to Mike Walsh, there are no more copies ofT exas Cave Humor. Cost of printing more copies will be investigated by Johanna Reece and Mike Walsh. Mike also suggested that copies of Texas Cave Humor and My Mommy Was a Caver be kept by the Publications Chairman. Since no money has been received from Joe Mustin for NSS books, Jay Jorden suggested that this debt ($159. 90) to TSA be carried on the books as an accounts receiveable. Johanna reported that it is. OLD BUSINESS Johanna Reece reported that in response to a request for a summary ofT exas Caver costs, she had determined the per issue cost averaged $381.67 over the last 3 1/2 years (20 issues). This is approximately $32 over the budge of $350 per issue. Linda Palit suggested that we acknowledge this amount to be fairly close to the budget. George Veni suggested that authors of maps, which can be expensive, be asked to help pay for their publication as a way of staying closer to The Texas Caver budget. Bill Elliott suggested we cut down on exchange issues to save money, but Jay Jorden, Bill Mixon, and Mike Walsh felt that they are useful and not that expensive Jay Jorden said the editors would try to stay closer to the budget. Jack Ralph pointed out that official appointment of The Texas Caver editors had been overlooked at the OTR. Jack asked that Jay Jorden and Dale Pate continue as co-editors. Jay accepted. Dale was not present. NEW BUSINESS Johanna Reece shared information sent by Evelyn Bradshaw that would help TSA to update address records and ensure delivery of The Texas Caver to those who have moved. By adding "Address Correction Requested, Forwarding and Return Postage Guaranteed" to the return address .and for a charge of 30 per issue returned or forwarder, the Post Office will provide this service. John Spence and Jay Jorden felt that this would be a great help to TSA bookkeeping. Bill Elliott moved that TSA make the necessary arrangements to have forwarding and return of The Texas Caver guaranteed by the Postal Service Jay Jorden seconded the motion. The motion The Texas Caver Apri/1988 37


passed. Bill Elliott moved that all exchange issues received by the TSA be placed in the TSA library. The motion was seconded and passed. Bill Elliott asked if anyone had or knew of a map of Powell's Cave for the TSS. He stated that negatives of maps and photos are valuable for reference and future publication. Bill moved that all negatives from each Texas Caver be kept in the TSA library. John Spence gave a second and the motion passed. Johanna Reece moved that the TSA donate extra copies of The Texas Caver to Texas Grottos for distribution to new members. John Spence seconded the motion. It was passed. John Spence pointed out that being editor of The Texas Caver is a thankless job with no pay for time and effort. He asked for a vote of confidence for the editors with applause. Jack Ralph asked that Sec. 1.1. 2 of the Constitution and By-laws be changed to make family memberships to TSA $14.00. Approval was by acclamation. It was suggested that nominations for new officers be made at the Spring Convention, but many wanted to be able to make additions at OTR. It was agreed to keep the nomination procedure the same. Jay Jorden asked that the committee to help Vice Chairman Joe Ivy with preparations for the Spring Convention be appointed. Joe reported that he already has a committee and that work is in progress. Tentative date for the convention which will be held in Uvalde is April 30-May 1. Info will be sent to The Texas Caver and possibly by a special mailing. ANNOUNCEMENTS George V eni reported that the Recharge Zone Committee in San Antonio has produced a 150 page report of issues with things for all entities involved in development to do to protect the Edwards Aquifer. Mike Walsh announced that the TCMA will host a National Symposium on Cave Management in Oct. 1989. Gorman Falls trips will continue every 2nd weekend of the month. Contact Butch Fralia in Ft. Worth at 817-346-2039 or Terry Holsinger at 81738 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 595-1406 for information on trips Thanks were given to Carl Ponebshek fOi catering at the winter TSA B.O.G. George Veni reported a successful project for the winter meeting. Twelve caves were surveyed, 8 completely and 4 still in progress, 600 meters were mapped, 20 known caves were located or relocated 9 new caves were found, and ?landowner contacts were made. The meeting was adjourned at 11:25 am. TSA Annual Financial Report Submitted by Johanna Reece FROM 1-24-87 TO 1-28-88 Bank Balance Petty Cash Logo Fund Bulk Mail Memberships Back Issues Logo Fund 2623.32 20.00 250.00 86.16 2979.48 CREDITS My Mommy Was A Caver Donations Interest on Account Adjustment Texas Caver TOTAL .......... DEBITS TSA Project Kickapoo Special Mailing-Cave Without A Name Safety & Rescue 2132.58 20.00 250.00 50.00 2452.58 2548.84 137.00 54.50 6.00 45.00 119.79 .19 2911.32 2732.25 66.23 122.42 Oregon Splint 140.00 V-Adjust.Rig 40.38 Rescue Sticker 50.00 B.C.I. Donation 50.00 NSS Pubs. Balance (Muston Account) 159.90 Sec-Treas. Costs 77.04 TOTAL ............. 3438.22 Net Decrease of $526.90.


