The Texas Caver

The Texas Caver

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The Texas Caver
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The Texas Caver
Texas Speleological Association
Texas Speleological Association
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Regional Speleology ( local )
Technical Speleology ( local )
serial ( sobekcm )
United States


General Note:
Contents: Troll Cave Dig 1990 / Mike Warton -- Lechugilla Mega-Maze / Jay Jorden -- Eckert James River Bat Cave / Jon Cradit -- A Visit to H. T. Miers Cave / Sue Fogarty Pruitt -- Powell's Project 2/91 / George Veni -- Odds and Ends -- Minutes of TSA Meetings 10-14-90 12-11-90 / Mary Standifer -- Minutes from the TSA winter Business Meeting, January 1991 / Carolyn Biegert.
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Vol. 36, no. 02 (1991)
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K26-04692 ( USFLDC DOI )
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11426 ( karstportal - original NodeID )
0040-4233 ( ISSN )

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-, ... THE TEXAS CAVER April 1991


27 28 31 32 34 40 41 42 THE TEXAS CAVER Volume 36, No. 2 April 1991 Troll Cave Dig 1990 by Mike Warton Lechugilla Mega-Maze by Jay Jord e n Eckert James River Bat Cave by Jon Cradit A Visit to H. T Miers Cave by Sue Fogarty Pruitt Powell's Project 2/91 by George Veni Odds and Ends Minutes of TSA Meetings 1 0 14-90 & 12-11-90 by Mary Standifer Minutes from the TSA winter Business Meeting, January 1991 by Carolyn Biegert Alternating Editors: This Issue Keith Heuss Next Issue Oren Tranbarger 3407 Hopechest San Antonio, Tx. 78230 (512) 522-271 0 Day (512) 349-0208Night 1 004-A Milford Way Austin, Tx. 78745 (512) 385-7131 -Day (512) 462-9574-Night Proof Reading .................................. Carolyn Siegert Printed by ............................ ........... ..... Terry Raines Texas Caver labels ................................... Rod Goke Cave Rescue Call Collect '!!' (512) 686-0234 The Texas Caver is a bi-monthly publication of the Texas Spele ( Association (TSA), an internal organization of the National Spele < lo! Society (NSS) Issues are published in February April, June, , u October and December. Subscription rates are $15/year for six issues of The Texas Cav e includes membership in the TSA Out of state subscribers, librari : s other institutions can receive The Texas Caver for the same rate ($1 i/y Send all correspondence (other than material for The Texas subscriptions, and exchanges to : The Texas Caver, P O Box 8026 Texas 78713. Back issues are available at $3.00 per issue Articles and other Material for The Texas Caver should be sen 1 t o of the alternating editors listed above. The Texas Caver openly in i t e cavers to submit articles, trip reports, photographs (35mm o r size black & white or color print on glossy paper) cave map n events, cartoons and/or any other caving related material for pub cal Exchanges should be mailed to The Texas Caver at the subs r p address above The Texas Caver will exchange newsletters wi : 1 grottos. Copyright 1990 by the Texas Speleological Association n il' organizations of the NSS may reprint any item f i rst appearing in Th 'h Caver as long as proper credit is given and a copy of the ne v s l i containing the reprinted material is mailed to the co-editors O organizations should contact the co editors about reprinted mat i n l!! Front Cover Coldwater Cave is a Honey Creek like Cave I Jd in northeast Iowa. This drawing in the Gallery, by cG was done from a slide he took in the cave in June 1990 o 1 with the Windy City Grotto Inside Cover Glen Schneider transporting gear betw 3n. second and third drops in Troll Cave. Photo by David M


cteabe 1!\ig 1990 by Mike Warton A spring trip by Austin area cavers increased the urveyed depth of Troll Cave from 301' ( 1982) to 320'; the otential for more looks pretty good! Glen Schneider, !harley Savvas, Todd Thomas, David & Danny Michaels, .nd I traveled to the netherlands of Terrell County to ,ndertake a deep cave dig project at Troll Cave eight ears after its discovery. Although a hot and very dry spring has prevailed thus u across the Karst landscape, evidence of prior flooding ppeared in stark contrast a few feet down in the ntrance of the cave. As we extracted a brush/log jam rom a narrow slot in the breakdown, a swift rush of cold ir greeted our labored sweat. With the jam cleared and he porcupines and copperheads under control, we wiggled ownward through several constrictions toward the first ope drop and the arduous task of transporting duffles full .f digging tools. Ahead, another porcupine puffed its _uills as we cautiously inched past. Just beyond a dry 1lunge pool, the passage was blocked by a wall-like stack .fprecariously balanced boulders. Again the cave revealed history of powerful floodwaters -power enough to lift .nd stack boulders weighing well over 150 pounds! We umbled down an impressive wall just a short distance efore the first pit, where a bolt and hanger was placed all rope drops were bolted this trip). The pit drops free for 20 feet to an offsetting ledge .nd free again for another 25 feet. From the bottom, a 10 bot climb-up leads to walking size passage increasing in ize as it continues downward over large breakdown reaching a room approximately 50 feet, wide 60 eet long and 20 feet high, with a 15 foot diameter pit lgainst one wall (the second drop). At the edge of the second shaft we took particular of brush jammed into the sculpted ceiling 20 feet 1verhead ... directly over the 15 foot by 50 foot deep :econd drop! We were awe-struck by the unmeasurable rolume of water taken by the cave during flooding. )bviously, weather reports are of serious consideration >rior to visiting this cave. The pleasant free drop leads to l short series of climbdowns and a third pit that drops out 'rom an almost crawlway size constriction. The third drop is free for 40 feet and severely mdercut making the lip edge difficult coming and going, >articularly transporting excessive gear. The bottom of .his drop leads directly into the largest room of the cave vhich is 60 feet wide, 125 feet long, and from 40 to 80 eet in height. A massive arched natural bridge/column ooms overhead and a dome shaft beyond rises out of :ight. Following along the right hand wall, the floor -iescends over slippery breakdown to a short 10 foot !limbdown and a few feet ahead to another pit. Pit #4 is an impressive 70 foot drop into one end of a arge crevice passage. At the bottom, the passage extends lpproximately 100 feet to another series of steep climbdowns and exposure traverses. The ceiling over this area rises to over 100 feet. At the last 15 foot climbdown the passage ahead doubles back underneath the passage above, extending about 350 feet over small downclimbs, pools, and nice speleothems. The ceiling becomes a very impressive, thick display mat of fossilized oyster shells and stalactites. Some of the shells spotted measure up to 10 inches in length. The semi-walking trunk passage comes to an abrupt end in a pseudo-sump room at minus 300 feet. A large breakdown collapse marks the previous end of the cave and old standing water lines can be seen on the walls near the roof Along the right wall is a 20 foot deep blind mud pit. To the left, a muddy crawlway extends 50 feet then pinches off. We theorized that essentially all of the cave biota gets wiped out by floodwaters down to the 300 foot level. At this point the first organisms appeared. We collected numerous specimens of an orangish, spider-like Hoplobunus (new species), the only cave species found thus far after some intensive searching. The Hoplobunus collected is highly cave adapted (Troglobitic). At the bottom of the breakdown collapse we began the dig, excavating an area beneath large breakdown blocks. The rubble was handed from person to person up and out into the spaciousness of the sump room. Approximately an hour later, a vertical hole was cleared and declared large enough to enter, with possible open passage at the bottom. I carefully squeezed down feet first underneath a wall, into a low wide area. I could not see ahead well until I could turn around. After doing so, I crawled ahead moving loose rocks that obscured the view. After about 15 feet, the crawlway turned to the right into a small alcove. To the left the crawl continued but became too low. At this point I was running out of room to place any loose rocks. Others came in from behind to assist. Finally, all of the loose rocks were moved. Air movement was noticeably good. The floor of the crawl was sand and small gravel. A small pit remained plugged with it, as well as, the "too low" crawl ahead. As I peered ahead, I could see approximately 40 feet of passage. We stopped the dig at this point and felt that the next flood surge would likely strip out the loose sand and gravel and enlarge the passage, making further access possible at a later date. The air movement was the best indication that this is not the end of the cave. We increased the depth of Troll Cave 19 feet from the initial survey on our first dig attempt. The geology of the Devils River Formation here is favorable for a deeper cave. A return trip is planned soon. A.ny cavers interested in visiting Troll Cave should contact Mike Warton at 3508 Valley Pike Road, Cedar Park, Texas 78613 (phone 512-250-8143). 1:rhe Texas Caver April 1991 27


