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Spelunking - Introduction to Caving

SUNDAY TRIP PAGE

“Join me for an unique adventure you will not soon forget …caving.”
Caving or “Spelunking” as many prefer, is an adventure sport that combines many different skills into one amazing experience.
Crawling through tight squeezes, wiggling down tunnels on
your belly or your backside, climbing up walls of rock – these are just a few of the challenges you might find in a cave environment.
Pitch darkness is what makes caving so different from other adventure sports - all of the challenges of movement in a confined space are increased when you have nothing more than a headlamp to guide you true.

Whiting's Neck
The wild caves near Shepherdstown, WV give explorers new to the sport an opportunity to descend into timeless caverns that are home to ancient “speleotherms” or cave structures.
Keep your eyes open and you might see tiny “soda straws,” the beginning stages of stalactite growth. “Flowstone” deposits shaped like ribbon candy and wedding cakes, “cave coral” that looks like burnt popcorn. These are just a few of the formations we might find at Whiting’
s Neck.
At the end of the trip, most people are amazed not only by the beauty of the cave structures, but by the challenges that they have overcome.
Whiting’s Neck cave presents the opportunity to rappel and ascend a rope, squeeze through the “keyhole,” (which only works if you figure out the right combination!) and cross over chasms that drop 30 feet.
A trip through Whiting’s Neck Cave is an opportunity to see and learn about the fragile ecosystem within a limestone cave, while also challenging ones-self physically.

The Cave
The Cave is known as Whiting Neck Cave, (an ecologically dead and growth retarded formation). This means in simple terms that the cave is no longer supporting any bio-diversity or growth, so there is nothing for us to harm or to influence. This allows camping in the cave, along with the introduction of our person biodiversity when we go into the system.
The caves are on WV public land, and therefore open to the public to use at will.
While the cave itself is on a small stretch of public land, the surround area is not, and is a nature preserve. Therefore we must park in the lot and walk to the entrance.
The cave is roughly a .8 mile in horizontal gain and has multitudes of pyrite and carbon deposits to check out. It’s a granite construction (which means no shifting) and is wet as all caves are, but has no flowing water.
There is a grotto in the back that all the camping is done in.
Nice place really...

SAFETY DETAILS:
This cave is well traveled and used. While it is not a commercial cave with lighting, there is clear evidence of multiple uses and is a very popular trip.
While there are small keys and crawls, there is no space on the cave that is less than 12 inches across any amount of space. Aka, you aren't going to get stuck in this cave.
The cave is wet, but there is no running water, so there are no concerns of safety there.
This cave is VERY well mapped and has no exteriors leads to other caverns. Aka, there is only one way in and out so you can't get lost...
I will also be following proper LNT and caving guidelines in ICE (ICE- In Case of Emergency). A contact person will be established with knowledge of exact time of departure and number of people along with ETA return date, with GPS Cords and local EMS services contact information.
This isn't to say that anything will happen, but with all serious adventures safety is paramount.
I wouldn't take people in there if I didn't think it was safe.
Gear Require: *MUST HAVE*
1.- Head light (This is a safety issue that has always been drilled)
2.- Helmet - Any type will do, bike, climbing, whit straps so stay in place.
3.- Knee pads are a must, I will recommended hard shell.
4.- Dirty/old clothes that you do not mind getting very dirty and wet. (Need to be long sleeve and long pants of any type.
5. Change of clothes (warm) to change into when you get out.
6. Snacks- as we will be in the cave roughly 6-7 hours
7. 1-2 liters of water per person.
8. Change of Socks
9. Head covering/hat/jacket- You will want it when you stop, as it gets really cold when not moving.
10. Small towel
11. Small pack to put gear in.
This trip doesn't really require anything that you can't get anywhere and there isn't any need for heavy camping gear at exception of rope and climbing harness which I do provide.