MORE ON THE LOST MAPLES CAVES by George Veni I was interested to read Paul Fambro's article in the December' 87 Texas Caver on caves in the Lost Maples State Natural Area. I was part of the crew Chuck Stuehm led there in 1979 to search for caves for the park service. Chuck died in early 1980 and thus never wrote a report on what was found. In 1986 I heard there was renewed interest in the caves and karst of Lost Maples, so I wrote a report for the Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife to document what had already been done. I submitted the report in September '86, but Paul's trip was in May so he, of cou rse, didn't know the details I outlined about the 1979 investigation. In 1979, Chuck led members of the San Antonio Grotto and the Sierra Club on thorough tromps through the lost maples looking for caves. Only four caves were found: Cobal 's Cave and Can Creek Caves #1-3. Cobal's Cave is a spring Cabal's Cave Lost Maples State Park Bandera County, Texas Suunto & Tape SurTey; 3 April 1981, G. Vent @ along Can Creek which gets too small after 11 m. Paul's group found two of the three Can Creek Caves and describes them in his article. The third cave is almost identical to the others so its hard to say, without looking at the maps, which of the three he found. These caves are alluviated paleosprings which still seep a little bit of water into pools at their lower back ends. Several small pits were found on the ridge tops, in 1979, but none deep enough to qualify as caves according to the TSS standard of a minimum 15' of depth or 25' of length. Its possible we overlooked a hole or two during the project nine years ago, but the general geology discourages the development of any significant caves. If you happen to be caving in the area, your chances for good caves are much better a few miles to the north where notables like Station C Cave and Haby Salamander Cave exist. meters 0 2 3 PLAN ----,. PROFILE/ too small ;.;.;.;..;;;;;;;;:;;::,:\:r.....:----,-. -, -, -, x...__s -1 1 1 1 1 !!! 'll 1 @Copyright George Vent, I 1986 oo 55 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 39


CAVING NEAR VALLES by Peter Sprouse A green conure found in Sotano de Maldonado. (S. Lasko) In early 1987, a group of river-runners doing the Rio Santa Maria in San Luis Potosi reported finding a promising resurgence cave just upstream from the large waterfall at Tamul, north of the town of Aquismon. David Mckenzie had climbed up above a spring and found a dry overflow entrance With the aim of following up on this lead, Susie Lasko, Mary St a ndifer, and I headed south on 23 August 1987. By the next afternoon we were swimming in the waterfalls at Micos then we drove south along the Rio G a llinas toward where it plunged overTamul falls to the Santa Maria We camped in cane fields along the Gallinas, which is a beautiful, swiftly flowing stream 40 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 of clear blue water. The next day we met a loca resident, Miguel Maldonado, who agreed to g uide u to the falls. We threw a log across the river as a b1idgi and worked our way down the far bank. Soon the r i1 ( l disappeared into the precipice, obscured with mis1 Miguel pointed out the trail to the bottom and d e partec We scrambled down the steep route and emerged fror tall grass onto the riverbank of the Santa Maria. 1t w a then that we could see the full glory of the Cascad; Tamul. The Rio Gallinas arced out and fell 80 met(r to the river below, filling the canyon with a torrenl0 water and mist. A logjam formed on the Sant a Mmia pushed back upstream by the waterfall. We could sci


