Beginner's trip to Schoharie, NY: Becker's Cave, Schoharie Caverns
A Summary of the Schoharie Cave Trip (Sept. 28, 2003)
A perspective from a beginner...
I went with 6 other strangers on a Sunday morning (when I probably should have been studying for all my stupid tests). We drove for nearly 3 hours into upstate NY (it was pouring rain for the whole ride and at parts the rain was so heavy we couldn't see anything out the car window!) Once we got out into the country area there was a small town that we passed that looked very European. There was a chapel in which bells were ringing (probably for the town mass or something like that). It was really peaceful! Then the disaster started... The cave entrance was on the side of some hill and it was TINY - absolutely miniscule. One had to crawl on their belly to get in through the opening! CRAWL on MY BELLY!!! it was horrifyingly gross... and there were sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo many spiders (daddy long-leg type) and mosquitos... and lots and lots and lots of mud! We continued crawling around in this overly tiny space for nearly 3 hours (at least it seemed like it) until we hit a fork in the tunnel. Going left, led us to a dead end, but going right led us to a rather large puddle of water. All the guys went crawling through it (I guess for fun). It was quite disgusting and I kept freaking out! (I never really screamed, I just cursed a lot and I apologize to those who had to listen to me!)
Once we squeezed back out, we changed and went to lunch at the only open diner. After lunch we ventured to another cave. We had to slip back on our cold and muddy clothes from the previous excursion (fun). This next cave had water...a lot of water...The water started at your shins and GOLLY GEE that was some cold FREEZING water. We kept going for like another 3 hours in freezing cold water (I can't believe my feet hadn't frozen off by then. As we went deeper into the cave the water level climbed higher and higher, at one point the water went past my hips and soaked the bottom seams of my sweater (yuck). But this cave was absolutely magnificent. The walls crept upwards into a solid rock ceiling almost 20 feet up. I saw bats right next to my face. They were soooo cute small and furry and they wouldn't move even if I shone my headlight on it. I wanted to pet them they were right next to my hand, but I chose not to hurt the environment even more than I was (we were afterall sloshing around in the cave water bringing in foreign bacteria and such).
After all that I'm still alive-yay! That was certainly an interesting beginner's caving trip...so..when's the next one? :)
~christine fanchiang :D
Last Modified: Mon Oct 27 08:45:04 2003 by krobinso