Lechuepilla Me5a-Maze: A &>kelcher' s Nitjhlmare by Jay Jorden Destination: Dates: Lechuguilla Cave; Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico January 2-6, 1991 Personnel: Pat Kambesis, Rick Bridges, Steve Sims, Donald Davis, Don Kleuver, Bob Montgomery, Don Denton, Miles Hecker, Carol Vesley, Bill Stephens, Don Glasco, Sharon Lytle, Jay Jorden and about 50 other cavers Returning from northern Mexico, I contacted Sharon Lytle in Fort Worth. She and I had discussed attending some of the week-long Lechugilla Cave Project expedition, the first since early 1990 This inaugural expedition of the new year was to precede three others, the last overlapping into 1992. Rick Bridges, by phone, had told me that it was best I had not tried to get .into the cave the beginning of that week, Dec. 29, because a scheduling problem had prevented some people from getting on a trip. The new park superintendent and cave specialist were on site to ensure that only a certain number of cavers were in Lech at any given time. By 4:30 p m Wednesday, I had driven to Fort Worth to meet Sharon. On the way out of town, we stopped at Backwoods to purchase a few space blanket-type bivouac bags Sheila Knight had sewn me a ripstop nylon bivy sack to use in overnight stays in Lech, but Sharon also needed such a bag. She bought an extra as well, which was fortuitous. Weather conditions in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, the typical overcast, cold drizzle of this winter, did not improve as we drove west. In fact, conditions had deteriorated by the time we passed Abilene to blowing fog and patchy ice. This blowing fog was a novel phenomenon, with waves of the stuff moving across the highway It meant that drivers could often see less than two stripes on the highway dividing line ahead. At Big Spring, where we stopped for gas, the moisture on the windshield was turning to ice and the station attendant was cursing the West Texas wind. We decided tentatively to stay in Carlsbad overnight, rather than driving up the mountain to the fieldhouse, and get an early start Thursday morning. We arrived in Carlsbad about 1 a m. MST, slept and arose early --a rude 7:30 a.m. wakeup call! Grabbing breakfast on the road, we arrived at the fieldhouse about 9 a m. to find a few people milling around in the Cave Research Foundation hut. Many people were still in the cave --the average trip length is a couple of days now-and four to five more groups of four people each were listed on the Thursday signup. Luckily, the sketcher and one other person in a group dropped out because of illness Sharon and I were in! Of course, it was then that the fear and loathing started in earnest. Pat Kambesis, a co-lea of the expedition, arrived at the fieldhouse sho thereafter and gave her approval for our group's entr Our companions, Randy Brown and Dave Hughes both Coloradoans Randy was to read instruments, w l Dave and Sharon were to switch off on front and b tape. The trip's destination was listed simply as "ea which meant down the dreaded Apricot Pit. But that! of the cave is still yielding passage and has continuei be a popular place to go. When Sharon and I lucked into this trip, Randy: Dave had already been waiting for some time to go. we hurriedly packed, parked the car properly and left. rappelled into the entrance pit about 2:30 p.m., quic moved through the entrance series and found no o n e Boulder Falls, the 150 foot drop. I was ahead of ev ery1 else and decided to wait at the bottom, the Cali for Room. But Randy had sent word ahead with the gn right behind me to move on down to EF Junction with the momentum built up, I continued the long d eso through Glacier Bay, the Windy City area and in t o 1 Rift Since I had been in the cave during s Jve expeditions, the Rift went surprisingly quickly and I amazed to arrive at EF Junction so quickly After some time, another group arrived. Its me nb were going down the first drop of Apricot to the }h Town area and the infamous S&M Crawl, 500 t l the Marquis de Sade would have appreciated. Therf, tl were to attempt a high climb The group was stron.:,. climbers. Down the Apricot Pit Presently, Dave, Sharon and Randy appeare< ru after they rested briefly, we were off again for th s b scramble to the top of Apricot. Dave descended fir : t e I followed The pit contains four groups of ropes tc tai around 500 feet. After the first and second ropes, J CAl to the traverse which had been rigged through eff r rli National Geographic photographer Nick Nichols' tfal11 avoid a nasty crevice squeeze on Rope No 3. [ v traversing over to the top of the new Rope No. 3 Dave yelled up from below, "Say, am I on the right .op I asked him where he was. He described a gnar y s 28 April1991 The Texas ] a l


