Archives for 2015

Hollow Ridge Preserve gets new gates!

The Gating of Hollow Ridge Cave: A SCCi Preserve

Allen, Kristen and Uriah at entrance #1 gate with lock

Allen, Kristen and Uriah at entrance #1 gate with lock

On December 5-7, 2014 a group of cavers met to gate Hollow Ridge Cave in Jackson County, Florida. This was necessary because the county was in the process of building hiking trails just downhill of the bluff line where the lower cave entrances are located. The gates were constructed to keep out vandals and to keep people from getting lost in the cave which contains 3400’ of surveyed passage. There are also rare cave fauna that need protection.

Kristin Bobo designed the cave gates and provided her expertise in installation. Her Assistant, Uriah Pryor, cut the steel. The hauling group consisted of Allen Mosler, Bufford Pruitt, and Tevis Kouts. Tiffiny Kouts, Terrin Kouts, and D’Ann Mosler ran errands. Guy Yates helped return some of the equipment to Tallahassee.

It took three days to build four gates. The gate at Entrance 1 (with lock) was located at the upper entrance and is 3’x8’ in size. The gates at Entrance 2 were located 70’ inside the entrance and are 3’x3’ and 6’x2.5’ at the flood plain level. Entrance Gates 3 & 4 were placed 30’ inside the cave and block three of the mid-bluff entrances. It took about a day and a half to build each gate. The process was Kristen would measure for the needed steel, Uriah would cut the steel, and someone would carry the steel to the gate and help Kristen with the installation. The gates were impressive being made from 6”x6”x3/8” and 4”x4”x3/8” angle iron. They look bullet-proof.

In addition to the people above who provided their time and talent, I would like to thank the following grottos and cavers that made donations: Flint River Grotto, Florida Speleological Society, Middle Georgia Grotto, River City Grotto, Tamps Bay Area Grotto, Paul Aughey, Matt Fisher, Jerry Johnson, Kitty Markley, Roger Moore, Allen Mosler, Steve Nemeth, Ed Pratt, Larry Rueff, and Philip Walker. Donations of over $4000 were made that covered about 60% of the cost of building the gates. The extra steel was taken to Gainesville by Bufford Pruitt to be used in the reconstruction of Warrens Cave gate, a NSS Preserve.

This hard-working and generous group of cavers made this project a success…thank you.

Allen Mosler

Property Manager, Hollow Ridge Cave

Southeastern Cave Conservancy, Inc.

 

Frick’s Cave Open House – Membership Appreciation Event

Southeastern Cave Conservancy, Inc is pleased to invite our members and their guests to the Frick’s Cave Annual Open House. 

Throughout the year, Frick’s Cave is closed to protect endangered bats and salamanders that live in the cave. On this ONE DAY ONLY, while the bachelor colony of bats is not present, the SCCi will open the cave to show our appreciation for your membership. After exploring the cave, please join us around the fire for hot food, a talk about the endangered bats, and announcement of the winners of the 1st SCCi Photo and Video Contest!

To help our volunteers plan please RSVP here.

Date: February 28, 2015 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Who: Open to current SCCi members and their guests.

Schedule of Events – 

9:00 AM – 4:00 PM: Cave open for visitation, assuming summer gray bat colony has not yet returned. Note: SCCi Clean Caving Procedures will be strictly enforced! Frick’s is a stream cave, please dress accordingly.

12:00 PM – 4:00 PM: Hot food will be available until supplies run out.
Don’t forget to RSVP so we can plan!

1:00 PM: Trina Morris, a bat biologist from GA Dept of Natural Resources, will talk about the Frick’s Cave gray bat colony.

Winners of the SCCi Photo and Video Contest will be announced after the bat talk.

Location: To protect our properties we do not publish their locations online. If you are a member and do not know where the Frick’s Cave Preserve is located please use the contact information below to obtain directions.

Questions: Email us at admin@scci.org. Call us at (423) 771-9671.

Update on Stephens Gap Cave Preserve Access

As most of you probably are aware, in December, SCCi purchased a property containing Stephens Gap Cave, Pipeside Pit and three other known caves in Jackson County, Alabama.

Unfortunately, working out an access agreement with the new owner of the land between the county road and SCCi’s property boundary near Pipeside Pit is taking longer than anticipated. The trail to the cave goes through this neighbor’s property, and he has asked that we not allow visitors to cross his property until an agreement is in place.

We apologize for the delay in opening the preserve to visitation; however, we are hopeful that we will be able to come up with an access solution that works for all parties in the near future.

We’ll keep you posted here and at our website of any changes. Until then, please respect the property rights of our neighbor and postpone any planned visits to the Stephens Gap Cave Preserve for now. SCCi appreciates your patience as we work out these access issues.