Cave Conservationist

The Newsletter of Cave Conservation and Management

Volume 15 | No. 1 | April 1, 1996


Published by the NSS Section on Cave Conservation and Management


Endangered Bats, Lechuguilla, Cave Access, Cave Inventory, NOLS Caving Program, Alaska Timber Salvage, Crystal Cave Restoration, Mexican Cave Development, Dan yr Ogof Access, Chilliwack Valley

The Cave Conservationist is the official publication of the Conservation and Management Section of the National Speleological Society. Distribution is free to members of the Section. Section membership costs $5 annually and should be mailed to the Secretary. (A membership form for your convenience is included on page 17.) Additional complimentary copies are distributed on a temporary basis at the discretion of the Section to NSS members, internal organizations, cave owners, and others involved in cave conservation projects. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the either the Section or the NSS and should be attributed to the author or, in the case of uncredited articles, to the Editor.

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Evelyn Bradshaw, 10826 Leavells Road, Fredericksburg, VA 22407-1261.

SUBMISSIONS: Articles and other Cave Conservationist correspondence should be sent to the Editor. Submissions on computer disks should be made with 3.5" IBM compatible diskettes, . Microsoft Word, Word Perfect 5.0-3, or straight ASCII format is preferred. Do not format materials for multiple columns! Diskettes will not be returned unless requested. Arrangements may be made for transmission via modem; call or write the publisher for details. Or send an e-mail message, or your article, to the Publisher via the Internet to rstitt@wingedseed.com. Note: if you send diskettes or articles to the Publisher, be sure to notify the Editor that you have done so, and send him a hard copy.

Copyright 1997 NSS Conservation and Management Section, except as noted. Internal organizations of the National Speleological Society may reprint any item first appearing in the Cave Conservationist so long as proper credit is given and a copy of the newsletter containing the material is mailed to the Editor. Other organizations should contact the Editor.

Printed by members of the D.C. Grotto and the Potomac Speleological Society.

Cover illustration is by Paul Griffiths, of the Quatsino Resurgence on Vancouver Island, BC, Canada. For more details see page 3.

Visit our World Wide Web site on the Internet at http://www.halcyon.com/samara/nssccms/.

NATIONAL SPELEOLOGICAL SOCIETY
Conservation & Management Section Officers

Chairman and Publisher: Rob Stitt
1417 9th Ave. West
Seattle
, WA 98119

(206)
283-2283 rstitt@wingedseed.com

Editor and Vice-Chairman: Jay R. Jorden,
11201 Country Road 132
Celina, TX 75009-2527
(214)382-2458
jjorden@mcimail.com

Secretary-Treasurer: Evelyn Bradshaw,
10826 Leavells Road
Fredericksburg, VA 22407-1261

(703)898-9288
ebradshw@interserf.net

Directors at Large: Mel Park
1541 Peabody Ave.
Memphis, TN 38104
(901)272-9393 mpark@utmem1.utmem.edu
George N. Huppert
1830 Green Bay St.
La Crosse, WI 54601
(608)787-0499
Huppert@uwlax.edu


Table of Contents


Table of Contents

Notes from the President

THE ENDANGERED INDIANA BAT (Myotis sodalis) PART II-STATE-BY STATE TRENDS

BLM/YATES ENERGY SETTLEMENT

WESTERN REGION GRANT

CAVE ACCESS CONUNDRUM

WHAT'S IN A CAVE INVENTORY?

MANAGEMENT OF THE FUTURE

NATIONAL OUTDOOR LEADERSHIP POLICIES

THE NOLS CAVING PROGRAM

PROPOSED SALVAGE SALE IN ALASKA RAISES QUESTIONS

Text of Letter to Chairman of House Appropriations Committee

CRYSTAL CAVE (California) RESTORATION PROJECT

MENDING SPELEOTHEMS FOLLOWING MOVIE FILMING

SPELEOJUNKESIS

OPPORTUNITY OR TRAVESTY? Developer plans Spielberg-type park in world-famous Mexican caves

Wanna Rent a Cave?

NEWS OF THE NATURE CONSERVANCY (Virginia Chapter)

DAN YR OGOF (Wales) ACCESS MANAGEMENT

CHILLIWACK VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA, Canada


Notes from the President


Well, its been a busy Spring. Several conservation issues have been resolved, others have risen their heads, and I have gotten behind on a lot of things. Jay Jorden has recently moved, and is doing a Speleo-Digest, so he hasn't sent me much stuff. Thankfully Evelyn Bradshaw has been gleaning newsletters. I have a bunch of stuff from the Internet, also.

Issues have been developing rapidly-too rapidly to be resolved within the time framework of this publication. I haven't even been able to keep the Web Page updated enough to keep on top of things. Fortunately Dave Jagnow, NSS Conservation Chair, is on the Internet now and is keeping on top of most of the issues. Principal issues that have been dealt with recently include: Puna Caves development in Hawaii (resolved by Halliday), Tongass Logging issues (vetoed by President Clinton, but it will be back); Vandalism in Mammoth Cave National Park (a Judge was to sentence several violators on May 22, and I haven't heard the results yet.); Yates petroleum/NPS issues at Lechuguilla (a negotiated resolution-whether it's the right one, or whether it will stick, remains to be seen); and finally, the general attack by Radical Republicans in Congress on environmental issues in general.

The NSS can't deal with all of these issues alone, and in fact has not taken a major role in fighting the issues in Congress-I suspect that Dave is up to his neck in other issues without getting directly involved with the Congressional issues. That means that if you are concerned about those issues, you need to support the other organizations who are carrying the fight. See the article see "Text of Letter to Chairman of House Appropriations Committee," later in this document on page 10.
Rob Stitt


THE ENDANGERED INDIANA BAT (Myotis sodalis)
PART II-STATE-BY STATE TRENDS


John R. Marquart, Ph.D.
Department of Chemistry
Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL 61920

In this article I will give data concerning the populations of endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) in the 11 states which still seem to have populations: Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia. I will also attempt to use the limited data that I possess to predict whether each state is showing gains or losses in these populations.

The 1960s and 1970s saw huge losses with populations starting in the hundreds of thousands, dropping to near extinction. For example, Mari Murphy wrote in an article "Restoring Coach Cave" (Kentucky)1: "Hundred Dome (cave in SW Kentucky), was once the winter home for 100,000 Indiana bats (Myotis sodalis), now one of America's endangered bats. By 1975, however, their numbers had plummeted to about 4,500, and in the winter of 1993, biologists found only 17. What happened?" The article goes on to describe how a poorly designed gate was installed to keep unpaying visitors out of this commercial cave. The altered the air flow and temperature within destroyed the bats. Indiana bats can only survive the winter by hibernating at 40 to 60C (390 to 430F)2; colder, they freeze, and warmer, they do not become torpid enough for body fat reserves to last out the winter. With such a narrow range of tolerance, there aren't many suitable hibernacula2.

In this article, I will be less concerned with these catastrophic losses of 20 to 30 years ago, but rather only with where are we now and where are we going in the near future.

In 1994, I wrote "PART-I-THE PROBLEM"2 of this series in which I summarized many of the physical and social characteristics of the Indiana bat and reasons that it is listed as a federally endangered species. At that time, I promised "PART-II-STATE-BY-STATE TRENDS" (this article). I apologize for the delay in coming out with Part II. This was largely caused by the scarcity of data from which to draw conclusions. A significant amount of population data has now become available, thanks mainly to the 1995 draft revision of the "Recovery Plan for the Indiana Bat" by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service3. While this plan has not yet been finalized, it served as a valuable resource material.


Cover Photo: On Friday, May 24, 1996, Paul Griffiths photographed the Quatsino resurgence (Vancouver Island, BC, Canada) from a helicopter.

Most of the hillside was logged in the sixties so the re-growth is approaching thirty years in age. The successful re-growth above the contact is in a shallower gradient zone (probably thicker soil cover). The bare patches above the contact are much steeper slopes.

The area was broadcast burned for silvicultural purposes. You can make out the charred stumps in the bare zones.

The old-growth volume in this area was greater than 600 m3 per hectare. The current volume in the deforested bare zones is obviously a small fraction of that.

The creek to the right is "Snow Bowl Creek". There is very little slash in the photo...there's lots of debris further upstream!


Bats are very much in the news these days and the public is being made aware that these mammals make important contributions to our human welfare on earth by being the primary natural controllers of insect populations and also by being the main pollinators of important plants in many parts of the world. People, like myself and my neighbors, are paying our respects to these friends-of-man by hanging bat houses in our yards. These are modest efforts at good will, but the major problems that endanger bats, unfortunately, still exist. In 1993, Merlin Tuttle, founder and executive director of Bat Conservation International (BCI) stated in an article titled "Crisis for America's Bats"4: "Some 40 percent of U.S. bat species are federally endangered or are official candidates for such status". In 1994, Pamela Selbert wrote an article for the journal "American Forests"5 entitled "Lockout for Bats" about the protective gating of bat caves in Daniel Boone National Forest, Kentucky. In this article, she quotes John MacGregor, an endangered-species specialist, as follows: "The problem here is that we're looking at the extinction of at least one bat species-the Virginia big-ear - within the next 10 or 15 years if something isn't done to save the only two major remaining populations....Next to go could be the Indiana bat." Here in Illinois, where I live, we do not have Virginia big-ear bats, but we do have Indiana bats. My caving colleagues of the Near Normal Grotto of the National Speleological Society and I (1996 President) are actively participating with BCI and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to do our part to save the Indiana bats here. I am sure that many of you who read my article are doing likewise in your own locals and I applaud you effort.