Nith a lot of so-called "Lechugorilla shit." That's the thick )OZe that covers much of the drop, with the consistency of 1 combination of mud, graphite and motor oil. I told Dave 1e was on the wrong rope. By that time, he was almost iirectly below me. I rigged to rappel from the traverse md followed him down. After the fourth rope, we rested '1t Pack's Peak II and waited for the others. Since we knew of no vertical work to be done at our :lestination and didn't have any other ropes to rig with us, we elected to leave our climbing gear at the peak. That lightened the load considerably. I had brought two quarts of water, food for two days, a bivy sack, notebook and other surveying gear in a monster TAG pack. It was nice to have some room in it for a change! We set off then for Nirvana. As Randy was fond of saying, "You can't reach Nirvana if you don't do Apricot Pit." I had been down it before, as had Sharon. But I had ':vivid memories of my two battles ascending it, along with 1he separate trip where we bypassed the pit by a back way and went through S&M I started mentally trying to l devise a game plan for conquering the first overhang at 'the bottom of the pit as we moved through Nirvana, a glistening white area of aragonite, soda straws and ; flowstone that is highlighted by deep pools of water. : There, we refreshed ourselves, then moved on toward the Orange Bowl. The Rusticles In les.:; than an hour from the pit's bottom, we were at the Rusticles area and camp. These bizarre formations resemble corroded iron fragments at an ocean bottom, yet they assume the shapes of stalactites and columns. More on those later. We pitched camp near the Rusticles, a traditional overnight site. By then, it was around 7 p m and time for supper. Sharon had brought her usual assortment of gourmet packaged foods --beef Wellington, lasagna, etc. while I had something short of that. Not that I hadn't brought enough food, but I didn't want to have to pack a so-called "burrito" out of the cave if I could avoid it. The Lech rule is, "Pack it in, pack it out. That includes human waste. We had all come with the standard bottles, as well After dinner, Randy had remembered some leads from a previous trip above the campsite area. We went to investigate and ended up mapping about 300 feet of passage. This expedition, it was reported that many groups weren't even managing to find that much new passage on some trips. So I already felt lucky, in a way. At the end of the GC3 survey, we took off on a tangent that led through some sharp breakdown and squeezes to what initially we called Sharon's Room (since she had been lead tape and the first there.) It was later renamed through efforts of Randy and Sharon to the "Thursday Evening Dropping Drippy Painted Black Acid Waffle Doily Raft Room." Those adjectives described the time we found it and the type of formations therein --complicated boxwork and lacy formations, often black, intermingled with calcite rafts, often white or light-colored. At the station where we entered the room from the crawl, Randy climbed high into a much larger room, Raton Dome. Since we were all members of the Lechuguilla "Rat Patrol," ratting out small leads in cave survey cleanup, the name Raton --little rat in Spanish --was appropriate. In the first part of the lead, we had been used to getting survey shots under 20 feet. But, popping out into the Raton Room about 2 a.m., we saw that the shots were going to go 50 feet-plus. Our minds and bodies were already fried from having pushed and mapped for hours So, we elected to get some shuteye before tackling the big room the next day Mega-Maze Mania If you're waiting for the sun to come up in a cave bivouac, you're going to be there for a long time! We awoke shortly before noon I was amazed to find that I had slept that long, and that everyone had let me! Randy said that's typically the amount of time he's slept in cave overnights. I had been accustomed to sleeping no more than seven hours --and usually five or so. But everyone decided that they had deserved a break after a hard night's work. After a leisurely breakfast, we were back at it again. Returning to the Raton Room on Friday, we continued the survey up the climb to a high rock, then shot across the room and did a series of spray shots. After the room was mapped to its nearly 50by 100 foot extent (50-foot plus ceiling heights), Randy led a rather sporting climb up to a high set of leads. He found a lot of passage up there and then an easier way down --and up. From the Raton Room, we proceeded into this mega-maze that resembled swiss cheese, with passages shooting off at angles in all different directions--a sketcher's nightmare. Occasionally, Randy or Dave would glance at me and say, "A lot of fun, isn't it?" I would have rather been running instruments, I thought at times. We surveyed, we surveyed down through this three dimensional maze. Sharon amazed everyone with her energy and drive at lead tape. Randy began to call her "leader of the Rat Patrol." She kept finding going passage, (much to this sketcher's chagrin!) Presently, we had racked up almost 1,000 feet of survey! Thankfully, the team would let me catch up a little with my angle calculations and sundry administrative chores before forging off in some new direction. The leads were sporting and everyone got tired. The mega-maze ate one of Sharon's gloves and one of Randy's mini-Mags My second FX2 battery died in the process. (So how much electric light did I want, anyway?) Eventually, we tied into another survey, the GFX6A series, in a room that was loaded with pretties, including orange flowstone, some really nice bacon and draperies. It was, by then, almost midnight again. Our work at a convenient stopping place, it was back to camp for Night Two. The Rendezvous Returning to camp, I was leading the group when I heard a voice say, "Fee fi fo fum." It was that of Jeanne The Texas Caver April 1991 29


Wetter ling of Birdsboro, P A. She was down at the Rusticles with Donald Davis and Chris Burns. That group had planned to do some cleanup surveying in the area and was interested in our find. So we regaled them with tales of the high leads and in turn, heard the stories of the ice storm that had raked through Carlsbad during the last couple of days, leaving cacti covered in frostwork. All said we were lucky to have been inside the cave during this time. I knew Jeanne from the time I saw her at the bottom of Golondrinas. She and Donald had pitched camp just up the low hill from our group. Randy, Dave and Sharon elected to go to the Orange Bowl area for some water before bedtime. Donald, meanwhile, enlightened me on the speleogenesis of the Rusticles and some of the theories that had been abounding on them and other unique formations in Lech. He said that he and the Palmers (Art and Peg) were coauthoring a paper on Lech's formations for an upcoming NSS Bulletin. Before turning in, we commented on Ron Kerbo's going-away party on the surface. The Friday night soiree was to see Ron off to Santa Fe, where he had been promoted to work for the National Park Service on a nationwide basis. But. we expressed hope we could catch some of the slides from the LCP group's trip to the USSR at the Belskis' house Saturday night. Sleep came after midnight, again I had moved my poncho and bivy sack a little farther up the hill to avoid that sliding feeling I had had the previous night. And I arranged the meager ensolite pad under me to prevent that cold-knees feeling. The Long Way Out Donald's group was planning to push into the cave in search of several hours' mapping before heading back out. We had done our share and wanted an early start to avoid a jam at Apricot or Boulder Falls. By shortly before noon, we were at the bottom of Apricot and I was climbing out. With the first lip of the first rope, it really was mind over matter. I had thought a lot about how to avoid so much thrashing around to get over this severely undercut lip. It only took about five minutes to get over it --even less if it were not for the fact that the rope had the audacity to slip to the left and off a ledge while I was engrossed in this process. One other time, it had taken almost 15 minutes to get over. Ugh! Dave was ahead of me and I could hear him starting on the second rope. Behind, I could hear Sharon starting on the lip. The estimated "average" time to climb the pit is between an hour to 1 Yz hours, although Randy says it should be done in under one. After the first rope, I was actually flying along, resting a couple of times and managing to retrieve my gloves from sliding down the drop. Rope No.2, with its traverse, is sporting but direct and one of the friendlier climbs in the pit. I rested at the top of that and then began the third rope across the slide zone, slippery with gorilla remains. The pause that refreshes before the last that puppy licked! Dave was at the top, pacing around to stay warm. It was before 2 p.m. Then began the wait for Sharon and Randy. After a considerable time, we heard voices near second rope Both were okay, just taking time to get Randy was helping Sharon with her pack/gear. Rat advised us to get to at least the bottom of Boulder Fa and up if we could. We blasted, pausing to let the sw drip off only a couple of times. The Rift went by in a bl again, then the long climb up to and through Glacier E At Pack's Peak, I had stashed a couple granola/chocolate bars, an orange and breakfast fc along with a shirt. The food Dave and I shared for so extra climbing energy He and I were both up the rop about 10 minutes each, after which time we heard Ranc voice. After Randy ascended, he told us he was carrying extra pack, which we offered to share. But he told w get to the entrance pit and wait. The entrance series 1 passed in a short time. The culvert pipe had little of usual wailing wind and, up the short chimney to bottom of the entrance drop, the air seemed warm. Th were no stars. Someone was at the top waiting for another grt Scrounging for some batteries that Dave graciot provided for the last little bit of needed energy ou ascended the low rope and he the high. It was 7 F Thirty minutes later, Sharon and Randy were at bottom of the pit and ready to come out. Dave and I been planning what plate of Mexican food we were gr. to order at Lucy's Restaurant in Carlsbad. When Ra arrived, he said we'd have a hard time making it but pi also sounded good. We had been in the cave for 53 hot Then came the 11/z-mile hike back to the vehicle s 9-mile drive back to the fieldhouse and a cold shower was good, though, to get some of the gorilla remains : the larger chunks of dirt off. Sharon and I rushed i Carlsbad to try to make the party at Dave Belski's saw a lot of the project members, who were watch : n Wind Cave videotape when we arrived. After saying h e and goodbyes, we rushed to Pizza Hut to find D o r Davis eating his umpteenth plate of salad. (Donald U salad --a lot.) I got one of those, too. Sharon said to )J a pizza--it didn't matter what was on it, she said, t J with a couple of beers. The sky was the limit Civilization had again arrived, with the ability to n that phone call home and sit in a chair. We stayed 1 closing, eating, drinking and talking. Then, we rett r to the mountains for the night On Sunday morning, we arose early. The J out of bed: we hadn't seen it rise since Thursday. h was that bright light, anyway? We cooked all the eg L : had, making a massive omelet and several pots of C > l Gear was returned to proper places and packed. Wet Steve Sims and others adieu and returned to Carl J l stopping by Rick's where Miles and he were attempti n reboot the LCP mapping program. Sharon bought ll Petzl gear from Ann Strait, an authorized dealer. Then, we headed east, back through the West r E fog and drizzle, and home once again. 30 April1991 The Texas G1v


