The following is a true story, only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Back in the Hole

Nadsters and Axel , just getting started. Notice how clean they are.
  A couple weeks ago I was fortunate enough to be invited along on a trip to Mystery Cave. After some prodding several weeks earlier, or trip leader K-Haug was able to get us permission/access for sport caving in Mystery. Along for the ride was Thleen, Nadsters, Axel, K-Haug, and Yours Truly.
Enigma Pit

K-Haug exiting "Enigma Pit"

Axel coming out of  "Way the Hell an' Gone"
   I was the old turd in this group of twenty somethings, nearing 40 I must have been ancient to these punks. Since I'm just getting to know most of them they asked questions like "do you even get to do anything any more", to which I reply " I'm always doing something". This was all in good fun and they were an awesome group to be caving with.    
In the "Labrinth"

Map, we don't need no stinking map
Inside "The Bear Crawl" 200' ++ of crawling on your side.

Not sure where we are here, but there is deep crevice below.
 Our Trip leader K-Haug is a great guy that has vast knowledge of Mystery Cave. I'm not sure how long he's been down there, but he started as a young boy caving with his dad P-Haug. P-Haug is also a great guy whom I've had the pleasure of caving with on past trips I've done in Mystery. K-Haug carries a map of the cave for obvious reasons, but knows nearly every twist and turn by heart. This is pretty amazing when you consider there is around eleven miles of passage, and to the unobservant eye most of it looks very similar, it would be easy to get lost.

Axel got that awesome cave suit by out bidding my wife at the  Corn feed auction this summer.
 The day's trip was one of the hardest I've done to date. This was apparent on the next day based on how sore I was. I'm always amazed at how tired and sore you can get while caving, for the most part it involves slow crawling, walking, and an occasional chimney climb. Being a gluten for punishment, I welcome the soreness, it lets me know I probably did something fun.
"Straddle Galleries" here we come 
"The Jump-Off"
 Just a guess here, but I think the others in the group had a lot of fun as well. This was Nadsters first time caving, with a background in climbing and other outdoor endeavors, she had no problem with the trip and was a fun part of the crew . Thleen and Axel also have a climbing and outdoor recreation background and were cruising through all the difficult sections of the cave with ease.  
Love birds

 I'd like to Thank, K-Haug for the invite and the leadership. Extra Thanks to; K-Haug, Thleen, Nadsters, and Axel, for waiting for me at the start of the trip, getting the tip at Axel's parent's restaurant ( I always pay back, I'll make it up to you next time I see you), Axel and his dad for the awesome meal, and Nadsters for the Mt Dew Live Wire.

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