Many things endanger bats: natural flooding and collapse of caves and mines, poisoning by pesticides and pollutants, loss of habitat by human land development, etc. The major threat to the Indiana bat is, however, its venerability during hibernation. They pack into dense clusters on the ceilings of caves and mines (as many as 300 per square foot)6. How easy it is for vandals to destroy them by the thousands, as has happened in the past. But even the well meaning cave explorer, who "loves bats", can destroy them by just disturbing their sleep and robbing them of the energy storage of their bodies which is barely enough for them to survive the long winter2. As much as I dislike being told that I can't enter a cave or mine, I have come to accept the concept that closure of these must be enforced during hibernation months (usually September through April).

Now for the statistics. Federal bat population data is usually given by state, county, and cave or mine name. However, I do not wish to go into this amount of detail for two reasons. First, the amount of data entered would be cumbersome and second, such data tends to give specifics about locations at which the vulnerable bats reside. That much information is not necessary to view the data for general trends. For these reasons, I have chosen to divide each state into nine sectors. Each is divided horizontally into three regions: north (N), central (C), and south (S) and into three regions vertically: east (E), central (C), and west (W). A given sector is then labeled by the two delineators, such as NE for north-east, SC for south-central, and simply C for central-central. I attempted to classify each county as lying within a given sector. The more rectangular states, like Indiana, lend themselves well to this approach, while states like Kentucky, which is wide in the east and narrow in the west, pose more of a problem. For this reason, my the sector locations can, at best, be treated as approximate.

In the following table, I am tabulating by state and sector, the number of hibernacula studied, the most recent population counts of the Indiana bat (with years when the counts where made), earlier counts before the most recent ones when populations seems to maximize (with years when the counts where made), and my best estimate of how populations are changing as of 1995. Of these data, the recent count is the most reliable indication of where the population stands as of now (although some count data are not very current). The column "EARLIER PEAK" is intended to show some trend as to growth or loss from then to now, but must be taken with a gain of salt. It simply adds maximum counts at different locations often taken during different years. The Indiana bat is known to change locations of hibernacula from year to year and even within a given year so that this type of statistics would tend to magnify the total populations. Therefore, a comparison of the columns "RECENT COUNT" and "EARLIER PEAK" may be expected to exaggerate losses and underestimate gains. Finally, the column "ESTIMATED 1995 ANNUAL CHANGES" is the most questionable. I have tried to look at data for each cave or mine and estimate how much change might be expected to be occurring as of 1995. Sometimes, I am trying to get current changes based upon changes that occurred over a decade or more. I will take a disclaimer, that my statistics are based on the data that I have available and with better data I could do better. None the less, I believe that the overall conclusions are worth consideration as showing overall trends for a sector and the state as a whole.

TABLE OF INDIANA BAT POPULATIONS - CURRENT, PAST, AND PROJECTED*

STATE

SECTOR #

RECENT SITES

PEAK1995 (YEARS(YEARS)

EARLIER COUNT

ESTIMATED ANNUAL CHANGES

AL

NE

1

300(1977)

NA

NA

AL

STATE

1

300

NA

NA

AR

NC

7

920('93-'95)

1710('84-'90)

-11

AR

NW

5

2850('92-'95)

12600('84-'90)

-586

AR

STATE

12

3770

14310

-596

IL

NC

1

532(1995)

655(1993)

30

IL

SE

3

610(1992)

NA

NA

IL

SW

2

3910('91-'92)

400(1987)

-55

IL

STATE

6

5052

?

-25

IN

SC

20

134954('89-'90)

166794('75-93)

8094

IN

SW

4

41607('93-'95)

42329('89-'93)

-1759

IN

STATE

24

176561

209123

6335

KY

NE

1

31400(1995)

140000('62-'75)

-430

KY

NC

2

865('86-'87)

3680(1963)

NA

KY

NW

1

30(1990)

180(1988)

0

KY

CE

17

10090('88-'94)

12940('79-"91)

-350

KY

C

7

9180('87-"95)

28940('60-'89)

-1194

KY

SE

4

3900('87-'94)

10870('87-'90)

-259

KY

SC

1

20(1990)

100(1987)

0

KY

SW

1

310(1990)

400(1981)

-10

KY

STATE

34

55795

297110

-1813

MO

CE

2

330(1995)

18840('75-'79)

-330

MO

C

2

400(1995)

350('92-'93)

NA

MO

SE

7

157986('75-'91)

205160('59-91)

-4857

MO

SC

11

9831('85-'95)

170530('62-"87)

-6510

MO

SW

3

1180('85-'95)

1900('78-'93)

-31

MO

STATE

25

169727

396780

-11728

NY

NE

1

3040(1990)

2180(1989)

860

NY

NC

2

4820(1990)

5090('84-'87)

199

NY

CE

1

290(1989)

170(1988)

120

NY

SE

1

5930(1990)

5630(1989)

300

NY

?

1

100(1991)

90(1989)

5

NY

STATE

6

14180

18700

1484

STATE

SECTOR #

RECENT SITES

PEAK1995 (YEARS(YEARS)

EARLIER COUNT

ESTIMATED ANNUAL CHANGES

PA

C

1

270(1987)

NA

NA

PA

STATE

1

270

NA

NA

TN

NE

6

7810('85-'86)

NA

NA

TN

NC

1

1190(1986)

NA

NA

TN

NW

1

460(1991)

280(1990)

180

TN

CE

2

7110('85-'86)

NA

NA

TN

C

1

10(1991)

3000(1983)

0

TN

STATE

11

16580

NA

NA

VA

SE

2

1350(1987)

720(1982)

74

VA

SW

1

270(1985)

650(1984)

0

VA

?

2

220(1990)

4090('86-87)

0

VA

STATE

5

1840

5460

74

WV

NE

2

200(1991)

220('83-'89)

-21

WV

CE

1

5470(1991)

5140(1989)

165

WV

SE

1

130(1990)

80(1980)

2

WV

STATE

4

5800

5440

144

NATIONAL

129

449875

942438

-6126

 

* References used are "Recovery Plan for the Indiana Bat"3,7,8, "Lockout for Bats"5, "1993 Indiana Bat Census Results" (in Indiana)9, "The Biological Resources of Illinois Caves and Other Subterranean Environments"10, and person communications11.


TRENDS BY STATE:

Alabama-Small population of 399 with status uncertain. Last count (1977) is dated and needs reexamination.

Arkansas-Small population of 3,700 appears to be losing about 597 per year or 16% per year. Colonies need protection and continual monitoring.

Illinois-Small population of 5,052 with relative stability. Protection projects are underway.

Indiana-Significant population of 176,561 showing large gains of 6,335/year. Well documented biennial reports from 1981[9]. Protection projects need to continue.

Kentucky-Significant population of 55,795 showing losses of 1,813/year. This state suffered catastrophic losses in 1960s and 1970s and seems to still have severe losses. Needs continual monitoring and continued effort toward protection, some of which are underway.

Missouri-Significant population of 169,727 with severe losses of 11,728/year. A major hibernaculum (Pilot Knob Mine in SE) with 140,000 Indiana bats has not been monitored since 1978. Present status is unknown since it is unstable and dangerous to enter. If it collapses, all these bats may be lost [12] - Missouri is working toward the survival of the Indiana bat, but current losses indicate that more work is necessary.

New York-Moderate population of 14,180 with significant gain of 1,484/year. Earlier reports had stated that the Indiana bat was extinct east of Indiana/Kentucky. The reestablishment or rediscovery of eastern colonies is good news.

Pennsylvania-Small population of 270 with uncertain status. Needs reexamination.

Tennessee-Moderate population of 16,580 with uncertain status. No counts were found before 1983. More frequent counts are needed.

Virginia-Small population of 1,840 with current small gain of 74/year. However, the population seems stable only in the SE. Other sectors suffered major losses in the 1980s.

West Virginia-Small population of 1,840 with a gain of 144/year mostly in the CE and SE sectors. Most recent data was for 1991. More recent data is needed statewide.

Nationally-Overall population of 449,875 with serious loss of more than 6000/year (1.5% of the total population). More data are needed and more action needs to be taken.

Once again, these conclusions are those of this author only and are based solely upon the limited data sets of population counts that are available me at the time of its writing. It was necessary to perform extrapolations of data to attempt to arrive at the conclusions of trends. With better data, these trends would be better clarified. It is not my intention to berate the efforts currently underway or planned in any local. I only wish to show what I consider to be a serious problem which needs our continued attention. Your comments are welcome by mail or e-mail

(MARQUART@UIUC.EDU).

REFERENCES:

[1] Murphy, Mari 1993. "Restoring Coach Cave" in Bats, Vol. 11, No. 3, Fall 1993, pp. 3-5.

[2] Marquart, J.R. 1994. "The Endangered Indiana Bat (Myotis sodalis) - Part I - The Problem", in Cave Conservationist, Vol. 13, No. 5, December 1, 1994, pp. 3-7.
Note, I will gladly send reprints of Part I to those wishing it either by mail or by email. My address is above and my e-mail address is MARQUART@UIUC.EDU.

[3] U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Interior. 1995. "Recovery Plan for the Indiana Bat" (draft revision), U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.