Eckert James River Bat Cave History and Trip Report by Jon Cradit February 23, 1991 Jack Ralph, Mack Pitchford, Kay Love, Fred Edmiston, Gill Ediger, Jon, Lisa and Mason Cradit Two Eckert cousins wanted to protect the bat cave that had been in their family for generations. They asked two researchers who were studying the bats in the cave who they thought would be a good steward to give the cave and property to. The researchers suggested the Texas Nature Conservancy. Clinton Schulze, another cousin and mayor of Mason, the town closest to the cave, contacted the TNC. This type of contact is considered unsolicited and is termed a "walk in". Three TNC staff members met Mr. Schulze and toured the property surrounding the cave in early 1989. Mterwards the TNC contacted the Texas Natural Area Survey for its evaluation of the importance of the cave. The survey considered the cave one of the top 10 important bat caves. The TNC submitted a management proposal to the Eckerts for their review and approval. The proposal concerned the property, just over 3lfz acres, and the cave. This parcel had been held out of the sale of the rest of the ranch years earlier because the family realized the importance of the cave and wanted to assure its care. The most obvious problem with the property was that it had no access to the county road. Fortunately the property was purchased from a rancher to connect the road to the cave property. This strip is presently being developed by volunteer workers one weekend a month. When this is complete a trail and parking lot will allow visitors access to watch the bat flights. Though the property is owned by TNC, the cave will be jointly managed by the TNC and Bat Conservation International. On February 23, 1991 a small group of us ventured to the cave to survey, but not before we all converged in Fredericksburg for the All-You-Can-Stuff Breakfast. Foregoing lunch later that day, we broke into two teams to survey the main bat cave and an adjacent large room cave. At first the division of the two teams was done by facial hair. Last year when we first visited the cave the ammonia was so strong we had to wear respirators before we could even get close to the entrance of the cave. I had assumed the same would be true this year. It wasn't. Although you without doubt noticed the odor, it was not as unbearable. Fred, Mack and Jack entered the non-bat cave since they all had beards and therefore could not get a good seal on the respirators. Gill, Kay and I took on the main bat cave. Lisa and Mason kept watch out front. The main cave is the Eckert James River Bat Cave. Last year the guano was moist and so fluffy you could easily sink one to two or more feet into it. And it stuck to, and permeated, your clothes, for weeks and weeks. This year the guano was not as moist and soft; however, there were large populations of beetles and other micro bugs. Kay acquired a nice collection to take home, at the suggestion of Gill, and they rode out in the collar of her coveralls. The rough dimensions of the main room are 85 feet by 35 feet, with strong evidence of a joint controlled side passage. The second cave was previously unnamed until this survey. The team named it Porcupine Quill Cave because the remainder of such was found in a side alcove in the cave. This cave is basically a large room which measures 75 feet by 54 feet and appears to be separated from the main cave by breakdown, which is what forms the back entrance of the main cave and the entrance to Porcupine Quill Cave. Both teams emerged from the two caves at practically the same moment. We added an overland survey to tie the two entrances together and headed to the river to clean up before dark. We debated packing up and driving to the Powell's Cave Project to camp, but, naaaa. Take nothing but photographs. Leave nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time. and ... Join the NSS. Regular membership in the National Speleological Society is $25 per year. Join now, send your dues to : The National Speleological Soci c: : Cave Avenue, Huntsville, AL 35810 phone: (205) 852-1300 The Texas Caver April 1991 31


A VIsit T() ti. T. Miers Cave Written by: Sue Fogarty Pruitt Participants: Cathy Chauvin, Allan Cobb, Gill Ediger, Paul Fambro, Bill Finch, John Fogarty, Terry Gregst 1 Susie Lasko, Danny Michael, Gary Napper, Peter Sprouse, Tim Stich & Corey Zeigler My brother called me late in the afternoon of a hard Thursday and told me about an expedition to H T. Miers leaving the next day. Easy vertical stuff, a bunny-slope sort of cave, lots of novices expected, he promised. Possibly there would be nubie cavers even less experienced than I. Imagine that. I had been stumbling about in the fluorescent stress of North Dallas for a long time. The job had been eating my lunch, about 55 hours a week. But down the road waited friends! Adventure! Scraped knees, maybe some nice bats, the suck of mud at my boots, the elation that floats me like a balloon when I settle into my seat harness that first second on rope; I twisted around to see the tiny world below me. I answered some idiot memos, my P

evidence of flooding in the cave. Fifteen cavers entered at 12:30. I was amongst the first bunch in, but John, Allan and Cathy Chauvin briskly plunged ahead to rig the rest of the cave. Terry and Paul had brought a wire brush, and they took turns scrubbing at the painted arrows that : decorated the walls here and there. Although these markers were, no doubt, placed with the intent to be helpful, the cave looked much better without them. Gill asked me if I was scared, and I told him that I always am, but I ignore it. Right away, it was necessary to get on rope down two small drops, the first about 4 meters and the second about 5. As usual, I reveled in the blinding tingle of adrenaline as my boots left the rock face and I dangled like a dust mop in space, on rope at last. I think back over the intensity of that sweaty-palmed thrill, that moment when I feel more alive than I have ever been. I wonder what kind of high it must be to slip over the edge of something really BIG, like the legendary Golondrinas. Will I be there someday? Can life really be so sweet? Enough rapture. Then followed a drop that was more a 7 meter scramble down a crumbly slope with rope assistance, depositing us in a nice sized, roundish room with a dry floor. We milled about the room, and contemplated the chimney climb-up that is the only route to the rest of the cave. This was a narrow crack (less than my skinny shoulders width) with rough walls, that looked about four stories high, but turns out to be less than 4 meters. Beyond it, I was promised, is a lovely 25 meter free drop that is some of the best fun in the cave. Some brush was wedged in it, evidence of big bad floods. A chunk of tree that looked just like half a telephone pole had somehow inserted itself. The first cavers up (Peter and Gill, I think) did some rearranging of the flotsam, and we all stood back until the telephone pole had crashed to the bottom of the fireplace opening part of the chimney. It propped diagonally against the rocks, and looked invitingly like a good starting foot hold, but proved to be too slippery and not really useful for the odd contortions required to get up this crack. I have never squeezed up a chimney before, and I didn't know what to do. A couple of folks squirmed up it. Terry told about the last time she did this cave, and got through this by being pushed from below and pulled from above. Then she went up it in approximately the same fashion. I climbed in and turned about, pressed my hands against one wall and my butt against the other, and didn't go anywhere. I turned around and tried it again. Gravity maintained its hold. I slunk out to contemplate the matter, and several competent types went up. I needed to go up this chimney, as I had already passed that irritating fanny pack, containing my candy bars, water, and ascending gear, up to someone on the other side. I watched this smooth-cheeked Danny chimney nonchalantly up, using heels and knees, facing the opposite direction (face into the room) than most took I could do that. I climbed over the log, stuck my heels in shallow pockets on one wall and pressed my well-padded knees against the opposite wall. My hands scrambled about ineffectively for hand holds, but I shimmied my rear end in a vaguely upward direction, my knees and heels searching for a spot, pressing in, rest, search, press. I rose up the chimney like Santa, basking in the honey of Gill's praise. I rushed to my reward, the gorgeous long free drop, parallel to a beautiful cascade of flowstone. In the big, rock-strewn room at the bottom, I lay my head down against my pack, turned out my light and felt the sudden deep dark fall on me like a lover. I napped for a few minutes. Other folks began arriving from the lower depths of the cave and from up above. The actual location of several members of the party came into question, as we spoke with Cory and his companion. They claimed to have gone all the way to the sump, but had never encountered John, Allan and Cathy, who had been the lead group. We reckoned we would find everyone sooner or later, but there was some discussion of a bifurcation in the passage up ahead, and the need to stay to the right. The following drop was rigged first with a single rope, then rerigged as three little drops--4 meters, 2 meters, 4 meters. This deposited us at the mouth of a horizontal passage, most of it stoop walking, with a little bit of crawling over and under boulders. It got a bit muddy, and I made the mistake of sitting down in a puddle. After about 200 meters of walking, we broke into the opening high in the wall of the last room. We overlooked the sump, a glassy blue pool when our lights hit it. I had left my pack with ascending gear before entering the passage, so I just crouched on the rocks above the drop of about 3 meters and watched the folks wander about below. Susie and I talked about music, and I hummed a little. Peter climbed back up and reported the sump was high. We started back. Susie educated me patiently on the attachment and use of rope-walking gear, and I flailed up the rope. In the big room with the nice flowstone, all bodies were accounted for. It seemed that a few cavers (Tim and Gary, perhaps?) had gone left, not right, at the 'Y' in the passage, but had ended up in the sump room anyway. Cory set up his tripod and camera and did some very creative photography of climbers on rope. Then it was up the big free drop, and I was on the little 2-stage platform above that beastly chimney. This time, gravity was all too much on my side. I wondered how much damage it would do me if I just put my hands down against my sides, pointed my toes, and slipped down in feet-first, like a body over the ship's rail. It would probably only break my ankles. So I got a brave coach stationed below. (Danny again! If I get out of this cave, I thought, I might have to marry or adopt this guy.) With Danny calling out "a little to the left" instruct; ems, I did a vertical duck walk down the chimney. Then some more rope-climbing, which seemed to be getting easier for me. This borrowed gear was the best (continued on page 40) The Texas Caver April 1991 33