hy David and his companions had almost perished assing these falls in their rafts. All in all the cascada sa spec tacular sight, a must-see spot for the Valles area. By following the Rio Santa Maria upstream we eached the resurgence on the north bank. We'll refer o this as the Nacimiento de Tamul, for lack of any thc r name. The water gushes from a low arch at an s t imated rate of seven cubic meters per second aking entry there virtually impossible. We chopped rout e over the spring to get up to the higher, dry entrance. It sloped down and soon we found a lake, 'hic h judging by the roar of water ahead must surely b e the w a ter which emerges from the spring. Off of the entran ce room were several other entrances formed on the same dipping bed. At the lake we noticed the flow emanatin g from a sump on the left, and by wading into t we s oo n saw that the stream sank under boulders heading for the resurgence no doubt. Another stream c oming from straight ahead also sank there, and foll o wing this we found its source sumped also, or nearly. By going back up the dip to the right, we got jnto an upper level which eventually led to another .entrance, although we didn t carry the survey that far. The cave turned out to be 120 meters long and 10 meters deep. We hiked back to the truck and camped ; b y the river just as it got dark. The next morning we inflated the inner tubes a n d did some exciting runs down the Rio Gallinas. Som e o f the cascades were a bit questionable for inner t ubes, but we survived somehow. After lunch Miguel ret u rned and took us to a pit on his parcela, which we named Sotano de Maldonado in his honor. It is located across a wide grassy sink by the road that is dotted with p icturesque palms. The entrance was about 7 meters acros s a nd when we approached, a number of green conures flew out, the same type of parrots that live in Sotano de las Golondrinas The pit immediately belled out to a bout 40 meters wide with highly decorated walls. At 50 meters down Susie and I got off on a ledge, a n d werebelayeddown three more pitches of3, 13, and 7 meters. At the bottom of the rope we found ourselves at the top of a steep rubble slope. A couple of parrots m oped around on the floor, looking a bit soggy and u nhappy. We surveyed several shots downhill, passing a l a r g e flows tone mound on the left, and then reached a flat mud floor. Here the passage se emed to split. T o the left was a shallow pit with a lake at the bottom. This looked like it was probably a dead end. So we to o k the right-hand fork up a large crystalline mound. This led to a short climbdown and a terminu s Sotano de Maldonado wound up being 200 meters long a nd 114 meters deep. After wrapping up tha t surve y we drove on to the west to camp at the waterfalls of Tamasopo On the topogr aphic maps I h a d noticed a large sink to the west near Cardenas, so w e set o u t t o investigate that the next day. We w e re able to dri v e all the way to the village ofPasito de Fra ncisco locat e d o n the west side of the s i nk. A local t oo k us down into it where a good-sized stream ran into a promising ca ve entrance. Once inside, the way on became obscure, but I managed to squeeze down through some bould e r s to regain the stream. I turned b ack there, since I was only wearing huaraches for footwear. Our guide then took us to a low entrance which supposedly was explored by another group, whom it is said rea c hed a river. We The Texas Caver Apri/1988 41


SOTANO DE MALDONADO El Naranjito, San Luis Potosi, Mexico Suuntos and tape survey 28 August 1987 by Susan Lasko and Peter Sprouse Plotted by ELLIPSE Drafted by Peter Sprouse Length:200 meters Depth: 114 meters 42 The T exa s Caver Apri/1988 Projected profile: north view P50 Entrance 0 10 60 P13 80 100 114-meters m 20 30 meters