[4] Tuttle, M.D. 1993. "Crisis for America's Bats" in Bats, Vol. 11, No. 2, Summer 1993, pp. 6-9.

[5] Selbert, Pamela. 1994. "Lockout for Bats" in American Forest, vol. 100, March/April 1994, pp. 45-47.

[6] Gardner, J.E. and Saugey, D. A. 1989. "The Bats of Illinois" in Field Museum of Natural History Bulletin, January 1989, Chicago, IL, pp. 6-15.

[7] U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Interior. 1976. "Recovery Plan for the Indiana Bat", U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.

[8] U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of Interior. 1983. "Recovery Plan for the Indiana Bat", U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C.

[9] Dunlap, K. 1993. "1993 Indiana Bat Census Results" in 1993 Speleo Digest, pp. 437-442.

[10] Webb, D.W., Taylor, S.J., and Krejca, J.K. 1993. "The Biological Resources of Illinois Caves and Other Subterranean Environments", Technical Report 1993 (8) Illinois Natural History Survey Center for Biodiversity, (ILENR/RE-EH-94/06).

[11] Glass, W. D., Natural Heritage Biologist for Illinois Department of Resources. 1995. personal communications.

[12] Thorne, Janet. 1988. "Conservation Dispatches" in NSS News, March 1988, pp. 73-75. (cites item from Meramec Caver, November 1987).


BLM/YATES ENERGY SETTLEMENT


From the Cavers Digest via John Lyles

Date: Mon, 4 Mar 1996

This message is from David Jagnow, NSS Conservation Chairman. It announces the US Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management settlement with Yates Energy of New Mexico, concerning their drilling claims near Lechuguilla Cave.

Cavers:

I just received the following news brief from the BLM via mail. There was no date on this release. It obviously puts their best possible spin on the BLM/Yates Energy settlement. The main problem with this settlement is that they have waived the enhanced drilling stipulations that the Dark Canyon EIS spent so much time and effort to develop. I will comment further when I get additional information:


BLM NEWS ROSWELL DISTRICT, 1717 W. 2nd, ROSWELL, NM 88221 CONTACT: Howard Parman, 505-627-0212

BLM Settlement Enforces Cave Protection Zone

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced today that it has reached an out-of-court settlement with Yates Energy Corporation (Yates) concerning drilling in Dark Canyon near Lechuguilla Cave. In September and November of 1994, Yates filed two lawsuits against BLM claiming that the Record of Decisions for the Dark Canyon Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and four additional applications for permit to drill (APD) constitute a "takings" of beneficial use of Leases NM-62161 and NM-81894. Since these decisions were issued (January 31, 1994 and May 20, 1994), lease NM-81894 has expired.

According to the settlement agreement, the federal government will pay $2.2 million to Yates Energy Corporation, establish a no-surface occupancy restriction for two-thirds of lease NM-62161 (the area within the Cave Protection Zone), and allow drilling from the two locations identified in the Dark Canyon EIS as 1G and 2G. Any well drilled from these locations, must be below the cave-bearing Guadalupe Reef Complex (approximately 3,000 feet deep) before directional drilling will be allowed. A "closed mud" system will be required in addition to some other requirements to protect visual resources. One of the conditions of approval specifies that a BLM inspector be on-site throughout the drilling process.

The settlement resolves controversy of drilling for oil and gas in Dark Canyon while protecting caves on both BLM managed lands and the adjacent Carlsbad Caverns National Park. Lechuguilla Cave, a spectacular cave located within the national park boundaries, is located nearby.

Since the drilling locations are outside the Cave Protection Zone, BLM will apply standard conditions of approval for drilling, casing, on-site monitoring and plugging and abandonment.


WESTERN REGION GRANT


The Western Region has grant money available for scientific research or conservation projects. Past grants have been awarded to Mike Sims for his study of ice deposits in northern California lava tubes and to Southern California Grotto for the printing of "Cave Law" cards, designed to inform individuals and commercial cave visitors about California's Cave Protection law. The money in the Western Region Conservation and Research Grant account has been donated specifically for this purpose and is separate from other Region funds. Each project can receive a maximum of $200, with conservation grants awarded on a "matching fund" basis. For more information contact Roger Mortimer at: Ave. 5, Madera CA 93637 or at: (209)674-7286. (Source: Fall 1994 California Caver.)


CAVE ACCESS CONUNDRUM


Writing in the Feb. 1996 Birmingham Grotto Newsletter, Dave Howell in the "News & Notes" column says: "I did want to discuss a disturbing rumor I heard. It seems that the newly discovered fourth big room in Camp's Gulf can be reached either by a two-hour 'conventional' route or a 10-minute 'shortcut.' In talking with some ... cavers we met, we heard that plans are being made by members of their grotto to blast this shortcut closed. The reasons given varied from 'keeping the riffraff out' to 'minimizing traffic to the nicely decorated fourth room.'

"Can this be true? These reasons as well as any others I can imagine, seem highly questionable. Are we really at the point where we must preserve caves by dynamiting passages? If so, we the caving community--and particularly those of us with explosives in our hands--need to step back and take a hard look at the direction caving is going. Surely there's a better way." (Comments are invited. Send them to Birmingham Grotto Newsletter, P. O. Box 55102, Birmingham AL 35255-0102."


WHAT'S IN A CAVE INVENTORY?


Members of the Glacier Grotto (Alaska) have been inventorying caves in the Tongass National Forest and presenting reports under such topics as: description, special headings (e.g. geology/hydrology or biology or recreational/aesthetic values, as applicable) and finally management recommendations. Others involved in similar inventory work may be interested in the wording of some of their management recommendations:

* This cave is safe enough for directed access although its environs contain numerous hazards including deep pits and the need to travel through a highly karsted clear-cut. Therefore access should be limited to those capable of dealing with these hazards.

* The location of this cave should not be shared with the public because of the rich paleontological and archaeological resources. This cave should be excavated and studied further by specialists. The area has an outstanding pristine outdoor setting.

* We recommend that this cave be classified as limited access. The speleothem are fragile, but since they are located in the upper level of the cave, a careful spelunker could make a trip through this cave with little negative impact. At this point there will be no surface management activities in the near future that will impact this cave.


MANAGEMENT OF THE FUTURE


Editorial by John Chenger

There has been much uproar among some cavers over the recent gating of several Pennsylvania caves. The closure of these sites is a harbinger of the continuing evolution of cave conservation.

There was a time when people crawled thousands of feet into Laurel Caverns and left a carboned signature, an NSS number, or a carbide dump as "proof" they were there. Today, of course, all of this is unacceptable because more and more people got involved, and someone realized that these were bad things.

More and more people are becoming aware of "high adventure" or "exotic" sports such as caving and climbing. Many serious climbers will tell you about "no-bolt" routes, "no-chalk" routes, and most frown upon modifying the cliff face by removing loose rocks.

Although there are more people in caving than ever before, there are also more conservation groups attempting to deal with the growing popularity. Frankly, everyone cannot and will not go caving. Secrecy is only a short term fix, and does not protect already well known caves. Fortunately, all caves offer an easy way to protect themselves. No matter how extensive a cave system, if the entrance is controlled, the entire resource can be protected. [ed.-Not so easy with a cave system that has several entrances and improved techniques for creating artificial entrances.]

Small clubs like the Loyalhanna Grotto do not have money, power, or say over anything large conservation groups do with their land. The Nature Conservancy, Pennsylvania Game Commission, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, and the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources all have experts who are quite capable of designing animal-friendly gates and even creating habitat where there was once none. We should feel proud that there is a natural resource so close to our homes which is significant enough to warrant thousands of dollars for protection.

More and more caves will be donated to or bought by the NSS, Nature Conservancy, Butler Cave Conservation Society, DEP, PGC, Slatyfork Research Center, Laurel Conservancy (Laurel Cavers), Friar's Hole Cave Preserve, etc. and the wave of the future for you and me is to cooperate or be left out. These organizations own caves and they will manage them however they feel is the best way. It is inevitable that all of these organizations will have evolving access policies over the coming years, whether any exist today or not. Grotto members must be able to see that this is where the "sport" of caving is going, and realize that we are standing at the brink of a new age. Working with the conservation groups is the only way to prove to them that cavers are a low-risk potential to a non-renewable resource. We should put what influence we have towards molding professional partnerships with all conservation agencies.

(Source: Loyalhanna Troglodyte, Summer 1995


NATIONAL OUTDOOR LEADERSHIP POLICIES


In an article titled "Caving for Conservation," John Gookin, Curriculum Manager for the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), sets the record straight on certain assertions made by Warren Anderson about NOLS. (Source: Rocky Mountain Caving, Winter 1995)

Warren Anderson's letter (Rocky Mountain Caving, Autumn 1994) regarding "caving for pay" points out valid issues such as safety, conservation, and access that are of vital importance to all cavers. However, his assertions of federal land management agencies corrupted by unscrupulous outfitters and other wild claims does a disservice to the issues at hand and to caving in general. The intention of this article is to correct the misrepresentation of the National Outdoor Leadership School's (NOLS) caving program and point the debate in a more constructive direction.

Anderson asserts that "commercial outfitting in caves will never be safe." This is true to the extent that no activity with inherent risks is ever safe. Indeed, any educational program hoping to teach judgment MUST have genuine risks. How risky is caving compared to other activities? No database of comprehensive caving use and accident information exists. While the NSS does an admirable job of publishing the highly educational American Caving Accidents, we cavers are still a long way from having statistically significant information. Until we cavers gather objective baseline data, Anderson's contention that educational caving is unsafe remains moot.

