Showing posts from June, 2010

Caving With Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania Council 11-18-18

Yes, they were at it again. This time there were two new Troops to introduce to caving. Eastern PA Council set this one up at the same time as the one in October. This trip originally had sixteen people, but one Troop backed out at the last minute. It’s a shame because they missed a very good time with these girls. Maybe they’ll come out again when they can. We have been having a tremendous amount of rain and unprecedented snowfall for this time of year. As a result the cave actually had a good bit of water in it.

I like to use this cave for beginner trips because it is stable. But I’ve never seen this much water in this cave. Parts that usually have a little sticky mud had water over the top of my thigh. I choose to avoid the lower parts of the cave. For most of the girls this was their first wild caving trip. I didn’t want to take any chances with them and I didn’t want anyone cold and miserable. But they all got very muddy, and had a blast. How could I tell? Watch the video. L…

Laurel Caverns Episode 1

A few years back, in a previous life when I was a Scoutmaster, I had finally talked our Troop into going on a wild cave trip. We went to Laurel Caverns in western Pennsylvania ( This is really the ideal first time trip for Scouts to experience a dark cave tour. They supply most of what you need including the guides and the cave. They also have other activities than the dark tour like Climbing and Geology Merit Badge. They also offer a few Girl Scout badges as well.
We took the three hour dark tour. I'm trying to condense all the video into a one or two short glimpse of the tour. By the way, the kids in this video are all grow up adults now.

Meet Crew 77 Vertical Caving Team

Venturing Crew 77 is out of Edmond, OK. They've been doing vertical caving for a while and have developed a pretty good program around it. Check out their video on YouTube.

The Crew 77 caving program has been going on for about 7 years. We have explored small caves in Oklahoma, and have graduated to major caving expeditions to the Carlsbad Caverns area over spring break for the past several years. The vertical caving is a direct offshoot to our BSA rock climbing program. It combines the Single Rope Techniques we learn in climbing, and put them in a different and darker context.
We will typically have horizontal caving opportunities for younger crew members and scouts. These will have hiking and navigation opportunities in addition to very scenic and geologically important caves. Training will include trips to Oklahoma caves such as Culp Cave and the Selman Cave System in northwest Oklahoma. Professor Dr. John Bowen is our contact/liaison with UCO for access to the Selman Caves…

Encore: Dragon Breath Grotto at Hershey Cave 11-18-07

Since Geocities is closing down, I have to move all my trip reports. They are in a sort of blog form, so I'll be moving them over here, one at a time.
========================================================================================The Dragon Breath Grotto ( is an Independent Youth Grotto for young men and women 14 y/o (or13 and graduated the 8th grade) to 21 y/o. This was the first official caving trip for this grotto. Most of the members have caved in one form or another before, but this was the first trip as a group. The members from Dragon Breath that were there were Paul S., John L., Dan W., and Dan G. Members of the Philadelphia Grotto who were along were Amos, Marci, Steve Gadd, and myself (Allen) who is registered in both grottos.

It was in the low thirties and slight drizzle outside as we were suiting up to go inside the cave. We were looking forward to the relatively warmer fifty-five degree cave temperature. The newer guys did well with…