The Cascada de Tamul. (P. Sprouse) geared up to explore the straem cave, which we named Sumidero de Montezuma, after the man whose land it is on, Erminio Montezuma. The sumidero proved to be very complex, with several wet, parallel routes. Susie followed the main stream flow down a low muddy passage to where it sumped. I explored a side lead to a deep clear lake, which I traversed until swimming was necessary. I couldn't tell for sure if it went on or not. In all we didn't explore more than 500 meters of passage, but the cave may go since there was some airflow. But we declined on surveying it, which would be tedious. Erminio graciously allowed us to stay in an extra room in his house that night, which we gladly accepted since it was raining. Looking at the topo, we realized we hadn't gotten to the bottom of the huge 5 kilometer long sink. Sumidero de Montezuma was only a secondary sinkpoint partway down it. So Susie and I located the m in stream and followed it with some difficulty to 44 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 Peter Sprouse climbs out of Sotano de Maldonado (S. Lasko) where it sank in a mud and log fill. Perhaps ther e o nci was an entrance there before agricultural erosion fille 1 it in. Leaving that area, we headed back east towan Valles and tried to drive to Sotano de Infiemillo, b u the roads were too muddy. Out of time, we drov e bacl to Austin the next day. (CAVE RESCUE--Continued from page 35) cavers working with law enforcement-rescu agencies to help in this type of situation. The tot a l tim elapsed from the time the first phone call went out! a caver, to their arrival at the entrance was abo u tl minutes. The boys were safely out of the cave .1 another 30 minutes. This rapid response was a cruel factor in helping to keep this rescue from turnin g in! a tragedy.


REP o I [,_ Cueva de la Puente, San Luis Potosi, 25 December rersonnel: Allan Cobb, Joe Ivy, Linda Palit by: Joe Ivy We departed San Antonio at about 1 :00pm Christmas Day and reached our campsite near Cueva de Ia Puente the following afternoon. On the 27th, we awoke to beautiful weather and proceeded to debark on our first trip into Cueva de la Puente in search of rumore d "booty." The cave entrance is at the lower end of a do line approximately one mile long by a half mile wide with a rocky stream bed paving the way to the entrance. We headed into the cave and about a mile of walking passage later achieved our first objective: a near sump that was once the end of the cave. We ionned wetsuit tops and salamandered through the low air to find booming borehole on the other side. We for about 2500 more feet to where we found a waterfall drop. We had been told that the drop was about 30 feet deep by those who had scooped to this point. It seemed and sounded much deeper. We rigged a hundred foot rope in the pit. I dropped the pit to find the knot at the bottom about three feet off the floor! The drop was right at 100 feet. Linda and Allan joined me at the bottom and we headed down the passage thinking we were scooping major booty! About 100 meters downstream we encountered a very terminal sump with passage 3 meters in diameter continuing underwater-well underwater! We were somewhat depressed at the abrupt ending but pleas e d with our scoop when Allan noti ce d a piece of orange cord tied to a limestone rib on the wall-a perfect place for an end of survey flag! We h a d been scooped! Probably by Mexican cavers since they knew of the virgin pit also Even more bummed out than be fore we headed for camp. We reached camp at 10:00 pm only to find the driver's side window of my belo ve d To yo t a smashed into oblivion. Fearing the worst, we checked for what had been stolen. We could find n othing missing (a definite relief!) The next m orni ng a t 10:00 am, a small wom a n walked into camp carrying my hat! She explained that she h a d run into a man the previous afternoon who was wearing the h at. She knew there were no hats like that around and deducted that h e h a d stolen it from us. I thanke d her and we showed h e r the broken window. This caused her to become very up se t and the Spanish started flying in a rapid-fire sort of way. She explained that the man who h a d stolen my hat was bad crazy disliked, an d a host of other simi l ar euphemisms She also asked u s to l eave the mess of glass undisturbed so that she and her brother could go and get this bad person bring him to our camp a nd have him at least clean up the mess. We agreed. She returned the next morning with her brother. We talked Th e Texas Caver Apri/1988 45