I appreciate Anderson's description of NOLS as "arguably the most responsible commercial outfitter in America." But when he mentions numerous searches and rescues and a group size that is woefully exaggerated, I feel it is important to set the record straight. NOLS's caving safety record is excellent. We have had one search and no agency rescues in 25 years. We did use a SKED to haul out a student with a sprained knee once, and with their own rescue cache. While we are suitably concerned about the famous Rachel Cox search in Wind Cave National Park, we are also proud of how we handled our responsibilities and the in-depth analysis that followed. Our wilderness education safety statistics were the first of their kind to be studied by an independent researcher and published in the medical literature. Data gathered by insurance companies, the National Speleological Society (NSS), and the Association for Experiential Education clearly show our record to be exceptional.

We have never caved in groups of 30. NOLS' caving courses currently have an average of 11 students and three instructors. Anderson's high number of 30 may have been taken from past permits which allowed that number, but our courses are half that size in the campground, and far less underground. In fact, it is uncommon to find a NOLS course with more than 12 student.

Anderson mentions that organizations such as NOLS need to enroll "anybody who will pay." This statement, which seems to be the crux of Anderson's argument, clearly demonstrates a lack of understanding of how organizations like NOLS operate. As an educational institution we could not exist for long if we simply allowed anyone on our courses, regardless of their motivation, medical condition, or other constraints. Instead, over the years we have steadily increased the sophistication of our student screening. Coupled with our attention to screening has been a deliberate effort to offer a choice to students so they can decide if they want to cave or not. This commitment to both proper screening and lowering the profile of caving is a result of the constructive debate regarding cave conservation facilitated by the NOLS.

Anderson mentions an "unnatural relationship" with the Bureau of Land Management and undue pull with the National Park Service. We are proud to be a committed partner with the federal land management agencies. We care about the lands on which we operate, and we participate--as anyone is allowed and encouraged to do--in the land management planning process. However, we have no special ability to affect land management decisions and we certainly have not striven to seek short-term expediencies for our program at the expense of long-term conservation. Our involvement in planning processes is consciously based on our commitments first to conservation and second to education as an important and valid use of public land. NOLS operates under the discretion of land managers and we routinely adjust our use per their request. NOLS continually abides by more stringent federal regulations than private cavers do. We do not mind being held to a higher standard since we view access by any organization as a privilege and not a right.

Anderson makes the legitimate statement that non-cavers cause increased impact; this statement justifies caver education programs. Educational use of caves can accomplish two goals: first, to train cavers to be responsible in using the resource (we cavers all started as beginners) and second, to build the constituency for cave preservation. While the number of cavers is important to regulate, we firmly believe that habits count. Cavers with strong conservation ethics and proper skills have less of an impact on cave resources than uncommitted cavers, whatever their level of experience. Protective legislation like the Endangered Species Act, the Wilderness Act, and the Federal Cave Resources Protection Act are perpetually under attack and thus the increasing need for a committed constituency to fight for continuing these protections.

Schools like NOLS can contribute more to the caving community than just our field course program. As a non-profit educational institution, we feel a responsibility to assist land managers in reaching others. As a partner in the national "Leave No Trace" program, we developing a public domain "Caving Skills and Ethics" booklet and a training curriculum for federal land managers. The upcoming Bureau of Land Management national cave brochure displays the important work that can come from NOLS, the NSS and the BLM working cooperatively.

We hope the caving community takes a hard look at the many important "cave-for-pay" issues and continues to examine safety, conservation. and access. Viewing any issue this varied as black and white will never be fruitful. Short-sighted condemnation of one group of users by another will only distract us from the real issues and alienate people. The big issues on the horizon are larger than any one faction of wildland users can handle and we will work best if we work together.

References

Hunt, Jasper Ph.D. The Ethics of Risk, Proceedings of the 1994 Wilderness Risk Managers' Conference, pp. 82-89.

Gentile, James M.D. ,et al. Annals of Emergency Medicine 21.7 July 1992, pp. 110-188.


THE NOLS CAVING PROGRAM


Mike Bailey, NOLS Caving Coordinator

The National Outdoor Leadership School (NOS) has been teaching responsible caving skills and ethics for 25 years, as an optional part of our semester program. Students first successfully complete a month-long mountain section (hiking, not caving) where they practice the intricacies of low impact camping and environmental ethics. After the mountain section they move on to three to four other skills areas, which may include caving.

Our two-week caving progression begins with a number of above ground classes and extensive practice to prepare the students to enter caves with a sense of body awareness, familiarity with their equipment, safety alertness, and knowledge of the fragile cave environment. Obstacle courses emphasize careful movement more than tight squeezes: we often use teetering eggs as "formations." Initial caving trips are short, allowing students to remain alert enough to focus on careful technique. As student abilities improve, the trips increase in length accordingly. Our staff incorporates daily conservation and safety messages as awareness and mobility increase. Students are supervised and are only on trips that match their abilities; a student is never forced to go caving for the sake of caving. The student to instructor ratio is less than 4:1.

NOLS consciously selects the caves we use with the desire to keep beginning students in more durable and impacted areas, before visiting more sensitive areas of a cave. In certain caves we limit ourselves from ever entering pristine or delicate areas.

The caves we use must have typical risks encountered by cavers so we can help students develop judgment. Judgment is "a comparative evaluation based on prior experiences," so we do not depend on student judgment until their experience base and proper habits are demonstrated. We are currently trying to slowly shift to more durable caves, specifically trying to use more active vadose caves with seasonal flushing.

During caving courses, NOLS routinely teaches classes on speleogenesis, karst hydrology, speleothems, cave biology, caving hazards, first aid, cave search and rescue, cave photography, cave conservation organizations, land management, and surveying. In areas with vertical caves, we include above-ground training in ascending and descending techniques before applying these skills underground. Additional classes are taught covering vertical self rescue techniques, Cave managers often visit courses and talk about cave management concerns. Managers frequently take advantage of the manpower to perform many types of service work, including clean-up and photo-monitoring. Important themes on any NOLS course are safety of the individual, care of the environment, and expedition self-sufficiency. NOLS founder Paul Petzoldt says it is criminal to teach wilderness skills without the associated safety and ethics; we still teach by this maxim.

NOLS students are offered a comprehensive education in caving. Sometimes they continue caving after their course, and involve themselves in the protection of cave resources. After any NOLS course, we expect our students to go home with the knowledge, skills, and habits to effectively supervise the safety and ethics of their peers; that is what outdoor leadership is. More importantly, our semester students go home with the teaching strategies to others in a positive manner, so those people might pass the ethics on again. In this manner, the constituency for wildland conservation grows.

(Source, Rocky Mountain Caving, Winter 1995


PROPOSED SALVAGE SALE IN ALASKA RAISES QUESTIONS


In February 1996, Marcel LaPerriere, President of the Glacier Grotto, wrote to the Thorne Bay Ranger District of USFS, Thorne Bay, Alaska, regarding a proposed Heceta Island Sawfly Salvage Sale. Ketchikan members of the grotto had held two meetings subsequent to a presentation to the group about the sale. They reached consensus on the following (and we quote):

1. High Vulnerability karsted lands, and adjacent lands must be protected. The 1988 Cave Resources Protection Act clearly mandates the USDA/USFS to protect all caves under their jurisdiction. Therefore, no cutting of dead, dying, or green trees should take place, if it will expose the USFS to violation of the above mentioned law.

2. If any cutting does take place it must be monitored during, and after to make sure that no harm comes to any caves, or high vulnerability karsted lands.

3. A minimum number of roads should be built. Again the road building needs to be monitored to make sure there is no impact to caves.

4. If any cutting does take place, the results of that cutting must be studied. The USFS must make sure that no further damage is done by cutting at this time. (In the EMS field there is a saying, "Do no further harm," this should be applied to all salvage sales!)

5. We feel that the poor regeneration on karsted lands needs to be studied. Numerous times our members have observed the poor regeneration on karsted lands on Heceta, and throughout the Tongass.

6. We feel the question of wildlife must also be addressed in regards to karst and caves. What impact to fish and wildlife does cutting on karst have? Is further cutting in the Bald Mountain area going to impact the resurgences that are salmon spawning streams? We feel more research needs to be done on the hydrology of the subterranean system. We believe the only way this can be successfully done is with dye tracing. We strongly feel that the major insurgences between Bald Mountain and Timber Knob must be dye traced.

Several of our members also feel that the USFS should do a complete EIS for all of Heceta Island. I personally believe that Heceta has been pecked at too many times, and that the cumulative effects of all this pecking hasn't been analyzed.

Please consider our points when planning this salvage cut. Also please remember, "Do no further harm." [end quote]

[This was reprinted in the Alaskan Caver, February 1996, newsletter of the Glacier Grotto.


