BLUE RIDGE GROTTO
May 16, 2008
Pat Sims Al
Stewart Mary Sue Socky Doug
Susan Burr Dave Socky Gary Drewry Marian
Todd Martin Aaron Moses Cole Frantz * John Semones
Cave, renamed Cricket Den Cave, WVA. Aaron Moses
reported on his adventures in this vertical cave. Aaron did not like the rocks falling down out
of the walls on him as he was route finding.
4/13:Cole Frantz and John
Semones accompanied NRVG folk Rickey
Shortt, Leanne barley, Debbie Norris, John Fox,
Don Anderson, Bill Pond, and Tommy
Bell to the Great White Way in Norman Cave,
WVA. It was VERY wet. The trip leaders said it was the wettest they
had ever seen the cave. The Waterfall
was CRANKING!! Bill
Pond later had a “hot mustard”
incident at the Chinese Restaurant.
Pit, Lost World Caverns, WVA. Great Trip!
See report in the May DUMP. We were so pleased with the vertical and wild
caving, we gave owner Steve Silverberg a $75.00 donation.
5/3: Pat Sims and Susan Burr did more work in the new area
of Dante’s Inferno, Grand Caverns, VA. Susan went in feet first, but her shoulders
didn’t fit. Anya
Crane did get in, and said there was app. 25’ to survey. They will try to persuade the cave with a
portable jackhammer in July. Meanwhile,
in the campground, Marian McConnell
and Mary Sue Socky gave 6 talks to BSA about caving, then did cleanup in the back of Grand Caverns.
Socky, Errol Glidden, Ed Saugstad, Ken Haynes, Larry Fisher Gordon Cole
surveyed in Maxwelton Cave, WVA. Everybody froze in
the cold, deep water, (except Dave
Socky, who warmed up pushing a mud crawlway) but they stayed in there 10 ½
hours. Over 10 miles of cave is surveyed
now, and she’s still going. The Old
Entrance is still plugged, unstable, they dig it open, but it slumps shut at
the next rain.
Saturday 5/17/08 – trip to Pocahontas
Poor Farm Cave, WVa. Pat
Sims is leader. Trip will leave from HROM at 8a.
6/5-8/08 – Spring VAR/SERA Cave Carnival, Bristol,
Program: Hellhole - second part of the show, filmed
and narrated by Ed Devine. Good video,
General Fund $ 4654.57
Conservation $ 401.09
Equipment Fund $
Thanks for your submissions! Send in your artwork, photos, and
has increased 1 cent as of May 14, 2008.
copies of the BRG
Constitution and NEWEST BRG
Membership List are available at the front desk.
S&T: No report
Membership Proposals –
tabled, nothing new. NSS Membership
brochures are at the front desk.
BRG Website: The new website is AWESOME! Check it out!
Fall VAR trip list will be posted on the site (Pat,
get the list to Dave). Mary Sue Socky
requests the site have a link to the NSS.
Hosting Fall VAR 2008 (Susan Burr) Site is Covington Moose
Lodge. Date: Sept. 19-21.
BRG and JRG are co-hosting
the 2008 Fall VAR. Susan has submitted a
- Phil Lucas is our Saturday night guest
- Susan has paid $200.00 to rent
- The proposed registration site
(edge of the parking lot, by old garage) has NO ELECTRICITY. We can work around that, but we DO need
more “pop-up” tents, in addition to Pat’s
- Saturday night dinner will be
held in the Bingo Hall of the
Moose Lodge, so we’re under cover if it rains.
- Susan is working on fall VAR
stuff – she can get 250 “cozies” with Fall VAR logo on them for
$158.00. (see new business)
- Pat Sims will get the Fall VAR
cave trips list to Dave, so it
can be posted on the website.
- Fall VAR has app. 15 cave
trips; more trips and trip leaders will be appreciated.
Syndrome (WNS) nothing new
to report. Scientists still DO NOT know what is sickening, killing the bats, or how
it is spread. There is a symposium to be
held in June that may give more details about WNS.
- Please see websites, etc. to
stay up to date on what has been found, and current proper caver “gear
- Check VAR Limited
Access Cave List
for new updates. Several closed
caves have been opened for the summer to cavers.
Roanoke Valley Rescue Challenge 2008 – went
very well. 130 Rescue personnel from
around the state came to Roanoke
Valley for a week of
special training. They did mock vertical
rescues from the Mill Mountain Star, to mock cave rescues in Catawba Murder
Hole and New Dixie Cave, VA. BRG members were glad to help with site access and
to be “guardian angels” in CMH. Roanoke Valley will be host site in 2009, also.
Education with 150 BSA at
the Grand Caverns Camporee 5/3/2008. Marian McConnell and Mary
Sue Socky talked with 6 groups of scouts about cave safety
and conservation, landowner permission, showed slide program. Scoutmaster Danny
Dreelin was impressed!
BRG Pool Party. Do we want to have
one in 2008? YES! When? Proposed
in place of the meeting (and hopefully avoid the bluegrass festival). Date
tabled, will get with pool personnel and try for Aug 16; rain date Aug 17.
Dixie Caverns Haunted Cave 2008 – Is a GO. The 9 nights
of Hell will be held only on Friday and Saturday nights for the entire
month of October this year. (Those nights have been the only money-makers for
the caverns). Mary
Sue Socky will coordinate the cavers; David
Hawks will be Haunted Cave Director. Oct. 3, 4,10,11,17, 18, 24, 25, 31.
Susan Burr requested that BRG pay for “give away” cozies for Fall VAR
participants. The beer holders will have
the Fall VAR (humpbacked bridge) logo on it.
Motion by S. Burr: BRG
purchase 250 coozies for $160.00. D.
Socky seconds motion. Vote: 9 for, 1
anti. Motion passes.
JE Pearson, who is hosting a karst
symposium the week before Fall VAR in Lewisburg, WVA (Sept. 17-19). John Pearson wanted to know if BRG would be willing to donate funds to the
Socky motions that BRG donate
$150.00 to the symposium. Pat Sims seconds.
CLOSED CAVE LIST is available. We have a
few hardcopies for folks. Some caves
have re-opened for the summer.
Marian McConnell, Dan
McConnell, and Carl Cornett will be
leading 14 beginner cave trips through Roanoke City P&R
this summer! They are caving lots, even
if we don’t see them that much, and they are “taking some heat” off BRG getting numerous requests for beginner cave
trips. The trips are in Island Ford and
Tawney’s, and are for beginners and conservation clean-ups with summer camps
and Girl Scouts.
reported on receiving a strange phone call from a “gushy” guy from the Nature
Conservancy. Al could not get a word in
edgewise… Anyway, the guy wanted to thank BRG
for the conservancy donation.
- Thank You letters for BRG’s generosity with 2007 Haunted Cave
funds from WVACS
- 2008 SERA/VAR brochures, describing the
upcoming weekend in June 2008.
- NSS Convention
2008 (Lake City FL)
Aug. 11-15, 2008 registration info.
- 2008 Nittany
Grotto 60th Anniversary/MAR preregistration form. (Oct 10-12)
- Available from NSS Bookstore:
“Vertical Bill: The
Story of Bill Cuddington and
the Development of Vertical Caving in America”. On sale $28.00 - $32.00
Meeting ended 8:45p.
Minutes submitted by