briefly and her brother took off to get the bad person's father since the jerk had gone into SLP to work. She remained there so we chatted a bit and had lunch. At this point, we decided that she, Ambrosia, was probably the local witch or Shaman or something. Ambrosia is almost 40, unmarried, without any children, and commands much power in the area. Anyway, her brother returned with the jerk's father and the guilt trips were laid on plenty thick. That afternoon a local12-year old showed us a very pretty cave north of camp which flows with floodwater fed in by numerous large sinks in the ridge above the cave. The entrance was about 60 feet high by 30 feet wide and continually narrowed and lowered the further we went into the cave. It was about 200 feet long ending in a fairly large room with a colony of Mexican freetail bats in it. On the way back to camp, our guide showed us a few pits. The next day, we spent most of the day surveying the pits we had been shown. There was Sotano Que Lastima, dropped and sketched by Allan (11.6 meters deep), Sotano de Vidri Roto (a fissure 5 meters deep) dropped by myself and finally Sotano de Arana Grande which I dropped. It was 11.2 meters in depth with a very big spider at the bottom. That night, we shot off fireworks which attracted some local kids. At 9:00pm, sitting around the fire, Allan and I decided to survey a small cave which was located just downhill from our camp. Allan said it was about 80 feet long and would be a quick survey. The cave obviously took significant water during rains with the water disappearing into the breakdown floor. While I was sketching, Allan moved some rocks and opened up a pit of sorts that dropped down about 20 feet! We were real excited! We returned rninu tes later with a rope and vertical gear. Allan descended through the snug hole in the floor (about 2 1/2 feet in diameter) and reported that it looked like the passage pinched off and the inspiration was over. We decided to survey the pit and small room. Once I joined Allan, I noticed that beyond the pinch spot there was a small room which appeared to have a crawlway taking off. After using excessive deadly force, I made the tight spot big enough for Allan who squirmed downward to the small room with much complaining. Allan's complaining ceased abruptly and he said, "It goes!" Two very short belly crawls later we found ourselves in a dome room 25 ft. in diameter and 25 to 35 feet high with a canyon passage 46 The Texas Caver April 1988 extending off!!! With gladdened hearts and brisk airflow at our backs, we headed down the steepl y sloping passage. It averaged 25 feet high and 2-3 feet wide. It was formed along bedding plane s and maintained a 15-20 down hill slope. It was also very clean and scoured. We noticed (respectfully) bowling ball-sized stream cobbles lodged several feet above our heads (yikes!) After about 150 meters of this we turned around with carbide running low. The following day we packed and headed back t o the states. Letters to the Editor Deer Edit Tore, Ewe sword bee ass sham dove yore shel f four wart Yule its lip passenger watch full aye enter Deed Tacky Craver. Howl crude yawl pub lickerish ant arctic cull wit suck fragrant eras ass dud wand buy Nuance Waiver end tickled "SORE PRAISES ADD HORNY CRACK"! Eye chant bile eve debau chery oven Languish ingle wedge thatch Yule except. Daunt ewe real eyes statue harmonize tea replication oddl deed Craver wndow pub lickerish fragrant smelling eras? Tea pabulum wish tea art tickle fuzz y miss smelled wad "aardvaark", witch complains tom b any litter a's. Accordion toe Web steers Dick canary wear eye licked hiccup, tea pauper smelling sod a bin "aardvark". Dares know excursus fur dish kindle mess take endless error oven tie tack knowledge gee Deed Tacky Craver osprey paired own acorn pewter, is senate? Issued ruin hit threw egg smelling checkered Prague ram lick eyelid dish litter, yew wood fina l day smelling eras an smell perfect glee lick eye dew. Sin surly, Rob Goat JOINTHE TSA Send $10 to: The Texas Caver P.O. Box 8026 Austin, Texas 78713