Text of Letter to Chairman of House Appropriations Committee


CENTER FOR MARINE CONSERVATION

DEFENDERS OF WILDLIFE

ENVIRONMENTALDEFENSE FUND

ENVIRONMENTAL WORKING GROUP

FRIENDS OF THE EARTH

MINERALPOLICY CENTER-MT. GRAHAM COALITION

NATIONAL PARKS AND CONSERVATIONASSOCIATION

NATURAL RESOURCES DEFENSE COUNCIL

NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION

PACIFIC COAST FEDERATION OF FISHERMEN'S ASSOCIATIONS

PACIFICRIVERS COUNCIL

SIERRA CLUB

SIERRA CLUB LEGAL DEFENSE FUND

SOUTHEASTALASKA CONSERVATION COUNCIL

TROUT UNLIMITED

THE WILDERNESS SOCIETY

U.S. PUBLIC INTEREST RESEARCH GROUP

WESTERN ANCIENT FOREST CAMPAIGN


April 22, 1996

The Honorable Bob Livingston, Chair
House Appropriations Committee
H-218, Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Chairman Livingston:

We are writing in response to your challenge to demonstrate that H.R. 3019, the Omnibus Appropriations bill, no longer contains provisions harmful to the environment.

Contrary to your charges of "environmental fear mongering" and claims in your press release of April 17 that concerns about the bill have been addressed, the controversial policy riders have not been altered in any substantial way. As we have stated on numerous occasions in the past year, these legislative provisions are comprehensive changes that suspend numerous environmental laws and inflict irreparable damage upon our water, parks, forests, wildlife, public health, and economy. They have no place in an appropriations bill.

We commend President Clinton for his strong and courageous stance opposing these riders and remind you that the American public stands strongly behind the President on this issue.

Riders addressed in your press release:

Tongass National Forest: The Tongass Rider blocks efforts to protect the Tongass National Forest, the world's largest remaining temperate rain forest, from unsustainable clear cut logging. It would raise the effective Tongass timber target from the current 399 million board feet(mmbf) of saw logs (the effective allowable sale quantity after the Tongass Timber Reform Act) to 418 mmbf. The rider would do so in part by placing special Tongass fish, wildlife, and community use areas now protected from logging onto the chopping block. More importantly, the rider seeks to pre-empt the Forest Service's lowering of the timber target even further in their new revision of the Tongass Land Management Plan. The new plan, released on April 18, proposes an annual allowable logging level of 303 mmbf (saw log measure), with an expected economic offering of 250-260 mmbf. Even these levels are unsustainable for all the forest's resources. But the Tongass rider's target of 418 mmbf of saw logs is over 60% higher than the Forest Service proposal. Once adopted, the Tongass rider will be treated as a Congressionally mandated timber target. The rider also seeks to impede any revision of the Tongass land plan by imposing a new standard for acceptable data and science - inviting litigation and increasing the chance that the Tongass rider will remain in effect. Finally, the rider seeks to permit several illegal and damaging timber sales to go forward without necessary environmental review, reversing a recent Ninth Circuit Court decision which supported equal treatment for tourism, fishermen, and subsistence and recreational users.

California Desert: The revised rider for the Mojave National Preserve continues to subvert the intent of the California Desert Protection Act. The new rider would require the National Park Service to manage the Mojave under the "historic management practices of the Bureau of Land Management" rather than under the policies and regulations of the National Park System. This would establish a dangerous precedent for the management of units of the park system. It again would expose the Mojave to the threat of open pit mining, cross-country motorcycle races, and uncontrolled use of firearms; sets funding at inadequate levels; and gives the Appropriations Committees unprecedented control over the park's management plan.

Endangered Species: A supposedly "temporary" moratorium on final listing of species and designation of critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) has been in place since April 1995. The revised "Extinction Rider" has been altered to allow emergency listings, but still precludes final listings and critical habitat designation and threatens more than 500 species in need of protection such as the Florida black bear and Atlantic salmon. Allowing only emergency listings will cost the taxpayers more money because emergency listings are temporary and must be repeated after 240 days. Furthermore, the species must still go through the final listing process once the moratorium is repealed. Moreover, forcing listings to be delayed until an emergency exists will result in greater recovery costs, fewer management options for landowners, and a greater likelihood of extinction. Finally, until final rules are issued for proposed species, they will be denied a wide range of protections including the recovery planning process, state protections, and consultations on federal activities.

Clearcut/Logging Without Laws Rider: Nothing less than full repeal of this disastrous legislation, added to last year's Rescissions bill, is acceptable. The Hatfield-Gorton proposal, contained in section 325 of H.R.3019, is a bogus fix. It extends suspension of environmental laws for logging old growth forests and maximizes cost to the taxpayer. The proposal does nothing to rescind the exemption from environmental law which the timber industry now enjoys for logging old-growth forests in the Pacific Northwest and nationwide for any timber sale classified as a so-called "salvage" sale. In fact, it actually extends the period of lawlessness for logging the old-growth sales (P. L. 104-19 Section 2001 (k)) for a minimum of two and a half more years-and possibly longer. Under the Logging without Laws Rider contained in the 1995 Rescissions bill, those sales subject to 2001(k) had to be completed by the end of FY 1996. Section 325strikes this requirement. Furthermore, Section 325 does not give the government more flexibility in dealing with these 2001 (k) sales. On the contrary, it actually limits the government's ability to exercise its rights contained in the very timbers ale contracts under which these sales are being logged. The current contracts provide the government the authority to terminate these sales over environmental concerns and also establish specific compensation requirements for such cancellations -- intended to limit liability. Section 325 overrides this authority and sets up a mechanism to maximize the timber industry's leverage to obtain substitute volume exempt from all environmental law -- or to maximize the cost to the taxpayer of buying out these sales by overriding the very fiscal limitations agreed to by the purchasers in their original contract.

Wetlands Rider: This provision bars EPA from exercising its authority under the Clean Water Act to protect wetlands. Senator Bond (R-MO) has asserted that this rider would reduce unnecessary duplication between the Corps of Engineers and the EPA. Although both agencies do address wetlands issues, there is little duplication. The EPA does not build dams or canals like the Corps, and the Corps does not have a mission and a history of protecting wetlands, like EPA. The Corps itself has made the same point and gone on record in opposition to this rider. Moreover, the EPA's existing authority is essential to ensure that the Corps follows the environmental standards set forth in the Clean Water Act. For example, without this authority the EPA could not have protected part of the Florida Everglades or the South Platte river from destruction. This rider represents a grave threat to the protection of our nation's remaining wetlands. Finally, while your only defense to this rider seemed to be a claim that it is the single EPA rider in the bill, we must disagree -- other EPA riders remain in the legislation(see below). The following riders were omitted from your press release, but are still in H.R. 3019:

Columbia Basin Ecosystem Management Project: This rider halts a scientific assessment of species protection needs in the Columbia River Basin. It cripples a joint forest Service and BLM ecosystem management project for the federal lands of the Columbia River Basin. H.R. 3019 aborts this critical planning process in mid-course, prohibiting the agencies from correcting serious flaws in their draft documents or addressing region-wide problems at the regional level. It also maximizes political influence into the process by directing that the draft documents -- as well as public documents -- be turned over to Congressional committees in lieu of the agencies responsible for managing these public lands. Furthermore, the rider suspends cumulative impacts analysis of widespread logging and grazing on natural resources. Finally, it bars important inter-agency consultation to protect salmon and other endangered species as is required by current law.

Mt. Graham Red Squirrel: The University of Arizona is seeking to carve away a portion of Arizona's Mt. Graham in the Coronado National forest for construction of a $60 million observatory. This fragile ancient boreal forest ecosystem is home to 18 varieties of plants, insects and animals --including the endangered Mt. Graham red squirrel -- found nowhere else. The mountain is also the most sacred site for the Carlos Apache Indian tribe. Despite three federal court decisions ruling against clearing the land for the observatory, this rider arbitrarily declares the observatory to be in full compliance with the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and other laws. It marks the latest in a long series of backdoor moves by the University to circumvent these laws.

Clearwater National Forest: This provision 1) eliminates a court-ordered revision of the management plan for the Clearwater National Forest in Idaho; and 2) bars court-ordered interim management guidelines for the forest. A September 1993 settlement required the Forest Service to revise the Clearwater Forest Plan and follow interim management guidelines designed to protect the old-growth stands and environmental health of the forest. This rider overrides the court's direction to the Forest Service to manage the Clearwater for multiple use, rather than solely for timber harvest, eliminating the interim protections and ordering the Forest Service to amend, rather than revise, the Clearwater's management plan.

Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuges: This rider requires the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to permit toxic pesticides on farmed areas within the two national wildlife refuges in the Klamath Basin of California and Oregon. Farming was authorized on certain areas within these refuges under a 1960's statute, but only to the extent consistent with the refuge's primary purpose of conserving migratory water fowl and other wildlife. The rider would prohibit the Service from implementing long-overdue new pesticide policies at the refuges that would restrict certain pesticides known to harm wildlife. Implementation of United Nations Biodiversity Initiative: This rider undermines the ability of the United States to play its part in vitally important international efforts to protect endangered species and preserve the planet's genetic resources. Approximately 100,000 species -- birds and mammals, as well as less visible insects and fungi -- are lost world wide each year. Although much of the work related to the biodiversity convention is done by the State Department, the National Park Service is prohibited from making a key contribution to the international effort to preserve biodiversity. In absence of this rider, the Park Service could bring valuable experience and expertise to the process. Energy Appliance Efficiency Standards: This provision would bring an end to an 8-year-old energy efficiency program that has made refrigerators and other home appliances more efficient, saving the average household $1,300in lower energy bills and dramatically reducing air pollution. Even a one-year delay in standards would cost consumers $5 billion in wasted energy. This language effectively rewards companies such as General Electric and Magnetek that have invested in lobbying to block new standards, rather than improved technology. These companies joined the other major appliance manufacturers in agreeing to the efficiency standards when they were signed into law during the Reagan administration. Only now, as some companies pull ahead in developing new technology, are the losers like GE trying to change the rules of the game.

