BLUE RIDGE GROTTO
Pat Sims Al Stewart Mary
Sue Socky Dave
Susan Burr Marian McConnell Carl Cornett *Carol Massey (sp?)
*Laura Richardson *Alan
Staton Aaron Moses
Doug Feller *Nick Socky
Higginbotham #4 Cave, WV, BRG Grotto
Shortt, Aaron Moses, Susan Burr,
and Pat Sims. Found the Back Door entrance to #4. It was a tight crack
that led to a climb down into a room. At one end of the room was a tight
hole that led to a 35 foot drop. Both
tight spots where just big enough for Dave
Socky. The entrance was the smallest, although the hole before the drop
was very awkward. We connected in to the main #4 stream passage about 200
feet from the 35 foot drop. We went downstream to the end, then back
to the entrance. Aaron submerged himself in the cold water of the stream
Higginbotham #3 to # 1 Cave, WV, BRG
Grotto Trip: David
Aaron Moses, and Rickey Shortt
(Rickey did just one entrance.) Aaron and Dave
did a traverse from one entrance to another. Consisted mostly of a hands
and knees stream crawl except for one side lead which went for about 100 to
150 feet. This side lead had a section were the floor was covered by
hundreds of spherical rocks about .5 to 1 inches in diameter. Almost
like ball bearings. They were 3 to 4 inches thick in one section.
At the end of the stream crawl, Dave Socky sat in the pool up to my neck for
some pictures by Rickey.
While the others were crawling over natures’ ball bearings, Pat Sims and Susan Burr
visited the small but nicely decorated Higginbotham’s
# 2 Cave, WV.
Paxton Cave VA: David
Socky, Alex Sproul, Frank Long (friend of Bud),
Bud Shaw, Tray (19 year old boy
and boyfriend of Bud's second oldest
daughter), Phoebe Shaw (13 year
old girl, daughter of Bud).
This trip was to let Frank show us where a passage that no one knew about
was located. After getting turned around in the entrance maze, I found
the way to the Register Room (the little mud slope climb up). We made
it to the First Formation Room where Frank realized that he really couldn't
remember exactly where this passage was. We checked out the formations for
a while and then headed out. It was a pretty short, but pleasant trip.
Dan & Marian McConnell took a NC BSA troop to the middle levels of Catawba Murder Hole, VA.
Porters Cave, VA TV filming trip: Alex Sproul, Dave Socky, Nick Socky, Susan Burr,
Marian McConnell, Alan Staton, Casey Arc, Doug Feller,
Pat Sims, Trish Geiger, Bob Thren,
Cindy Hutchison, Gregory W. Harmon (Boy
Scouts), Denise Allen Membreno (Producer),
J. Rodney Billingsley (Cameraman).
Filming for Cox Inside/Outside TV show. Did some vertical with Doug
Feller and Dave Socky. When done filming, did the easy
loop past the keyhole. Then they went to Big Slit. Pat, Doug, Dave,
and Nick went up. Everyone else took pictures.
Hole fencing project part 1: Mary
Sue, Dave Socky, Rick Shortt, Leanne Barley
and more cavers from JRG, VPI and
NRVG cleared brush, dug holes and cemented upright posts for the Pig Hole fence. Don Anderson (NRVG) and Joe Zokaites
(VPI) headed up the project.
11/9/2008: Mary Sue Socky, Susan Burr,
Marian McConnell, Carl Cornett,
Pat Sims and Nick Socky took members of BSA T-221 through Tawney’s Cave, VA. Everyone
did well, and Susan remarked that she had lots of fun on this BSA trip.
Hole fencing project part 2: Dave Socky,
Carl Cornett, Aaron Moses, Rick Shortt, Leanne Barley,
Susan Burr, Pat
Sims and more cavers from VPI,
NRVG, and JRG removed the old barb wire perimeter fence around Pig
Hole entrance pit, put up new improved fencing and cross posts, set the new
gate access to the Pig Hole Fence
in rain and cold miserable weather. The
project is complete, and owner Cecil Porterfield
is happy with caver efforts. Don Anderson (NRVG) and Joe Zokaites (VPI) headed up the project.