The Caves of Mexico by Terry Raines When we first started documenting the caves of Mexico and listing their lengths and depths, two or three of u s cavers in Austin knew most of the statistics from personal experience Things have certainly changed, especially during the past few years. Cavers from at lea s t six countries are now actively exploring in Mexico and findin g extensive caves of both length and depth. Over the past year, I have been fortunate enough to ha v e joined several o f these groups underground, and to have conferred directly with the others concerning their explorations They enthusiastically share the results of their discoveries with us, and I have complied the statistics in the following tables. New data or corrections arrive several times a month and I amend the database immediately A s a new s ervice, the AMCS will provide the latest printout to anyone sending in $2 00 US to the address below A s a word of warning, these lists may be dangerous to your health . your mental health. They are not created to glorify c aving or inflate personal egos. They are created to document the progress of speleology in Mexico and promote quality surveying. Keep up the good work. 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 Order from: Association for Mexican Cave Studies P.O Box 7037 Austin, Texas 78713 USA Deep Pits of Mexico, 25 Aprill988 Locotlon El S6tf1Do de El Berro Queretero S6teno de les Golondrines sen Luis Potosi S6teno Tomese Kiehue Verecruz S6teno de Alhuestle, 2nd drop Pueble Sotenito de Ahuecet16n 2nd drop Queretero Resumidero del Pozo Blenco Jelisco Sisteme Dcotempe Pueble S6teno de los Plenos Pueble S6teno de Coetimindi Sen Luis Potosi S6teno de Sendero Sen Luis Potosi Hoye de les Guegues sen Luis Potosi S6teno de Soyete Sen Luis PotosI S6teno de Alpupuluce Verecruz S6teno de Puerto de los Lobos Sen Luis Potosi Hoye de le Luz SEID Luis Potosi Kijehi Shunthue inside drop 08X8C8 Nite Diplodicus 08XeC8 Ahuihui ztcepe Verecruz S6teno de 1 e Cuesta Sen Luis Potosi S6teno de Dtetes Temeulipes S6teno de los Monos Sen Luis Potosi El Socev6n Queretero Depth of Plt 410 376 330 329 288 233 221 220 219 217 202 195 190 189 188 188 170 180 174 171 171 171 The Te x as Ca ve r Apri/1988 47


Deep Caves of Mexico-6 May 1988 Rank Ca'ie Deo1h 1 Sisteme Hueutle Oexece 1353 2 Akemeti Pueble 1130 3 Sistema Ocotempe Pueble 1063 4 Sistema Cuicetece 0BXBCe 1038 5 Guizeni Ndie Guinjeo OBXBCB 954 6 Sonconge Oexece 945 7 Sistema Purificeci6n Temeulipes 895 8 Nite Cho OeXBCB 894 9 S6teno de Ague de Carrizo OeXBCB 836 10 S6teno de Trinidad Sen Luis Potosi 834 11 H35 Pueble 753 12 Sonyence 0BXBCe 745 13 Nite Xonge 0BXBCB 740 14 Vue Nite OBXBCB 704 15 Aztotempe Pueble 700 16 S6teno de los Plenos Pueble 694 17 S6teno de Tileco Queretaro 649 18 Nite Neshl OBXBCB 641 19 Cueva de Di emente Temeulipes 621 20 Nite He Oexece 594 21 Si steme Cuetzelen Pueble 587 22 S6teno de les Coyotes Guenejueto 581 23 S6teno Arribe Suyo Sen Luis Potosi 563 24 Rje Men Kijeo Oexece 552 25 S6teno de Rio lglesie Oexece 531 26 S6teno de Nogel Queretero 529 27 S6teno de Ahuihuitzcepe Verecruz 515 28 S6teno de les Golondrines Sen Luis Potosi 512 29 Hoye de les Conches Queretero 508 30 S6teno del Buque Queretero 506 31 Nite Cheki Oexece 493 32 Hoye de les Guegues Sen Luis PotosI 478 33 Cueve de Sen A gust In Oexece 461 34 El S6teno de El Berro Queretero 455 35 Hoye de Sen Miguel Guerrero 455 36 S6teno ltemo Verecruz 454 37 Cueve de Le Pefie Sen Luis Potosi 448 38 S6teno de Tlemeye Sen Luis Potosi 447 39 Osto de Puente Neturel Oexece 442 40 HU3-HU4 Pueble 430 41 Cueve dele Llorone Temeulipes 412 42 Cueve del Reefer Medness Sen Luis Potosi 411 43 S6teno de Alhuestle Pueble 409 44 Cueve Ten-go-jo Sen Luis Potosi 405 45 Kejohe Xuntue Oexece 400 48 The Texas Caver Apri/1988


