2005 Dropping the funnel of doom

This is one of the newest discovered caves in the state. The entrance area was in a known sinkhole near another large cave. Heavy spring runoff in 2005 caused to cave entrance to wash open, and once the water levels went down exploring could commence.

This trip was one of the earliest large group trips into the cave, and one of the first documented attempts at using aluminum ladders for cave exploration that I can find.  More notably for me, this was my first experience with being the first person into virgin cave passage. Since the cave had to wash open, and then we needed a ladder to get up into a couple of the leads I tried, I was absolutely certain I was the first person in. And for a couple of them, I was the only person into them until the cave was thoroughly remapped in 2010. It wasn’t the prettiest passage.  As you can see from the pictures, this high lead was absolutely coated in mud several inches thick. It left much to be desired for visual interest, and little reason to inspire others to return to see it later. But in its mud covered glory it was all mine for a few years.