Tap Water Standard for Radon: EPA is prevented from issuing new standards to protect the public from contamination of tap water with radon. EPA does not currently have a radon standard in place, although it is under a court order to issue such a standard. EPA studies have concluded that radon in tap water kills over 180 people every year. As reported to Congress in 1994,EPA stated that "the cancer risk from radon in water is higher than the cancer risk estimated to result from any other drinking water contaminant.

Hazardous Waste Sites: This rider prohibits the addition of new hazardous waste sites to the Superfund list for clean-up unless requested by a governor. As a result, serious health threats may remain unmitigated because no provisions are made for cleanup. We believe we have met your challenge to demonstrate the irreversible harm these riders will inflict upon our precious natural heritage and, in turn, issue a counter challenge. If the Appropriations Committee really wants to prevent H.R. 3019 from damaging the environment, the Committee will cease its sham fixes and eliminate these riders from the bill completely. We join Vice President Gore in urging you to honor the wishes of the American people and the welfare of future generations by removing these provisions today, Earth Day 1996, without any further delay.

Sincerely,

Susan Iudicello, Vice President for Program, Center for Marine Conservation

James K. Wyerman, Vice President for Program, Defenders of Wildlife

William J. Roberts, Legislative Director, Environmental Defense Fund

Kenneth A. Cook, President, Environmental Working Group

Gawain Kripke, Director, Appropriations Project Friends of the Earth

James S. Lyon, Vice President, Mineral Policy Center

John Fitzgerald, Washington Representative, Mt. Graham Coalition

William J. Chandler, Vice President for Conservation Policy ,National Parks & Conservation Association

Mary Marra, Vice President, Resources Conservation, National Wildlife Federation

Greg Wetstone, Legislative Director, Natural Resources Defense Council

Glen Spain, Northwest Regional Director, Pacific Coast Federation of Fisherman's Associations

Judy Noritake, National Policy Director, Pacific Rivers Council

Debbie Sease, Legislative Director, Sierra Club

Marty Hayden, Senior Policy Analyst, Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund

Dave Katz, Forest Plan Coordinator, Southeast Alaska Conservation Council

Rindy O'Brien, Vice President, Public Policy, The Wilderness Society

Steve Moyer, Director of Government Affairs, Trout Unlimited

Carolyn Hartmann, Environmental Program Director, U. S. Public Interest Research Group

Jim Jontz, Director, Western Ancient Forest Campaign

NPCA Asks You To Act !

Right Away! Contact your members of Congress. Call or e-mail them and ask them to oppose the anti-environmental riders in H.R. 3019, the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal 1996. If you send e-mail be sure to mention that you are a voter in their district as your e-mail address will not give any indication of your geographic location. Telephone Numbers:

Senate: 202-224-3121,

House of Representatives: 202-225-3121

White House: 202-456-1111

Copyright 1996, National Parks and Conservation Association.

From the Internet: URL: http://www.npca.org/

Created: 4/23/96


CRYSTAL CAVE (California) RESTORATION PROJECT


The first annual Crystal Cave Restoration Field Camp, held in late September 1995, was a great success. Volunteers from across the state worked on four major projects.

The first involved moving blast rubble from the Fault Room area. Various combinations of hand carrying, wheel barrows, a Tyrolean traverse, and dragging buckets up old pipes were used to move an estimated 13 tons of rubble out of the cave.

Cavers also removed an old (and very solid!) wall near Fat Man's Misery and installed a hand rail along the trail to replace it.

The volunteers also installed handrails in two other locations, just inside the entrance and in front of the Organ formation in the Organ Room.

The final project was hose cleaning along the tour route. This met with mixed success. Some areas cleaned up nicely while other areas remain imperfect. One challenge for those wielding the hose was to avoid "cleaning" natural soil deposits in pockets in the cave walls. Special care will have to be taken in the future to observe and avoid these small areas.

Continuing a project begun by Sequoia Natural History Association employees, volunteers also built small walls along the tourist trail. These walls will keep visitors' feet from wandering into fragile areas, redirect muddy water flow, and generally encourage formation growth.

The second Crystal Cave Restoration Field Camp will be held October 24-28, 1996. Projects will include formation repair, more rubble hauling, hose cleaning the Wild Tour Route, and cleaning some badly dirtied rimstone near Marble Hall.

(Source: San Francisco Bay Chapter Newsletter, April 1996)


MENDING SPELEOTHEMS FOLLOWING MOVIE FILMING


John French and Paul Meyer found themselves faced with the challenge of repairing a heavy stalactite in Cathedral Caverns which had been broken during filming of the "Tom Sawyer" movie. This is Paul's account of their experience.


Work has been ongoing at Crossings Cave for the past two months in search of a proper epoxy, and the proper method to conduct repairs. Credit must be given to John "Van" Van Swearingen III for suggesting that we raise the temperature of the cave formation to normal curing temperatures for the epoxy.

We had three epoxies at our disposal: a dental fixative which is quite obnoxious to the sinus passages, PowerPoxy, and E-6000. The dental glue was never used in cave, as it about knocked John and me over and gave us tremendous headaches just working near it in a well ventilated area. Above ground tests were performed by John and Van with the E-6000 adhesive. They heated sample cave formations to see if the epoxy would properly cure. It cured, but did not seem to do very well. An in-cave test was conducted with the E-6000. After one week, we returned and found that while the stalactite was holding we were not confident that the epoxy had cured. We were able to dislodge the formation easily with light pressure.

But we were prepared. We had with us a propane torch, support sticks, and a candle. Tests were conducted on two formations. Surface preparation was done by a thorough cleansing with water and scrub brush followed by drying and warming with the propane torch. Then epoxy was applied to both exposed surfaces and the formation wedged into place with supports. One formation had an aluminum foil shroud formed about the seam, and a candle placed several inches below. Temperature measurements indicated that the shroud area was reaching 100 degrees Fahrenheit. The second formation was wedged into place with no additional heat applied. The test was to determine whether or not it was necessary to maintain room temperature during the curing process. We returned one week later to examine the results. The second formation held and John was unable to pull the formation loose with upper body strength. Success. The first formation (candle heated) broke off with application of side pressure. Oh No! Ah, but our glue joint held. It was another crack in the formation that broke. But we had our answer. We did not need to maintain an elevated temperature to allow the glue to cure. We determined that it was necessary only to dry the formations thoroughly and to ensure that they were warm before applying epoxy.

To date, we have identified and are conducting repair to five distinct stalactites (eight fragments) within Crossings. Two of these formations have multiple fractures. Each stalactite presents an interesting engineering problem. How do we support the formation with sufficient pressure and, more importantly, is there a way to support it along its vertical axis? Two methods are used at present. The first method is to support the formation in place with two 1x2" boards clamped with C clamps. The other method is to use a screw type jack (such as furnished for leveling a recreational vehicle) to gradually apply pressure. The refined gluing techniques are now used for stalagmites as well as stalactites. We believe on the order of 150 stalagmite sections have been repaired (we lost count). We are looking forward to our Cathedral Caverns trip to repair the broken formation.

Source Huntsville Grotto News, Nov. 1995. Article by Paul J. Meyer


SPELEOJUNKESIS


By Diane H. Peapus (from Cleve-O-Grotto News, July 1995

Introduction

As some of you know, I've started my own science. Speleojunkesis. It's the study of junk in caves. My particular interest is determining how junk gets into caves in the first place, with the hope of developing methods for preventing future junk accumulation. Speleojunkesis is not one of those stuffy sciences. You don't even need to be a scientist to participate. All you need is an official speleojunkesis sample-collection bag in your cave pack. This is basically a large plastic resealable bag with the words "Spelunk Junk" written on it. Prototype spelunk junk bags were distributed at the February Cleveland Grotto meeting, and reasonable facsimiles can easily be made at home.

I have collected spelunk junk from three caves--Bear, Sharps, and Hidden River--observed spelunk junk in Mammoth-Onyx, and analyzed J4 spelunk junk collected by other speleojunkesis enthusiasts. The results of the sample analysis and some theories are presented here. It's generally seen that different types of caves have different types of spelunk junk which can be classified into a limited number of categories. It's theorized that different methods of spelunk junk prevention are needed for different types of caves.

Bear Cave, March 11, 1995

Bob Danielson was the first to embrace the spelunk junk sample collection devices, bringing enormous resealable plastic bags to the Bear Cave clean up sponsored by Loyalhanna Grotto. Also available for spelunk junk collection at Bear were wire brushes, five gallon plastic buckets, and one-gallon plastic milk jugs donated by Bob, Terry Rooney, Melissa Kennedy, and others, a 55-gallon drum/garbage can at the entrance to Bear Cave maintained by Loyalhanna; and Kim Metzger's ATV for hauling the samples down the mountain. Very little spelunk junk was found in the cave. However, decorating the entrance was a collection of defunct kitchen-drawer-style flashlights, dead batteries; the remains of several bonfires; abandoned cave clothes; and empty cave drink containers, including those which once held fluids with varying percentages of alcohol. The majority of the spelunk junk inside the cave was collected from the maze walls using wire brushes and consisted of brightly colored thin films in shapes resembling arrows, usually with the symbol "OUT" inscribed nearby. Most of these films fell to the cave floor when brushed or were mixed with cave mud.