WVCC Banquet, Lewisburg, WV: David
Socky, Mary Sue Socky,
Nick Socky, Al Stewart drove up for the evening of food and 3-D caving. Good to see others from WVCC; Alex Sproul, Meredith
Hall Weberg and Bob
Thren were also in attendance. On the way home, Dave’s
red Honda Civic attacked yet another deer.
23 (Sunday) – It’s a GO! Dave Socky and Phil Lucas set up a BRG trip to the “Water
Sinks” Cave, on Phil &
Charlotte’s property. We will meet
at 8:30a HROM on Sunday, 11/23/2008.
20 – BRG trip to Porter Cave, VA.
Dave Socky is leader. Destination:
Straight up into the Big
PROGRAM: Two excellent slide shows. 1) Pig Hole Fencing Project,
photos by Leanne Barley. 2) Adventures
in TAG, narration and photos by Aaron Moses. (Everyone was encouraging Aaron to submit his
photos to the 2009 NSS Members Manual.)
Equipment Fund $ 341.00
Cave Bucks $
Total: $ 7,290.50
Newsletter: Keep the info,
photos, and excellent articles coming in!
Dec. cover will feature the BRG
Pay your 2009 dues!
S&T: vertical training
session (Rockwood?) sometime in January 2009.
& Means: vacant
Membership Proposals –
tabled. NSS Membership brochures are
at the front desk.
NEW! – Alan Staton, NSS
58584 RE, submitted his membership letter (in verse). Alan is sponsored by Dave
Socky, seconded by Susan Burr. Alan’s proposal is tabled, to be voted on in
BRG Website: grotto website is doing fine. The 2008 Fall VAR website has gone away.
Haunted Cave 2008 – was a success.
Four grottos raised $2000.00 for cave conservation.
10 volunteers provided 30% of haunting, earned $600.00
– 2 volunteers provided 3% of haunting, earned $60.00
VPI – 18 volunteers provided 28% of haunting, earned
BRG – 16 volunteers provided
39% of haunting, earned $780.00
addition, Dixie Caverns sent a gift of $700.00 to BRG
saying “Thanks for being our local grotto”.
year’s volunteer coordinator will be Jen Perdue.
PIG HOLE FENCING: Is
completed. Owner is very happy. BRG
donated the additional $50 we proposed if needed, to help with the over budget
alumni will probably take care of remaining expenses.
WNS – Marian sez, check
cave updates on the VAR Limited Access Cave List, avoid closed caves, and
CLEAN YOUR GEAR to prevent the spread of White Nose Syndrome in bats. Scientists have discovered a previously unknown
fungus that may or may not be the cause of what is killing so many hibernating
BRG Christmas Dinner – Friday,
Dec. 19, 2008 @ Mamma Maria’s. $16.00
per person. You have to pay extra for your own drinks. We need 25 people pre-registered to get our
$75.00 deposit returned. Please sign up, pay treasurer. Thanks! The
2008 Buffet menu has been chosen:
Fettuccini Alfredo, Meatballs, Sausage Napolenta.
Christmas Card design – “Caver Snowman with Bat” submitted by Marian McConnell. Marian and Mary Sue will get together, get cards
printed, mailed to landowners in the next few weeks.
No new nominations. Slate is closed.
Two absentee ballots were received.
Sims proposed that BRG vote on
the current slate of officers as is stands.
Al Stewart seconded motion.
8 voted to accept the slate. 1 voted against. PASSED.
The NEW BRG
officers for 2009 are:
Susan Burr NSS # 53888
Socky, NSS # 16334
Aaron Moses, NSS # 54801
Carl Cornett, NSS # 56641
- 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
- NEW VAR CLOSED CAVE LIST is available.
We have a few hardcopies for folks.
There are updates, winter closures, and new info on WNS.