This is a straight up bad ass trip.
I like to call these hikes "interest hikes"

Whiting’s Neck cave is a bat habitat in the fall and winter, as
well as home to frogs, crickets, spiders, and the occasional shrew.
When temperatures drop outdoors, the cave maintains a steady 50-55 degrees, making the cave warm in winter (and cool in summer).
Itinerary:
Meet a Rockvile Metro Station at 8:30 AM
9:45 am Arrive at Yankauer Preserve
10:00 am Hike to cave
10:20 am Unload, assign equipment and safety talk
10:30 am Enter cave and exploration
2:30 pm Rotate to next cave or lower chamber using rope, we will go down straight to hell 30 feet.
5:00 pm Exit caves and back to parking lot
6:00 Drive back home.
IMPORTANT NOTE:
If you are claustrophobic this trip is NOT for you.

See you there!
Please email me with any questions.
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CARPOOL:
Don't forget if you want a ride or are willing to offer a ride – be a friend to the environment, save money, and make friends by just posting a message!!
Have a ride: Please post where you are coming from, what time, and how many spots you have.
Need a ride: Post that you need a ride and contact any offers via e-mail for those that are offering rides.
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Yankauer Preserve GPS coordinates:
[masked],[masked]
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NOTE: Payment to be off-line on the meetup spot.
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Pictures from last trip:
https://picasaweb.google.com/116554298799035819637/SpelunkingIntroductionToCavingDec92012
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Join or login to comment.

  • Darwin

    How is everyone filling today? Can you still walk?

    March 25, 2013

    • Emmanuel G.

      I taught a 6 hour podium style lesson. On my feet all day... I didn't say it was easy though

      March 25, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Really wish I could've gone! I hope this trip is planned again in the near future!

    March 25, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Sore.... everywhere.... feels great.

    March 25, 2013

  • Jeremy

    Thanks, Darwin! Awesome trip!

    March 24, 2013

  • Darwin

    Thank you all for coming, hope you did enjoy the trip.

    March 24, 2013

  • Darwin

    In my kitchen ready to cook...2 filet's of pork chops.

    March 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I picked up Panera on the drive home :)

    March 24, 2013

  • Emmanuel G.

    Eating Mexican!!!

    March 24, 2013

  • Darwin

    If you need to contact me:[masked]

    March 24, 2013

  • Rachel

    Hey there, turns out I have to work tomorrow on my proposal. Where do I send the money for the trip?

    March 23, 2013

    • Darwin

      You don't have to if you are not in it.

      March 24, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Woke up sick this morning :( I hope to make the next trip!!

    March 23, 2013

  • Emmanuel G.

    I'm looking at knee pads right now, should I go with hard roller blade pads or soft pads?

    March 23, 2013

  • Emmanuel G.

    Woah I didn't think I was going to get off the wait list, cool :)

    March 23, 2013

  • Darwin

    Please guy's be on time, we will star moving at 8:30 sharp.
    Depending where you are coming from, have in mind that maybe there will be some delay on metro because of track work so leave your place a little bit early.

    March 23, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Doesn't look like I can make it, hopefully I can make the next one.

    March 21, 2013

  • Rachel

    Always wanted to do this!

    March 20, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Can't make it after all. Look forward to joining a future trip though!

    March 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Just to be clear, we are expected to bring all of our own equipment, correct?

    March 19, 2013

    • Darwin

      What is specify in gear list on red.

      March 19, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I will only be able to go if I could hitch a ride with someone. Any open spots?

    March 17, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      I'm coming from Centreville, VA- where are you?

      March 18, 2013

    • Darwin

      @ Jenny Yi - You can take the metro to Rockville and carpool from there, that won't be an issue.

      March 18, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I would be completely new at this. I assume from the trip title that this should be ok?

    March 17, 2013

  • Darwin

    There are 2 trips, one for Saturday 23 and the second for Sunday 24, make sure which day you are sign in on.

    March 15, 2013

9 went

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