Sharps Cave, April 1, 1995

Cleveland Grotto's annual April Fool's Day Sharps Cave trip proceeded under the arrangement made last year, that we pick up any junk we see. Once again, Bob provided huge spelunk junk sample-collection bags and added wooden tongue depressors for scraping up carbide. To our delight, only a few carbide dumps and no other spelunk junk were found in Sharps that day.

J4 Cave, April 15, 1995

Spelunk junk consisting of inappropriate light sources and empty food wrappers was collected in J4 by Mickey Skowronsky and Paul Drennan and is reported in Cleve-O-Grotto News (May 1995, vol. 41(5), p. 34). The main difference between 14 spelunk junk and that of Bear is that the absence of the 55-gallon garbage drum made it necessary for J4 spelunk junk to accumulate in the only collection device found there, namely, the cave register tube. These samples were submitted for analysis at the May Grotto meeting.

Hidden River Cave, May 6, 1995

Several bags of spelunk junk were collected at the Grotto's third or fourth Somewhat Annual Hidden River Work Day. This cave has a history of foul spelunk junk from commercial runoff, inefficient sewage treatment, and chemical spills. All these are already documented by the EPA and considered far too serious topics for the fledgling science of speleojunkesis at this time. (Refer to American Cave Adventures, published by the American Cave Conservation Association, Fall, 1994.) Sample collection was limited to items which could be contained in a spelunk junk bag.

After collecting a bag of spelunk junk, it was noticed that the samples consisted of a small number of repeating offenders. Wanting a second opinion, the first official speleojunkesis, Melissa Kennedy, was enlisted to take time from weed patrol and collect a bag of spelunk junk. She confirmed that the spelunk junk contained only a few recurring items: broken glass, cigarette filters, snack food wrappers, and plastic straws. The most notable exception to these items was a pink plastic water pistol found by Bob Danielson, and theorized to be historic spelunk junk, possible used by the Kentucky Militia during the Civil War.

Mammoth-Onyx Cave, May 7, 1995

Our clean up efforts at Hidden Cave were rewarded with a tour of Mammoth-Onyx, the commercial show cave at Kentucky's Down Under. Our knowledgeable guide, Chris, explained the present management's inherited problems caused by metals leaching from coins deposited into a formation historically called "The Wishing Well," how these metals

killed cave microbes at the bottom of the troglodyte food chain; and the consequent loss of sightless cave fish, once abundant in the cave. As he described the removal of thousands of dollars in pennies from the Wishing Well, monitoring the slow reappearance of natural cave bacteria, and an unsuccessful attempt to reintroduce cave fish, I observed several dollars in new coins in a pool nearby. Throughout the tour I also detected a considerable amount of chewing gum on the cave floor and formations. No spelunk junk was collected at this time, however. Chris assured us that the gum and coins are now removed on a regular basis.

Conclusion

While in the show cave, it was noted that its spelunk junk was of a different nature than samples previously collected in Hidden River, Sharps or Bear. Samples were compared and classes of spelunk junk were identified. Samples from J4 analyzed later were found to be consistent with the classes determined using the Hidden River, Mammoth-Onyx, Sharps, and Bear data.

Coins and gum found in Mammoth-Onyx are classified as commercial spelunk junk. They are likely to have been carried in by paying customers and deposited carelessly, as with the gum, or intentionally, as with the coins. Providing a gum receptacle and artificial wishing well at the entrance to a commercial cave may prevent further accumulation.

As Hidden River is in the center of town and subject to street runoff and storm drain backup, the type of samples found there was classified as run off spelunk junk. Since the source of these samples cannot be specified as in the commercial cave, a broader plan to prevent this type of accumulation needs to be implemented. Working storm drains, adequate public garbage receptacles and pick up, and education may curtail this type of spelunk junk. Discouraging the use of non-reusable, non-biodegradable items, such as plastic straws, may also help.

Spelunk junk of the type found in Bear and J4 can be referred to as "caver" generated. Encouraging "cavers" to join grottos and participate in safe, cave-friendly caving may eliminate these samples. Cavers carrying spelunk junk bags, grotto-run clean ups, and grotto maintenance trash receptacles also seem to be effective.

Carbide dumps found in Sharps fall into the most disturbing class of spelunk junk termed caver generated. This is not to be confused with the "caver" generated category found in Bear and J4. A carbide dump bag similar to the spelunk junk sample collection bags can be made also using resealable plastic bags, but printing the words "Spent Carbide" on it. The fine line between caver generated and "caver" generated classifications needs further studies.

Continued collection of spelunk junk samples is always welcome.


OPPORTUNITY OR TRAVESTY?
Developer plans Spielberg-type park in world-famous Mexican caves


Publishers Note: You've may think you've seen this article before-and you are right! It's come to me in many different versions and been reprinted multiple times. The version published in the last issue was slightly different than this one, so I'm running it again.

Imagine the U.S. government so strapped for cash it agreed to turn the Grand Canyon into a Disneyland-style theme park. {Ed. Emeritus - It's not so unbelievable today, considering some concession proposals and ideas of selling off NPS properties.)

That's what is shaping up for the world-famous Cacahuamilpa caverns, which a Canadian developer plans to turn into an enormous backdrop for a high-tech Magic Mountain gone wild--complete with exploding volcanoes and life-size robotic dinosaurs identical to those in Jurassic Park.

Desperate for money because of its economic crisis, Mexico in April 1995 granted industrialist Barry Sendel the first-ever rights to build a concession in one of Mexico's forty-four national parks. But Sendel plans more than just snack bars for Mexico's answer to Carlsbad Caverns.

The developer who designed attractions for Disneyland and Universal Studios plans to spend $19 million turning the natural wonder into "The Cave of the Time." Using holographics, state-of-the-art headphone sound and dinosaurs made by the creators of the stars of Seven Spielberg's "E.T." and "Jurassic Park," visitors would be led through simulations of the Big Bang, the formation of glaciers and seas, the origins of life, and the rise of humans.

Outside Sendel plans an insectarium filled with 50,000 varieties of bugs, a planetarium, museum, hotel, and restaurant.

But environmentalists won't be first in line to see the show. "Would you do this at Yellowstone Park? At Yosemite? This is a natural phenomenon, not Disneyland, and it doesn't need embellishment," said Jeanne Gurnee, former president of the National Speleological Society, the foremost cave exploration and protection organization in North America. "This goes against the whole idea of a national park, which is to share its wonders of nature with the people of Mexico and with visitors without the benefit of theatrics," added Gurnee, author of the top guide to the continent's show caves.

Sendel has managed the caves since April 18 and has agreed to pay the Mexican government more than $500,000 a year for fifty years. While he is still seeking approval to build the theme park inside the two explored miles of the caves, Mexican officials say the project could be approved by September.

The vast caverns, of which Nineteenth Century writer Frances Calderon de la Barca said, "No being but He who inhabits eternity could have created," are made up of more than twenty giant rooms. The largest is more than forty-five stories tall. Filled with gigantic stalagmites and stalactites, the mysterious natural sculptures produced by millions of years of trickling water, the caverns are made famous for the 1940 discovery of rare blind fish in their immense rivers. The caverns remain largely unexplored.

Mexican authorities say they have no choice but to allow the development in order to save the caves, which are littered with garbage and in disrepair after years of government neglect. There are no medical services and no security inside the caverns. Dozens of vendors sell everything from tacos to replicas of the caves and operate in a free-for-all marketplace inside.

Officials say they are seeking investors for other Mexican national parks, which extend over five percent of the country's land, and include vast canyons, forests, coastline, and deserts. For years the largely unpatrolled parks have run wild with crime and marijuana fields. With the government millions of dollars in debt since the December devaluation of the peso, there is no money for improvements.

"I see their intentions are healthy," sad Pedro Alvarez-Icaza, general director of environmental regulation at Mexico's National Ecological Institute, the government agency in charge of national parks. 'The caverns can't remain as they are; we need an alternative. This could become a sort of vast educational space for our children that we don't have." Alvarez-Izaca said that it is unlikely Mexican authorities will allow the dinosaur portion of the exhibit inside the cave, but that they have no reservations about permitting their placement outside.

The government has few reservations about the other effects Sendel plans, including installing fake floors and rock bases over a portion of the cave, pumping in smoke and water-based gas to simulate erupting volcanoes, and wiring the cavern for light and sound.

Sendel makes no apologies for his plans. He says he intends to restore the beauty of the caves while attracting more visitors than ever. "Being an environmentalist, I don't want to see the caves destroyed any more than they have been, and they've been allowed to go downhill for years," he said. "We're going to get them in shape and create the Eighth Wonder of the world, something that's never been seen before. It's the most fantastic theater for a show about the creation of the world ever conceived."

Sendel and Creative Presentations International, a Valencia (California) based company best known for its development of Spielberg's most fantastic creatures, say the development will do less harm to the fragile natural sculpture of the caves than the harsh lights and concrete walkway installed now for visitors by the Mexican government.

By using laser beam technology and projecting sound effects to visitor headsets, they say damage to the caverns from sound and light waves will be virtually eliminated.

Environmentalists say developing Cacahuamilpa is a travesty. "The caves are a cathedral to nature. If you change them, if you make them a backdrop for technological wizardry, it is an assassination of the caverns themselves," said Romero Aridjis, a Mexican poet who heads The Group of 100, the country's most prominent ecological organization.

(From the Daily Mail (a Knight-Ridder Newspaper), June 28, 1995.