POWELL'C) CAVE, PQOJECT 2/91 The sun rose to a cool, clear morning on Saturday, 23 February 1991 over the caver camp at Powell's Cave Many who were either new to caving or new to the project woke as early as 6:30 a m ready to head into the cave, unaware that lady and gentlemen cavers do not go underground before noon Seriously though, it takes time to coordinate 58 cavers into a dozen teams to effectively survey and check leads in the second longest cave in Texas This Powell's trip hosted the first large contingent of cavers from Texas A&M University Upon arriving at the cave their trip leader realized he forgot to bring helmets for 6 new cavers. A quick trip to the hardware stores in Menard proved fruitless but the cavers did meet some Iialf/way lo Iioney Creel local Aggies who placed a few phone calls to f r en working in construction and the helmets came pouri t g i Despite all the Aggie jokes, being an A&M stude. 1 t 1 alumnus can certainly have its advantages. The first team into Powell's Cave entered on Satl rdf morning at 10:25 a m. and the last entered at 1 p.n I usual, the bottleneck of people crawling througt tl narrow entrance formed a long queue of cavers team took an average of 15 minutes to get inside. 'Th area immediately inside the entrance was excepti o 1al! pleasant due to the lack of bats and gnats whicl a1 abundant on the June and October trips. Team 1 was led by Dale Pate, returning to con ; i n u surveying in the F Survey/Night Gallery area wiH B i 34 April 1991 The Texas C WI'


by George Veni Mixon, Paul Mueller, Keith Unger and Robin Wilson. During their 11 hours underground they surveyed 200 m, closing a few small loops and one large loop along the old F Survey to the Crevice. Many leads remain, especially in the maze area where the F Survey and Night Gallery meet. Mu c h of this survey is in an upper level where the limeston e is a soft powdery silt along the walls and floor. This texture tends to absorb sound and team members had to yell to hear each other only short distances down the passage. Bill Mixon recalls that in one spot, only 15 m away from Dale, Dale's shouts sounded 200 m away. Butch Fralia led a large Team 2 to conduct various tasks throughout cave; team membe rs included Bruce and Mike Anderson, Lee Jay Graves, Christopher and Keith Reuss, Carl Ponebshek, David and Mike Pearson, and Mark Porter. The team's first job was to check a potential survey error in the EB Survey; it was found to be only a "typo" error in the notes. Then went down the Crevice to the Stream Passage to collect a water sample, which was analyzed later that day for pH, alkalinity and C02 The sample proved typical of groundwater for that area, but a more in-depth interpretation would require a more detailed analysis and/or several such analyses ove r ' le to look for significant trends. Following the ,tte r collection, everyone headed up the Crevice as far as the F Survey to check on survey stations which may need to be better marke d or replaced and then exited the cave 6 hours after The Texas Caver April 1991 35


they entered. Team 3 consisted of Brian Burton, Mike Mark Minton, Bill Steele, and the thoughts of everyo n1 else in the cave Team 3 pushed to the upstream end o Powell's to try and connect with 1.5 km long Silver Min: Cave. Their first disappointment came early into thei : trip when Brian Burton was not well enough (from battery of shots he had to take a couple of days earlier) t r push to the back. The second disappointment was whe r the upper level lead they were exploring would not connet to Silver Mine without major excavation. Nonetheles: they surveyed 201 m of "Pelvic Passage" and "More Pelvi Passage" (named for anastomosed rock in the ceilinr reminiscent of cow pelvis bones) and exited after 15 h o ur. underground. While they didn't succeed in connecting t h E trip, several promising leads remain to be pushed and the left behind a rock hammer so they "would have to go bad and get it." Team 5 had never been in Powell's so Team 4 led th1 way to the junction of the Andre Cyparis (AC) and M e t n (M) surveys. Sharon Darnell, Diana Mater, Jay Saathof and George Veni comprised Team 4 which spent 12 in the cave surveying 237 m in the far end of the AC nea: the Metro Both Diana and Jay did exceptionally well fo: their first caving trip, especially Diana who did all 1 h a : crawling with just one kneepad! The remaining porti o n o the AC should easily be completed on the next trip. Parting from Team 4 at the AC-M junction, Team 5'! Tom ("T") Bone, David Campbell, Randy Harden and Bil Stephens began the survey of the Metro --the rnos: distant part of the maze known to extend from th: Crevice. They tallied the most hours and meters surv ( yei. in the cave at 16 hrs and 400 m. At least one trip's w rtl of resurvey remains and several leads with good air entices them back. Next time they plan on carrying n ott water; the cave was a lot warmer than they expecte d The Third Crevice (TC) Survey was nearly compl tee by Team 6's Donna Anderson, Don Denton, Monte D 1 we and Chad Lawrence They surveyed 124m during 1 1ei! 11 hours in the cave, leaving one lead unsurveyed. 1 : 1e' probably would have finished the TC if they hadn't go tet lost in the Entrance Maze trying to get to their su ve: area. This has happened to several teams; perhaps s -SJl' will be installed some day in that confusing and vel traveled part of the cave! Steve Keselik, Jim Mcintire and Joe Sum eri comprised Team 7 and also became confused tryin : ( locate and begin the resurvey of the Witch's Caul< r m (WC) area. Their difficulty was caused by the old In[ which wasn't clear that the we was an upper level tc thi main maze and could not be reached from the Cre ice Eventually they found their way into the WC via th 7 i Survey area and mapped 218 m. Their initial impre iot of the we is that it is a maze whose complexity l!li extent may rival the adjacent 7J-AC surveys where vel 1.4 km have already been mapped. Time in the caw li hours. Team 8's Mary Chmaitelli, Stuart Halliday, Tr Kinthen, Dave Pietman and Randy Winans began ar I


