Monday, February 7, 2011

Cueva YuYu on Saturday

This is a nice cave we have been in more than a few times. It is really neat but full of water and very cold. There was a short section of cave we hadn't finished surveying and that was the point of the trip. This cave is probably the furthest from our house - about 2 hours. There is no good way to get there by car and even the jungle walk is kind of convoluted. We drove, parked, hiked and arrived later than usual due to a later start. Tom, Diana, Brett, Jeff and I were on the trip. There is a rope coming down the "wet" entrance. There is also a "dry" entrance to the cave that isn't really dry...just drier.

After we were all down the rope we found the first station and started the survey leap-frog style. I'd find the station, Diana would come and take over, measurements would be taken and recorded and I'd hop to the next one.

The water in the upstream section was only ankle high - just high enough so we'd have wet feet the whole time. The water in this cave is very cold. Here's some nice flow stone. Photographing in this cave is hard because it is so wet and misty. It is hard to survey because the water is loud and you can't hear yelling over the water sounds. More formations.

I thought these layers were very interesting. Wish I could make a waterfall like this in my yard! Flow stone always looks like dripping candle wax or ice cream sundaes to me. The rock is wet, colorful and at interesting angles. More ice cream cone stuff.

What started out as a "short" (we know better) trip turned into a bunch of hours as we fully explored some previously unexplored little holes. Brett is coming down this one. I went up it and Jeff got tired of waiting for me and left. I went up, and up some more, and over in a small crawl and up some more, up some more and it was very interesting. I got to a place that went up again but I needed some rope and someone else around if I were going to scale it. It was a vertical rock about 6 feet tall that might have gone even further up! On the way out it was difficult since it was muddy, I was alone, it was part breakdown (which is like a maze) and hard to go down things I had come up since I could only fit feet first and with my stomach to the rock - which meant I couldn't see. Thankfully Brett was there as I was working my way out. He answered my calls and then fit through this hole to shine his light so I could work my way out! Then we both backed out and joined the others. These small spots always seem ok going in but are difficult coming out of! There is something creepy about coming down when you can't see what you are doing and it is too small to turn or anything. You just have to commit. Here's the river level passage.

So after all our investigating we headed back up the ropes. After an error on the rope I lived my 9th life I think. I thought Tom was off the rope, and he was but his pack wasn't. The pack was stuck and I headed up a loose rope. Thankfully the carabiner on it was wedged firmly between a couple rocks and there was a ledge for me to teeter on so I could get off rope, dislodge the pack, he could pull it up and I could get back on and continue up. It was precarious on the ledge and I will be much more careful listening for "off rope" and shouting "on rope" next time. There is always someone on the trip who is "insurance" (the person things happen to) and today it was my turn. Stupid me. Here Jeff is coming up. Once we were up we wandered around the jungle looking into different cracks and holes that didn't go far. When we were tired and hungry we worked our way to the cars and off to the mofongo mobile. It was a long day but very interesting!

1 comment:

Rosa said...

OMG. But I liked this many beautiful pictures of the formations...and yeah, you can get something like that waterfall at your place :)