Source: Dead Dog Dispatch (Tri-State Grotto), August 1995


Wanna Rent a Cave?


Fourteen caves are for rent in the Spanish village of Galera, near Granada. Prices range from $30 per couple daily ($170 a week) for a one-bedroom cave, to about $70 a day ($400 a week) for a five-bedroom underground apartment that can accommodate seven. The caves have electricity, running water and modern plumbing and are equipped like any vacation lodging.

Australia's Outback opal-mining town of Coober has several tourist lodgings built beneath the ground to escape the desert climate. The Radeka Down Under Motel has rooms starting at about $45 daily and dorm accommodations starting at about $8.

(Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette, date not given)


NEWS OF THE NATURE CONSERVANCY (Virginia Chapter)


The future of the South River Preserve (which a map of TNC projects places in Augusta County VA) has been ensured with the purchase by TNC of the source of the spring that sustains this rare Shenandoah Valley natural community. On the heels of Alcoa Corporation's 14-acre donation that established South River Preserve in August, the Virginia TNC quintupled the size of the preserve with its late October purchase of 65 adjacent acres from a neighboring landowner. Now the hydrology of the preserve--how water moves through the system--cannot be fundamentally altered.

The seller of the land, a Waynesboro attorney named Willetts, who still plans to build a residential development on nearby property, commented, "TNC's non-combative approach is important to me. I think [this project is] great because they put their money where their mouth is." This again makes the point that TNC's effectiveness springs from its non-aggressive approach, steering clear of environmental lobbying. Adds Mr. Willetts, "The whole idea of setting aside land for future generations appeals to me, too."

The newsletter also reviews a book by Laurie Garrett, The Coming Plague. Garrett discusses how habitat destruction promotes the spread of deadly viruses and microbes that now besiege humans on all continents. One chapter discusses at length how natural systems under stress from habitat alterations give rise to microbial emergence. "If an ecology had been devastated, and its eventual replacement species were of inadequate diversity to ensure a proper balance among flora, fauna, and microbes, a new disease phenomenon might emerge," asserts Garrett. Such was the case in the town of Lyme, Connecticut, in the mid-1970s. What got started there was Lyme disease, which has come in for much nationwide publicity.

Researcher Andy Spieman of Harvard tried to unravel the sudden emergence of the new disease. His study implicated habitat destruction, the loss of original biodiversity in the Northeast favored aggressive plant species, and led to dramatic increases in deer, rodents, and ticks unchallenged by natural predators."

The Virginia TNC is also planning to host a roundtable on remining of abandoned mine lands. These are a critical threat to water quality in the Clinch and Powell Rivers. Working with TNC to solve this problem is a group including state and federal agencies, Virginia Tech researchers, and the Powell River Project.

On a lighter note, the Clinch Valley Bioreserve TNC office in Abingdon had a curious guest in October when an unidentified bat decided to take up residence inside. Apparently AWOL from its local cave, the bat hung out for a few days above the entrance door. A staffer called in a helpful neighbor, who gently nudged the bat with a broom. But the stubborn mammal held its ground, hissing at the human intruders. Eventually, however, the little visitor clung to the broomstick and the two humans carried it outside and left it safely on a fencepost.

(Source: Virginia Chapter News, Fall/Winter 1995.)


DAN YR OGOF (Wales) ACCESS MANAGEMENT


Source: Dan yr Ogof Cave Advisory Committee, printed in Spring 1996 Caves & Caving, British Cave Research Association


Whether sporting cavers, divers, or researchers, we will all agree that Dan yr Ogof is a particularly fine cave with features of interest to everybody.


The owners have the wish to conserve the cave so that it can be enjoyed by future generations of cavers. We must all applaud this. The fact that the cave and its catchment fall within the Brecon Beacons National Park, and are designated an SSSI under the protection of the Countryside Council for Wales affords protection from these statutory bodies.

Underground, however, it is we, the practicing caving community, who must bear the responsibility for maintaining the cave in the best possible condition. It is all too sadly evident that unrestricted access can lead to denudation and degradation of the underground environment. Consequently SWCC, who have for 30 years protected Dan yr Ogof by access rules, deserve all our thanks. Their access controls have worked well, in that we have all enjoyed reasonable access to the cave and it has remained in good condition.

Now it is time for the "new" system to come into use. The name has changed but the aims remain the same . . . to provide for access 365 days a year (subject only to the weather) while working together to maintain the cave in the best possible condition.

Proposed access system for Dan yr Ogof

Application forms will be required to be completed by potential leaders.

These will be required to be returned to the secretary along with two passport-type photographs for use on their "leader permits" which will be used for as long as they survive or as long as the leader remains "active" and an administrative fee for making these up and the associated paperwork of 2 British pounds at present costs.

One "leader permit" will remain at Dan yr Ogof where parties will be asked to check in during the "open" season. The second will be returned to the leader to retain along with:

(a) A copy of advice to leaders which includes the rules governing access and suggestions of the conservation exercises they may like to offer to do or be asked to do.

(b) Report forms they will be required to fill in after each trip and to return to the secretary by post or through a box left for that purpose at the cave. These will be essential as they will furnish the basis of the record of usage and the condition of the cave.

During the "closed" season the key will be available from the Secretary or, if she is not available, from Dudley Thorpe at the shop in Aberraf, or from other Committee Members who are willing to act in that role. Clearly it will be advisable to arrange for the key to be available in advance by a quick telephone call. Any key borrowed in that way must be returned to the normal key holder straight after the trip.

Leader-permits will be renewable every three years but should not require the production of a new set of photographs, only a new form with fresh details.


If you are not already a member of the Conservation and Management Section of the National Speleological Society, you are invited to join. Dues are $5.00 a year, payable to the NSS Cons/Mgmt Section. Members receive the newsletter regularly and are entitled to vote at the annual meeting.

r

Yes, I would like to join the Conservation/Management Section. Here are my dues in the amount of $________ (dues of $5/year may be prepaid for up to three years).

Name______________________________________

NSS No.________

Address_______________________________________________

 

City_____________________________

State_____________

ZIP_________________

Please send this form with check/money order to the Secretary-Treasurer:
Evelyn Bradshaw,
10826 Leavells Road, Fredericksburg, VA 22407-1261.

 

 


CHILLIWACK VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA, Canada


Dick Garnick

There are those times when one comes in contact with a government office or bureaucrat. Fortunately they are not all like the Internal Revenue Service or some elected representative of the people. In some government offices, bureaucrats and government employees do work for the good of the service they are trusted with. The B.C. Forest Service in ChlliwackB.C. and the cavers of the Chilliwack Valley are developing one of those good relationships.

Several years ago my son Mark, my girl friend Sally, and I were on our way to check out some limestone in the Chilliwack Valley B.C. We were walking up a road that I had been up probably thirty times before. At a small gully that crossed the road there was anew wash out. I noticed a 10-foot deep section of road had washed out but could not see where the road fill had disappeared to. The road had collapsed into a hole about 10 by 20 feet. I dropped grapefruit-sized rocks that echoed as they searched out the bottom of the deep hole.

The next weekend Mark, Rob and Mike Lewis, Larry McTigue, and I returned to find out the extent of our find. After rigging the pit with a one-hundred-foot rope, I rappelled to the bottom of a room nearly 60 feet high, 15 feet wide, and extending 30 feet under the road. There is an upper passage near the beginning of the rappel that goes up under the road (with the ceiling to road surface being about 3 to 8 feet thick). We continued down another 20 vertical feet to another 25-foot blind pit. This is where most of the road fill found a temporary place to stop.

The summer of 1993 there was a sudden gating of the road into the area. This could lead only to one thing: logging and heavy equipment. I contacted Phil Whitfield in Kamloops B.C., who works for B. C. government parks. I explained the potential danger of heavy equipment driving over the cave. Phil contacted a friend of his at the Chilliwack Ministry of Forest Service.

I eventually came into contact with Ruben Medeiros, acting recreation officer for the Chilliwack forest area I explained the potential danger of heavy equipment driving over the cave and the possibility of the loss of the equipment and--even worse--a life. Ruben sent some maps of the area with roads and areas to be logged. Fortunately the area of logging would not need the use of the road. I was given the name of the logging company,contacted them, and they gave me a key to the road. They stated they would like to see the cave some day also.

This contact with the Ministry of Forest Office in Chilliwack has helped the cavers of the valley. because of early contacts providing information of potential danger, we have developed a very good working relation up to this time.

Unlike on Vancouver Island, the Chilliwack Valley has a different type of logging operation, fewer and smaller caves. Because of the supposed lack of caves in the area there were no forest office policies, knowledge, or actions dealing with caves or caving in the area.

Ruben, the Recreation officer, is now in the process of learning how to deal with the karst, caves, and cavers. We have the opportunity to help guide and shape the knowledge and management of the karst and caves of the Chilliwack.

A new working relationships is being pushed forward by the new discovery of the Iron Curtain Cave by Rob Wall. This cave is a unique cave for the area in size and formations. The cave is in the process of being gated so as to protect it and the cavers who enter.

There is the potential of rock falls, high water, and damage to the formations that has presented the need for one of those disgusting but necessary gates. Materials are being provided by the B.C. Forest Office, and the labor will be provided by the cavers.

Because of the working relationship between the Chilliwack Ministry of Forest Office and the cavers of the area, this will be one cave that will be protected and managed by a plan. Some government offices and officials do work for good. Thanks, Ruben!

(Source: Cascade Caver (January 1996).


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