almost completed the survey of the LL area, which is a lower loop from the Third Crevice to the 3S Survey. After nearly 9 hours and 149 m surveyed, one "low, grim" lead remains as well as several digging leads. The G Survey was begun by Team 9's Pat Ayers, Scott Caffee, Richard Chitwood, Pat Geery and Barbara Luke. When asked about that area, a common response was "we've just started; there's lots more to do." Their 9.5 hours in the cave gave that section a good start with 152 m of survey. Team 10 was led by Dale Henry and Mary Standifer, who arrived too late to join a survey team but spent 7 5 hours teaching new cavers Mary Pustjovsky and Glen ? (his signature wasn't legible) a bit about caving while exploring as far as the upper ends of the Crevice. The Entrance Maze (EM) dynamic duo of Doug Allen and Bill Elliott were joined this trip by Carolyn Biegert to form Team 11. Only 69 m were surveyed since the EM is nearly wrapped up; most of their 8.5 hours were spent on finishing and improving the sketch. Bill has noted some geologic features which he hopes will be better understood by these sketches. Next trip he plans a few profiles through the EM to complete that area. Team 12 was the last team into the cave on Saturday the 23rd. Terry Holsinger led Cindy Hamner, Jean Might and Jan Mitchell on a 4 hour mission to find the various teams lost in the Entrance Maze and to take them to their elusive destinations. On Sunday the 24th, two more teams entered Powell's. Stuart Halliday, Travis Kinthen, Barbara Luke and Randy Winans surveyed 120m in theCA (Columbia Avenue) section, located off the Third Crevice. Only one lead remains through a "sharp, horrible rockfall." Team 13 was underground for 4.5 hours. Carolyn Biegert, Pat Geery, and Christopher and Keith Reuss made up Team 14 and spent 5 hours taking photographs along the Crevice. Although only one bat was reported in the cave, other biologic observations were made. The most noted were tremendous trails of red ants which had been reported by the teams from the Stream Passage, Third Crevice, and the LL Survey. Bill Elliott later confirmed that they were not fire ants. The insects had created a well established network of "roadways", bridges and tunnels. At least one mound was reported. The cave's Rhadine beetles, which are normally active at night, were quite active in the morning in the vicinity of the ants; they were probably being disturbed or preyed upon. In summary, the surveys from this weekend at Powell's Cave added 1,870 m to the map for a total resurveyed system length of 16,505 m (10.25 miles). This is over half the length of Honey Creek Cave, Texas' longest, and has been achieved in only 6 trips since the resurvey effort began. If participation and productivity in the project continues at this pace, the cave will exceed its old total survey length in about a year and possibly regain its # 1 spot on the Texas long cave list in 2 years --and without considering a connection to Silver Mine. While some areas of the cave are being completed, many others are yielding new and extensive mazes. This trend of discoveries will likely continue for some time to come. For more information on the Powell's Cave Project contact Terry Holsinger, 1007-A Milford Way, Austin, Texas 78745, (512) 445-7340. Trips to Powell's Cave are scheduled for the 4th weekend of each February, June and October. FOUND IN POWELL'S CAVE: One knife. If you can describe it, claim it from Stuart Halliday, 3501 Leon St. #32, Bryan, Texas 77801. The Photos: The group photo on page 34 and 35 is from a 4x5 B/W negative taken on Plus-X film by Keith Heuss. This Lower Crevice photo, page 36, was taken south of the Entrance Maze. The viewpoint is about ten feet off the floor looking downstream in one of the longer straight sections of the passage. Christopher, Pat and Carolyn provided the three M3B bulb flashes to illuminate the passage. From a Kodachrome slide by Keith Reuss. The Map: The Map on the following pages is a line plot of the remapping project as of February 1991. Data is entered into SMAPS on a PC. It is processed and an Absolute Coordinate Data file is written to disk. Another intermediate program reads this file and writes a file importable by Generic CADD. Now the "map" is a drawing in Generic CADD format. It is then edited and plotted to scale on a laser printer. Editing enhances features of the cave. In the case of Powell's Cave, the Crevice and the Stream Passage are given wider lines to make them stand out. Dl /n ''"' 1 : A Caver-Oriented BBS (512) 441-5042 Austin, TX. The Texas Caver April 1991 37


Powell's CaveMenard County, TexasPreliminary line plot asofFebruary1991CAD DrawnbyKeith Reuss May1991Thismapisa preliminary line plot of datafromthe Powell's Cave Resurvey Project, and the Neel's Cave survey data. The lower stream passageisfrom old survey data. For survey credits, refer to all the trip reports published in theTexas Caversince the beginning of the resurvey project. Note the stream passage and the crevice are printed in bold to stand out from the maze passage. The maze area of the caveisprinted at2.5x enlargement at the right. The mapisproduced from SMAPS unadjusted loop data. The lower connection to the stream passage may beinerror andisa "bestfit"adjustment to the old Powell's Cave map.o5001000m.t::1=:::::E===:==t::=:::i====:=3==::1E------------d==:===.=l:=:::::::E==:===.=l:=:::::::EE------------d==:====3oI100020003000ft.


Powell'sCaveEntranceMoIo50 100150 200m.;200 400600ft.Neel'sCaveEntrance


(A Visit to H T Miers Cave continued from page 33) fitting of any rig I have ever used, and it is remarkable what a difference that made. Nothing short of a crane, however, could help me over those tricky overhangs at the top. I would climb up the rope right smartly, and then spend 10 minutes at the top, twisting, grunting and heaving over the last half-meter. It's a good thing I gave up dignity I needed another eternity to detach all those little cams and pins and clamps and rollers from the rope, so I could stumble along to the next climb my gear clanking like a herd of cowbells : Not surprisingly, I brought up the rear leaving the cave Peter and Susie were de-rigging and coiling rope, and I was just plodding along. Fresh air brushed my cheek, and I looked up to see a streak of darkening blue sky. It was just after 7:00P.M. The sun was setting, the campfire cracking, and beers flowing I wasted no time pouring one or two down my parched gullet I had handed my big water bottle off to John when it wouldn't fit in that useless fanny pack, and had nursed a pint bottle for the seven-hour excursion. Being used to at least a couple of quarts of water a day, this was serious deprivation. Several brews later, I quit complaining. Clean clothes, backrubs, a splendid feast prepared by Chef Ediger, and I was one happy camper. Peter and Susie had brought a guitar and the most exquisite mandolin. Terry whipped out her flute, and a tambourine appeared. We made like music, like wow, we sounded like angels to MY ears I was entering that blissed out state I get into following a nice cave trip. I think it's the reason why people keep asking me to come along, even though I don't have much gear and don't know where I'm going or what might happen when I get there. I LIKE IT all so much, my cheek muscles ache nearly as much as my leg muscles the next day, from smiling and laughing. We sang to the stars and watched the lightning approaching from the West We tried to remember all the words to the Rocky Horror Picture Show. As the wind picked up, we stowed things pretty much away, and turned in. Later that night, Winter arrived: It's a good thing John staked the tent down. It billowed and buffeted and heaved at its moorings like a spinnaker in a 30-knot wind It rained raindrops as big as marbles, and lightning did what lightning does, which is mainly keep me awake. This went on till almost dawn, when I got a little rest. We stumbled around in a gusty, chill morning, drying out this and that. I mooched extra clothes and hot liquids We were 90% ready to pack the truck when the rain started again, so we slung stuff in promptly, climbed aboard, and headed back to Austin. The rain got downright serious from time to time, but we stayed reasonably cozy in the caver vehicle extraordinaire, which didn't leak much. Some Bright-Eyes chirped, "Say, this is the longest this truck has ever run without a breakdown!" Just to add to our appreciation of being a million miles from civilization in freezing rain. But we made it back to Austin with no incident, unless you count the return visit to Diary Queen and subsequent ice cream cone fight with my brothe1 Still dirty with that specially nice cave mud, I slid back i1 tlie saddle and headed North. Odds and t=nd The TEXAS CAVER would like to welcome these Texa cavers to the ranks of the NSS: Joann DeLuna, 3219 Hitching Post, San Antonio, TX 78217 (NSS 33294R) 512-822-6743 Jonathan Hazelton, Box 512, Graham, TX 76046 (NSS 33342R) Steve Keselik, RR3, Box 263VK, Bastrop, TX 78602 (NSS 33265R) J Travis Kinchen, 812 Timberhill, Hurst, TX 76053 (NSS 33262R) Cristin Lewis, 3102 Highland Terrace W, Austin, TX 78731 (NSS 33202A) 512-452-1798 John Rainey, 13018 Fitzhugh Rd, Austin, TX 78736 (NSS 33178R) 512-288-2343 Don Wiggins, Apt #814, 11660 Huebner, San Antonio, TX 78230 (NSS 33215R) 512-692-9231 Joel & Vickie Williams, HC 60, Box 394, Graham, TX 76046 (NSS 33328R & 33329F) The cavers listed below have recently moved to Texas they're in your area you may wish to contact them. Ken Akerman, 2511 N Stanton St, El Paso, TX Ernest Edge, Jr, 306 Sedora, Friendswood, TX 77546 Note the following address changes: Ellen Allen, Apt #2056, 1818 Estrada Pky, Irving, TX 75061-8289 Jim Bryan, Apt #152, 3180 Cain RD, College Station TX 77845 Dave Doolin, c/o 12128 Gln Lk Dr, Ft Wayne, IN 468 l4 David Feemster, 2603 Central Drive, Big Spring, TX 79720 Frank Hall, RR 2, Box 11A, Georgetown, TX 786269772 Ronnie Harrison, Apt #803, 2425 Cromwell Cir, Aust n TX 78741-6018 Sharon Lytle, 3932 Bunting Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76107-2611 Mack Pitchford, 2107B, Alta Vista Ave, Austin, TX 78704, 512-445-4364 Jesse Tarin, Box 1052, Bastrop, TX 78602, 512-321-0264 40 April1991 The Texas Ca: 1e1


