Post details: caving down a rope


Permalink 11:01:53 am, Categories: Urban Exploration, 1095 words   English (US)

caving down a rope

I met up with Sertile and Atron on Thursday to check out the caves near the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.

The two caves were located along the highway near the Hall of Fame. I'd checked out one of them by myself before, but I hadn't known about the second until someone on the forum had pointed it out. The fun thing about the caves was that even though they were directly beside the highway, they were invisible from the road. The people on the road would see us standing there one minute and gone the next.

We checked out the cave I'd explored before first. The only way down into the cave was via a wooden ladder that someone had installed a while back. Unfortunately, the ladder was rotting, and two of the rungs were already broken, but Atron had brought a rope to help us get down easier. I went down the ladder first, then Sertile started down and fell at my feet as he came up on the missing last rung, tearing a huge hole in his pants and shirt. It was pretty funny, and Atron caught the audio of Sertile falling on his video camera.

We spent a little while checking out that cave. It wasn't too big, just one large room with a few small tunnels off to the sides that didn't go anywhere. There were plenty of awesome formations, though, including one gigantic column in the center of the room. The ceiling was also covered with bubbly formations and soda straws in places.

Once we were done there, we all climbed out and moved over to the next cave. None of us had ever been in this one. The opening to the cave was pretty much a verticle shaft with smooth walls that you couldn't possibly climb. It looked like there was a decent-sized chamber at the bottom, though.

Atron tied his rope to a boulder and tossed it down the shaft. I volunteered to go first and slid about fifteen feet down the rope into the cave. Then, I had Atron pull the rope up, tie my spotlight to it, and lower it down to me. After watching how awkward it had been to get down the rope, Atron and Sertile decided to wait and see if I could actually get back out of the cave.

The second cave wasn't as fancy as the first one. It was just one big chamber set on an incline. There weren't even any formations to speak of, but people had obviously been there before, because there were two gigantic names spraypainted on the wall.

At the far end of the chamber, though, I did find something interesting. Around a corner, there was a huge pit in the ground. It was even deeper than where I'd slid down the rope. There appeared to be another large chamber at the bottom, but I couldn't see if it went anywhere. The walls were just as slick, and I could't climb down. I thought about having Atron throw the rope down to me, but then I figured I'd never get it back up to him and I'd be stuck. We'd have to come back with another rope or ladder if we wanted to see the second pit.

After that, I had Atron pull my spotlight up, then I climbed about halfway up the crack. I tied my camera onto the rope and had him pull it up, too. I knew it was going to be a lot harder getting out, so I didn't want to risk breaking my camera. And I was right about it being hard. I ended up doing a weird combination of pulling myself up the rope and mashing my body in between the walls of the shaft to shove myself up. It wasn't graceful, but I eventually got out.

It turned out, while I was down in the cave, Sertile and Atron had found a third cave right next to that one. It wasn't actually a completely separate cave, because both started from the same little hollow area in the rock, but it didn't appear to connect to the other one. To get into it, you had to duck through a small opening into a room that was just big enough to crawl around inside. Then, at the back of that area, there was another large pit that dropped down into two large chambers, although the pit wasn't as steep as the other one.

This time Sertile went down the rope into the pit. He crawled around out of sight in the chamber for a bit, then came back. There was a rock partially blocking the way to the second chamber and he squeezed around it and disappeared into that one for a bit. When he'd checked them out completely, Atron and I got to enjoy him flopping out of the pit the way I had done.

Once were done there, Atron headed out because he had to be somewhere. Sertile and I were going to stick around and check out the other building at the MFA mill that we hadn't explored yet. We split up to kill some time and get some dinner, then we met back up at a nearby parking lot.

Since it still wasn't dark enough, Sertile and I ended up wandering around downtown a bit. We checked out a couple vacant buildings, but that didn't kill enough time. So, we drove down to where they were opening up the Jordan Creek tunnel and poked around there. Then we headed to another part of town to check out some vacant buildings near the railroad tracks.

When it finally got dark, we went back to the mill. We tried all the doors at first, but they all seemed to be locked. As we were talking about whether or not I should try to climb the outside ladder to the roof, two cars pulled up in the parking lot. We ducked into the shadows to wait for the cars to pass, not thinking anything of them. Then someone got out of one of the vehicles and started walking directly toward us.

We took off down a dark space between the buildings and ran back to Sertile's truck. We were confused as hell about what had just happened. It was either a huge coincidence that the guy showed up at the building right then, or we'd set off a silent alarm and hadn't realized it.

Either way, we figured that was a good sign we should call it a night.

Comments, Pingbacks:

Comment from: Zach [Visitor] ·
Nice, looks like a scene out of Goonies.
Permalink 03/05/05 @ 15:22
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Sadly, however, there were no pirate ships to be found.
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Permalink 01/14/10 @ 04:53

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