TriTrogs General meeting January 2012

NC Museum of Natural Sciences
January 24, 2012

Previous meeting: November 22nd (Minutes available online)
Last “meeting” Holiday Party Dec 10th

Attendees: 18 Cavers: Howard Holgate, Greg Dahlin, Mark Little, Norm Bedwell, Jen Bedwell, Mike Broome, Lisa Lorenzin, Martin Groenewegen, Matthew Weiss, Michael Caslin, Carlin Kartchner, Peter Hertl, Ben Gaspar, Ken Walsh, Mark Daughtridge, Matthew Lubin, Bithika Khargharia, Amar Chawla

General socializing 7:30 to 7:41
Meeting start 7:41

Old Business
Discussed T-shirts and posting a voting mechanism on line.
TriTrogs are making a donation to our host, the museum. It’s ready just need to send it- Mark L
Vertical- Pete almost ready, needs a brief work day to setup new ropes etc
Pete, Ken, Pete, Martin and Mark L have equipment for beginners to learn on. Pete targeting March.
Review of Treasurer’s Report (Mark L) No questions were raised.
Payment of 2012 Dues (All, we hope) Many folks paid for 2012, please contact Mark L if you still need to pay dues for this year.
Join the NSS! Why to join, etc- A few folks mentioned good reasons to join such as the NSS Journal with great photos etc each month, contributing to conservation, eligibility for benefits such as some activities/caves that require it and discounts on others like convention etc

NSS Annual Report/Info Updates (Mark D) brief mention of how we update our officer info etc each year and the need for a new paper mail address to give them.
e-mail from Student, Amy Y. looking for March 10-18 cave trip (conservation) near Great Smoky Mts NP Ken and a couple of others have responded, mainly referring them to other grottos such as the western NC grotto Flittermouse.

New Business
Elections deferred to later in the meeting as a few members had called to say they were on the way.

Upcoming Trips1-27 Paxton’s again Mark D to lead, Pete, Greg, Matthew, Martin interested, maybe not this wknd though, some prefer 2/18
Feb 11 Survey Trip to Cold Sink Cave- stay at Tanya’s house in Marion VA, tight spaces/crawls for shots coming up. Possible digs/leads Carlin leading
March 29-Apr 1 Cave Rescue Class Harrisonburg, VA See Just the orientation, but full weekend
4/8 Grand Caverns Restoration –Easter wknd
Ben Gaspar- educator w/ Northern High School Adventure Ed , took 8-9 high school seniors to simple cave , looking for another to do. Worley’s in TN suggested, could do cleanup during the trip, Tanya M knows conservation opportunities too. 4-21to 22, 5/5-6 dates preferred

4/27 – 29 Spring VAR Poor Farm Festival Grounds, Williamsburg, WV See
6/24-29 NSS Convention- Lewisburg/ Greenbrier Cnty WV (5hr drive) See consider going beyond stated dates for geology, history, etc sessions,

Program (this month the program consisted only of trip reports over the 2 months since last meeting, as there was enough to discuss for the meeting after that interval)

Trip reports
Paxton’s – 10 TriTrogs descended on Paxton’s Cave near Covington, VA on January 2nd. Throne room had cool helictites, a small translucent drapery, and an impressive small bacon formation. Also a stalagmite that reportedly is crystallized enough to reflect very bright light for a second or so after they are extinguished. Without a powerful flash we didn’t get it to display this trait. We also visited the big room, found some cool fungus, and explored the breakdown room but failed to find the helictite room. It was cool to come out and find snow on the ground. The maze of this was fun challenge for navigating back to the waterfall entrance too.

Burnsville cove- Lisa & Mike, layers of limestone, looking at exposed rock, geology survey, no drilling, are looking @ road cuts etc. old books disagree about how formed. USGS geologist there. Butler cave and others in area had sandstone cap, multi layer, showed them 6hrs on surface 1hr underground tidal flats, fossils, where layers of cave ceilings and floors emerge aboveground outdoors, will name some rocks after the area possibly.

Carlin- Thanksgiving wknd, went to Santee Lakes State Park , SC found some sinks, ridgewalking, were ½ mile off from where cave turned out to be. Cave closed by USFS. Very wet at entrance, largest cave in SC? Other sinks nearby.

Carlin reported on Germany Valley- camped in cave, had a great lead climber who helped set up water collection system. Huge room with 300 foot ceiling, 600 ft below ground, lead in nearby dome room explored too. Carlin’s 1st camping trip underground. Need experience and vertical experience w/ re-belays etc. for this cave
On way back stopped by Smokehole caverns commercial, didn’t do the tour; Luray- did do the tour, wishing well impressively full of coins, donated to charity

Carlin also showed pictures from a southwest cave he’s been meaning do for a while, Southern AZ, near Mexican border, Alan Pressler only one he knew who’d been there. Very deep, Havelina droppings outside, not sure if animals inside cave such as rattlesnakes. Large bat- Townsends? 7” or so? Nice fossils, one team member studying climate change/cave research, one mine engineering, so good info. Dolomite rock. Found scorpion in the wall crack. Found fox skeleton in cave
Very tricky vertical pit, tight, 325 tied to 125, with decent place to do knot crossing.

N. Raleigh hole discussed on e-mail turned out to be small and probably from storm drain leak

Michael and Matthew described Worley’s TN trip with great pics with portable flood light

Election of Officers (Howard)
With the last 3 members now present we quickly elected a new slate of officers for 2012:
Carlin Kartchner- Chair
Ken Walsh- Vice Chair
Mark Daughtridge- Secretary
Mark Little- Treasurer
Mike Broome- Web Editor

Meeting done at 9:30
After the meeting– Fox and Hound at North Hills, courtesy of Matthew Lubin! Thanks! About 10 folks went and enjoyed free wings, pizza and non-free beer.