Whi11Pf)f)l Cave Vr-f)je<:t I?Ul!V II What: Map and Dig in Whirlpool Cave Where: Whirlpool Cave in scenic Austin, Texas When: Second weekends of July, Aug. and Sept. Why: Digs and floods have changed the cave recently. The Geology and Air Flow indicates there is much more cave. We could tunnel through into the Barton Springs Main Drain and scoop Major Booty. Bring survey equipment and gloves for digging. Camping at the cave will be provided. There is a one time $2.00 registration fee for project supplies There is work for all, just show up. For more information call Jim Wolff (512) 444-4203, Lee Jay Graves (512) 326-1297 or William Russell (512) 453-4774. To reach the cave go one block west from MoPac on William Cannon to light at Brush Country, turn left (south) to 4-way stop at Convict Hill Road. Go straight ahead under MoPac bridge, cross creek on curved bridge. Turn left across curb before houses (200 feet past bridge). Keep left into preserve. Look for TCMA signs. Minutes of the TSA Meeting at 1990 TOTR on October 14th 1. Secretary's Report: None, last meeting at the Spring Convention was only 3 minutes long. 2. Treasurer's Report: Caver is out of money due to the $10.00 per year subscription rate and increased printing costs. Chairman Doug Allen (nominated by Mike Walsh) Vice ChairmanLee Jay Graves Secretary -Mary Standifer Treasurer Cathy Winfrey 6. Oren Tranbarger suggests incorporation for liability purposes. 7. Open discussion ofTSA's involvement, or lack thereof, in conservation issues. Bill Elliott, Butch Fralia would like to see more involvement. Linda Palit suggested forming a cave conservation committee. Doug Allen agreed too. 8. Meeting adjourned. (submitted by Mary Standifer, TSA Secretary). Minutes of the TSA Meeting, December 11 1990 1. Discussion of renewal of Memorandum of Understanding with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. General feeling seems to be against. Gill Ediger reports that Ron Ralph says TP&Wo would like to drop it. Scott Rote is TSA liaison. 2. Other issues to be brought up in TP&WD meeting: a. Kickapoo Caverns commercialization: we can help with designing tours and walkways, etc. b. Devil's Sinkhole : How can we best approach them on recreational usage. c. Gorman's Cave: will it be gated, how, where? a. A motion was passed (unanimously) to raise TSA dues to $15.00 per year ASAP. 3. The Texas Caver cost; how can we reduce it? b. Mike Walsh suggested raising money through fund-raising events, coke sales, raffles, etc. 3 Safety & Rescue Report: None. 4 Publications Report: $230.00 in fund (?). a. Ed Sevcik said sales okay. b. Mike Walsh suggested raising price of books. c. Mike Walsh said My Mommy Was A Caver problem is solved. t Election of officers was held. a. Do half-tones ourselves at Gill's or pay someone. b. Do our own paste-up. Gill volunteered his light table. 4. Fund raising possibilities. a. What about more patches b. Official t-shirt 5 Non-profit status is not what we have, we have a tax ID number. Cathy Winfrey is working on it. 6. Meeting adjourned. (submitted by Mary Standifer, TSA Secretary). T. ; Texas Caver April 1991 41


Minutes from the TSA winter business meeting held at Whirlpool Cave, January 1991 1. Doug Allen called the meeting to order at 10:30 A.M., 1/27/91 Austin, Texas. Officers present, Doug Allen, Chairman, Cathy Winfrey, Treasurer. 2. Reports: Treasurer-Cathy reported the balance of $1000. 50 in one account and $66.00 in a second account. $967.00 was collected at this Winter meeting we will probably net between $550.00 and $650.00 for The Texas Caver. Secretary -Doug Allen read the minutes of the OTR meeting. The minutes were amended by Carl Ponebchek's request to reflect $190.00 was collected by passing the hat to help The Texas Caver. Standing Committees Doug announced the dissolution of all committees and dismissal of all committee chairpersons. New committees will be appointed. Conservation Committee-No report-new chairman will be appointed at a future time. Publications -No report -Ed Sevcik will continue as chairman. Logo Committee-Jay Jorden reported that the Logo Fund and Committee had been dissolved. Remaining monies were sent to Gill Ediger and were used to print T -shirts. All patches produced have been sold including 10 sold at Winter Meeting for $4.00. All agreed patches have a good profit margin (cost less than $1.00 each to produce). Linda Palit suggested we use funds from TSA account to purchase more patches rather than set up a new Logo Fund. Carl Ponebshek moved (and Linda Palit seconded) that we buy 100 patches to sell at TSA functions. Motion passed. Jay Jorden will again be Logo Committee Chairman and handle the purchase of patches. Rescue & Techniques Committee No report, Bob Cowell, past chairman, was not present. Doug Allen will appoint new chairperson. 3. Temporary Committees: TPWD Liaison Committee-Scott Rote was removed as chairman -Terry Holsinger was appointed to, and accepted this position at the Cave Task Force meeting at Gorman Falls in December 1990. Terry reported that TP&WD wants information on Colorado Bene Project wrapped up -project will continue. New continued projects include Big Bend Ranch State Natural Area (in future) and finishing surveys descriptions and recommendations for Hill Country State Natural Area. Texas Caver -Not enough TSA funds to cover Caver for 1991. Keith -December 1990 issue printed ana mailed. TSA owes $23.00 for expenses. Oren. February issue is completed and turned in Approximate expense is $436. 00. Donations would bt appreciated. Both editors requested articles. 4. Old Busi ness : Caver Costs and funding -Linda Palit asked about status of the TSA Brochure to be distributed to grottos to solicit TSA membership and Caver subscriptions Doug reported a brochure was produced a few years ago but needs to be updated. Linda Palit agreed t o take care of updating this brochure. Suggestions to cut costs -1. "Caver" assistance committee -Austin and San Antonio based to help with pre-press work: paste u p stripping and halftones. Could save up to $80. 00 per issue. 2. Volunteers to assist Editors with typ ing errands, etc. 3. Cut full bleed cover -Doug reported t hat Priority Copy gave us the lowest bid on printing the Caver and will treat it as a regular job -but does 1 t want to do full bleed cover. Discussion -Someone suggested we have Terry Rai l e s do the covers and the print shop do the insides. Ca 1 y Winfrey pointed out this would create another ster in collating. Bill Russell wants to keep full bleed cov rs (as do most present) and suggests timely mate1 a! (announcements of meetings and events) be kept 1 u t of the Caver to solve problems with Terry s timeliness. Carl Ponebshek suggested we do m < r e advance planning for events to be announced in 1 1e Caver to prevent the extra expense of special mailin : s Doug Allen and Cathy Winfrey both stated the spec a mailings are expensive and suggest expediti 1 g production of the Caver and reducing it's cost JY having the membership do as much pre-pr< 3S preparation as possible Terry Holsinger stated tl1t $130.00 would purchase 100 sheets of film to prodt halftones (we have TSA members beside Terry Rair who can do this). Linda Palit moved TSA make funds available to b I Y materials to produce halftones. Oran Tranbar1 42 April 1991 The Texas Cat r