Long Caves of Mexico-6 May 1988 EJmk... Calle Lat:a11an Length 1 Sistema Purificaci6n Tamaulipas 71600 2 Sistema Huautla Oaxaca 52110 3 Sistema Cuetzalan Puebla 22432 4 Coyalatl Puebla 19000 5 Cueva del Tecolote Tamaulipas 11084 6 Sistema Cuicateca Oaxaca 9180 7 Sumidero Santa Elena Puebla 7884 8 Cueva de la Pena Colorada Oaxaca 7793 9 Atepolihuit de San Miguel Puebla 7700 10 S6tano del Arroyo San Luis Potosi 7200 11 Actun Kaua Vucaten 6700 12 Sumidero de Jonotla Puebla 6381 13 S6tano de Las Calenturas Tamaulipas 6032 14 Gruta del Rio Chontalcoatlen Guerrero 5827 15 Gruta del Rio San Jeronimo Guerrero 5600 16 H35 Puebla 5500 17 Grutas de Juxt lahuaca Guerrero 5098 18 Veshtucoc Chiapas 4900 19 Cueva del Nacimiento del Rio San Antonio Oaxaca 4570 20 S6tano de la Tinaja San Luis Potosi 4502 21 S6tano de Japones San Luis Potosi 4500 22 Sistema Sah Andres Puebla 4471 23 S6tano del Rio Iglesia Oaxaca 4206 24 Sistema Zoqui a pan Puebla 4107 25 Sima del Borrego Guerrero 4087 26 Aztotempa Puebla 4000 27 Sumi dero San Bernardo Puebla 3931 28 Sumidero de Pecho Blanco No. 2 Chiapas 3790 29 S6tano de Ague de Carrizo Oaxaca 3748 30 Nita Nashi Oaxaca 3524 31 Cueva del Rio Jalpan Queretaro 3440 32 Akemati Puebla 3356 33 Actun Xpuki 1 Vucaten 3353 34 Cueva de la Laguna Verde Oaxaca 3350 35 Sumi dero Vochi b Chiapas 3316 36 Cueva de El Chorreadero Chiapas 3280 37 Resumidero La Joya Guerrero 3245 38 Cueva de la Llorona Tamaulipas 3136 39 Atepolihuit de Nauzontla Puebla 3066 40 S6tano de Tlamaya Sna Luis Potosi 3057 41 Sistema de Montecillos San Luis Potosi 3022 42 Resumidero de Toxin Jalisco 3005 43 S6tano de Huitzmolotitla San Luis Potosi 3002 44 Sumidero de Atliliakan Guerrero 3000 45 S6tano del Rio Coyomeapan Puebla 3000 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 49


MEXICO NEWS reported by Dale Pate This spring has seen a large number of cavers visiting Mexican caves and there has been several significant discoveries. The following is a brief ac count of some of those expeditions OAXACA A new cave, Cueva Cheve, was discovered in November 1986 to the south of Sistema Huautla by Carol Vesely and Bill Farr. Their last trip in December 1987 pushed the cave to a depth of 720 meters and it continued. Carol and Bill led a 2 1/2 week expedition back to Cueva Cheva this past March. A total of 15 cavers from the U.S. including Texans Bill Steele and Mark Minton participated A total of five kilometers were added to the survey bringing the length to 9.18 kilometers and the depth was pushed to 1,038 meters. The suspected resurgence is 15 kilometers away and 1400 meters lower. The cave has good potential to say the least. Thirty-four rope drops have been encountered so far. A number of other caves in the area have been discovered as well. The largest of these is Cueva de Puente de Natural which has been pushed to 450 meters in depth and continues. An upper entrance was tied into Cueva Cheve this march and it was decided to name this major system, Sistema Cuicateca, after the Indians who inhabit the area. Proyecto Papalo was recently formed to explore and survey the caves in this major new caving area. PUEBLA A spring expediton by Belgian cavers have netted a number of new caves and discoverys. A new upper entrance to Sotano de Ocatempo was tied in bringing it to a new depth of 1063 meters. A new cave was also discovered named Akemati that was pushed to 1130 meters in depth making it Mexico's 2nd deepest cave. Exploration ended in a maze section, but the cave continues with air flow. 50 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 TABASCO A team of cavers led by Jim Pisarowicz I returned to the Teapa area for six weeks of cave exploration this past spring. An expedition to thi s area last year produced a number of large caves and many meters of survey Shortly after arriving in the area, a major storm dropped approximately one meter of rai n on the area, flooding all the caves. Due to this rain, the expedition moved to the town of Tapijulapa where they began the survey of Cueva de Azufre, a str ange sulfer laden cave with a milky-white stream flowin g out of it. The survey had to be abandoned after realizing that everyone was being burned by moisture from the walls. Prelimanary tests concluded that the walls were very acidic having a pH of 1 Along about this time, the cavers just happened to stumble into the middle of local politics when a contender for Jefe accused his rival of taking kicks backs from the cavers, who he accused of lootin g the caves of Mayan treasures. An investigation b y the equivalent of the Mexican FBI concluded that they were innocent of the charges. In amoungst the political hassles, they met Peter Lord, a caver who lives in the area, and were convinced to move their operations to an area he had been working in near the town of Agua Blanca. The major cave Peter had been working in was Cueva de Agua Blanca which is a resurgenc e cave that had been explored for approximately four kilometers. The heavy rains had made this cave unenterable, but several large caves were discovered above it and it is hoped that they will tie in to the resurgence cave. Approximately 7 kilometer s of passage was surveyed in numerous caves durin g the expedition. TAMAULIPAS *An eight-day camp was set in Sistema Purificacion Mexico's longest surveyed cave during the month of March. Texans Jerry Atkinson, Allan Cobb, John Fogerty, JeffHorowitz, Susie Lasko, Dale Pate, and Peter Sprouse along with Dave Bunnell (California), Cyndie Walck (Missouri) and Scott Scriebner (Missouri) participated in this year's expedition. Camp I was utilized this year for the firs! time since 1985 The Confustion Tubes, a multi-level