seconded; the motion passed. Also Doug Allen wants to push sales of back issues. We need to centralize location of these issues and bring them to meetings to be sold for $3.00 each. Doug reported people are willing to do this. Mike Walsh (TCMA) still does not have all My Mommy Was A Caver purchased at TOTR. Doug will pursue this. 5. New Business: Upcoming projects Ron Ralph reported the TP&W would like to see the Hill Country State Natural Area Project, begun a few years back, finished. 900 acres for the Park have been acquired since that time and need to be walked to locate caves there and survey them. Cave surveys from original study area need to be finished up, Photo's taken, inventories of caves and recommendations for management given. TSA is interested. Terry Holsinger, Carl Ponebshek, and Doug Allen will work on organizing this project. Ron also conveyed TP&W is interested in help with Big Bend Ranch State Natural Area. It has 300,000 acres, mostly igneous with limestone areas, two mountain ranges and several streams. It is only open to public on a very limited basis (bus tours only). Doug seconded, and the motion passed. Non Profit Status Cathy Winfrey reported the TSA now has a federal tax ID number and can now apply for (501C) Non-Profit Corporation status. TCMA is completing this process and will assist TSA officers in preparing paperwork. Non-profit status will save TSA much money. NSS Contemporary Cave Use Study Doug Allen showed material received from the NSS on how to set up these projects in Texas Caves. Info is available to grottos and individuals interested. Program monitors cave use by setting up registration logs and includes software for computerizing data and reporting it to the NSS. Cave Vandalism Reward Program-Doug also offered material on this updated NSS program. Interested individuals and grottos can obtain flyers to be posted at caves announcing this reward program which is up to $250.00 to $1000.00 TP&W Memorandum of Understanding is up for renewal. Terry Holsinger is working on this. It is not necessary for us to continue ongoing projects, however, TP&W has had legislation introduced to make TP&W facilities (including buildings, vehicles and equipment) available for use by Park Volunteers at no charge. A memorandum of agreement could be useful in this event. Carl Ponebshek moved and Jay Jorden seconded motion to formalize a new TSA TP&W memorandum of agreement. Motion passed. Mike Walsh welcomed the TSA to Whirlpool Preserve on behalf of TCMA and thanked the TSA for its support in the success of this project. Carl Ponebshek asked that dog owners keep their dogs away from cooking area!! More clean up help would be appreciated. Thanks to Carl for his efforts. Thanks to Lee Jay Graves for organizing this meeting. 6. Meeting adjourned at 11:45 A.M. (Minutes submitted by Carolyn Biegert.) Texas Cave Rescue Update Recently, Doug Allen has appointed Alejandro Villagomez chairman of the TSA Safety and Rescue committee. Alejandro has prepared a TSA volunteer rescue personnel profile information questionnaire which he is circulating among the cavers in Texas. This questionnaire will furnish information to the Texas Cave Rescue call down list. Personal information about Texas Cavers such as their caving experience and special skills are asked for on this survey. Information about rescue equipment such as ropes, rescue litters or other specialized equipment is needed by Alejandro. The old list and the information it provided dates back several years. A lot has changed since the last list was published and distributed. With the increased caving activity, this information is critical in the case of another cave rescue. Write or call Alejandro for the forms, fill them out and return them to him. Texas Cave Rescue Committee Chairman: Alejandro Villag6mez 901 Quail Road Manchaca, TX 78652 (512) 280-5507 jblatS' ntdJ fritnbS'! The Texas Caver April 1991 43


The Texas Caver P.O. Box 8026 Austin, Texas 78713 1991 Caver Calendar of Events May 10-12 May 24-27 May 24-27 June 7-9 June 8-9 June 21-23 June 30 July 5 July 12-14 August 9-11 August 9-11 Aug 29Sep 2 Colorado Bend State Park, Archeo. Hill Country State Natural Area Amazing Maze Survey Project Colorado Bend State Park Inner Space 25 Year Party Powells Map-More-Miles Project NSS Convention, New York State Whirlpool Cave Project Whirlpool Cave Project Amazing Maze Survey Project Original Oldtimers Reunion in WV September 13-15 Whirlpool Cave Project October 11-13 October 18-20 October 25-27 Colorado Bend State Park Texas Caver's Reunion# 14 Powells Map-More-Miles project November 8-1 0 Colorado Bend State Park December 13-15 Colorado Bend State Park BULK RATE U.S. Postage PAID Austin, Texas Permit No. 1181 for More Information Contact Colorado Bend State Park Butch Fralia (817) 346 2039 or Terry Holsinger (512) 445-7340 Hill Country State Natural Area Terry Holsinger ( 512) 445-7340 Misc. TSA events-Doug Allen (512) 476-9031 or Lee Jay Graves (512) 326-1297 Powell's CaveTerry Holsinger (512) 445-7340 or George Veni (512) 558-4403 NSS Convention Thorn Engel, PO Box 22, Singerlands, N.Y. 12159, (518) 765-3699 Amazing Maze Survey Project Mike or Cindy Warton (512) 250-8143 Whirlpool Cave Project-Jim Wolff (512) 444-4203 Bill Russell (512) 453-4774 or Lee Jay Graves (512) 326-1297 Inner Space 25 Year Party Paul Hinderlang (512) 863-5545 Texas Caver's Reunion at Lone Man II Ranch near Wimberly, Gill Ediger (512) 441-0050 Original Oldtimers Reunion in Dailey, W. Virginia Evelyn Bradshaw, Alexandria VA (703) _j

Contents: Troll Cave Dig 1990 / Mike Warton --
Lechugilla Mega-Maze / Jay Jorden --
Eckert James River Bat Cave / Jon Cradit --
A Visit to H. T. Miers Cave / Sue Fogarty Pruitt --
Powell's Project 2/91 / George Veni --
Odds and Ends --
Minutes of TSA Meetings 10-14-90 & 12-11-90 / Mary
Standifer --
Minutes from the TSA winter Business Meeting, January
1991 / Carolyn Biegert.


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