maze, w ere a main focal point for this year s explorat ions Several day trips were spent in the eastern ar ea of the tubes where numerous loops were tied i n a n d some interesting discoverys were made. A m a j o r pa ssage which had been overlooked for num e r u s years was pushed just to the south of the Con fu)i o n Tubes past Frustration Lake where expl 1 1 t ion efforts had been stopped by cold water and no w e 'luits. This cold and very windy lead was large and l ded south and east for 300 meters before connc t ing into several holes in the floor of the Jersey Tum: 'ce Two teams also headed further south to the end c t h e Jersey Turnpike and pushed several leads there 8 ne lead ran parallel to the main passage for 300-r. ] meters. The other broke into several smaller tube s u t continued. A day trip was also taken to the westt p ortion of the Confustion Tubes to an area name Ithilien where numerous passages were mapJ a nd explored On an off day, an unexpected d iscc r y was made leading out of the D-survey, one of t h r ea s first explored many y ears ago. This high l e a d s pu s hed upward gaining o ver 100 meters in elevation and netting almost 2 kilometers of survey with good leads remaining. The entire area was dry and dusty, thus it was named Arrakis. In some areas whole sections of the walls hadjustcrumbledintopiles of gray dust. Gypsum and other unusual rninreals were present in large quantities in some passages. All in all, the expedition was a success. Approximately 4 kilometers of new passages were added to the total length bringing Sistema Purificacion's total to 71.6 kilometers. *Sheck Exley, noted cave diver, has continued his explorations in N aciamiento del Rio Mante as he continues to descend a vertical shaft which is totally immersed. He recently set a new world depth record for cave diving by descending approximate! y 230-240 meters vertically. The pit continues downward. Odds are that he will return. CI.'VEtS S!P..VlMG C1:l!lS,, 41-t -----==:::...:...::W:...::..::lSBURG, \l.VA. 2. 4-S 0 1 The Texas Caver Apri/1988 51


The Texas Caver P.O. Box 8026 Austin, Texas 78713 BULK RATE U.S. Postage PAID Austin, Permit N o 1181 Return Postage Guaran i!ed Address Correction Reqt

Contents: Austin Cave
rescue / C. Bittinger --
Texas caver costs / J. Reece --
Winter TSA BOG / C. Biegert --
Financial report / J. Reece --
Lost Maples Cave / G. Veni --
Caving near Valles / P. Sprouse --
Trip reports --
Caves of Mexico / T. Raines --
Mexico News / D. Pate.


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