Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

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Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Jul 13, 2016 7:22 pm

Hi cavers, i'm Steve from Connecticut (NSS 61110) I have a small group of cavers coming down to WV in the middle of August and we would like to do a through trip in Bone-Norman. We've been there before, But since we're not super familiar with the cave we're a little leery of attempting a through trip without a guide. Is anyone out there willing to come with us and lead the trip?
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Jul 20, 2016 2:24 pm

I have a group of 7 going through on August 13. We're not going to stop and smell the roses, so you probably don't want to tag along with us, but maybe we'll see you there!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Jul 23, 2016 10:13 am

dirkomatic wrote:I have a group of 7 going through on August 13. We're not going to stop and smell the roses, so you probably don't want to tag along with us, but maybe we'll see you there!

We're going there on the 20th so unless you get REALLY lost we probably won't see you there lol. My post has over 1000 views and no one seems interested in leading the trip for us so we'll probably just hit the norman entrance and head down to the great white way. I know lots of people do the through trip but since we're not familiar with the cave I'd rather err on the side of caution and not risk getting lost. Have a great trip when you go on the 13th!!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Jul 25, 2016 10:34 am

It's a good idea to be cautious, although if you do change your mind, the way is pretty well marked if you pay attention.

Hope you have a good trip!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Jul 26, 2016 3:33 pm

dirkomatic wrote:It's a good idea to be cautious, although if you do change your mind, the way is pretty well marked if you pay attention.

Hope you have a good trip!

Oh it is? Well maybe we'll give it a try then!! Thanks !!!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby ohiocaver » Jul 27, 2016 10:15 am

I'm not an uber-caver but I wouldn't term this as easy...then again,I've done it successfully only twice, and never from Norman. So my word of advice would be to do the connection from Bone. The Norman side is quite mazey and I find the connection much more difficult to find (okay, I've never found it). Bone is one room after another. Go to the back of Bone then backtrack one room. Look for a crack on the right wall. This is the beginning of the "quarter-mile crawl." The pinch is ahead through a tight belly squeeze. Once you get through the Devils Pinch you're on your own. Find the water in Norman, go upstream, and it leads out. Do you know Norman? In the water passage you'll eventually come to a big waterfall (maybe 20' and usually flowing fast). Backtrack a few feet and, on the right as you came upstream, is a short upclimb and crawl parallel to the waterfall, that leads to the big exit room. Go up the breakdown to the exit (which should be obvious if it is light out). If you climb up into a room with big columns and formations (Totem Pole Room), you went back downstream too far. The exit climb is between Totem Pole Room and the falls.
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Jul 27, 2016 3:23 pm

Steve_S wrote:
dirkomatic wrote:It's a good idea to be cautious, although if you do change your mind, the way is pretty well marked if you pay attention.

Hope you have a good trip!

Oh it is? Well maybe we'll give it a try then!! Thanks !!!


Of course, that's coming from the Bone side... I've never done the "Shake and bake" route.
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Jul 27, 2016 3:28 pm

ohiocaver wrote:I'm not an uber-caver but I wouldn't term this as easy...then again,I've done it successfully only twice, and never from Norman. So my word of advice would be to do the connection from Bone. The Norman side is quite mazey and I find the connection much more difficult to find (okay, I've never found it). Bone is one room after another. Go to the back of Bone then backtrack one room. Look for a crack on the right wall. This is the beginning of the "quarter-mile crawl." The pinch is ahead through a tight belly squeeze. Once you get through the Devils Pinch you're on your own. Find the water in Norman, go upstream, and it leads out. Do you know Norman? In the water passage you'll eventually come to a big waterfall (maybe 20' and usually flowing fast). Backtrack a few feet and, on the right as you came upstream, is a short upclimb and crawl parallel to the waterfall, that leads to the big exit room. Go up the breakdown to the exit (which should be obvious if it is light out). If you climb up into a room with big columns and formations (Totem Pole Room), you went back downstream too far. The exit climb is between Totem Pole Room and the falls.


This is completely accurate. I agree, I wouldn't call it easy either... But it is manageable if you have a group willing to help look for the way. I went under the assumption that you had done the trip before and were at least aware on how to find the pinch and the exit at the waterfall as described by ohiocaver. Look for markings throughout the cave after the pinch. They are infrequent, but they usually exist.
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Jul 28, 2016 7:36 pm

dirkomatic wrote:
ohiocaver wrote:I'm not an uber-caver but I wouldn't term this as easy...then again,I've done it successfully only twice, and never from Norman. So my word of advice would be to do the connection from Bone. The Norman side is quite mazey and I find the connection much more difficult to find (okay, I've never found it). Bone is one room after another. Go to the back of Bone then backtrack one room. Look for a crack on the right wall. This is the beginning of the "quarter-mile crawl." The pinch is ahead through a tight belly squeeze. Once you get through the Devils Pinch you're on your own. Find the water in Norman, go upstream, and it leads out. Do you know Norman? In the water passage you'll eventually come to a big waterfall (maybe 20' and usually flowing fast). Backtrack a few feet and, on the right as you came upstream, is a short upclimb and crawl parallel to the waterfall, that leads to the big exit room. Go up the breakdown to the exit (which should be obvious if it is light out). If you climb up into a room with big columns and formations (Totem Pole Room), you went back downstream too far. The exit climb is between Totem Pole Room and the falls.


This is completely accurate. I agree, I wouldn't call it easy either... But it is manageable if you have a group willing to help look for the way. I went under the assumption that you had done the trip before and were at least aware on how to find the pinch and the exit at the waterfall as described by ohiocaver. Look for markings throughout the cave after the pinch. They are infrequent, but they usually exist.


Thank you both for your help and advice!!! No none of us going have ever done it. We explored the Norman side quite a bit and know how to get back from the waterfall, but we haven't been to the bone side at all. I emailed Bill balfour and asked him if he knew of anyone that might want to lead the trip but I haven't heard back yet. I know how mazey the Norman side is after the connection and I'd rather go with someone that has been there before.
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Aug 16, 2016 9:34 am

Steve, not sure if you're still planning on this trip or not, but wanted to let you know that ours was successful. I was paying attention to the markings the entire way... The markings through SOB after the (disappointing after the expansion) pinch are frequent, much more than they used to be. Doing a self-guided through trip is possible and not extremely difficult if you maintain awareness, look intently for markers, follow the arrows marked in carbide (most in spray paint are accurate, but a few are misleading) and go the opposite direction of those arrows marked with a "W" or "B" (assuming you are coming from the Bone entrance.) Be aware that the recent flooding has eliminated some typically evident footprints and made some parts of Norman quite slick and treacherous.

Have fun!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Aug 17, 2016 3:32 pm

dirkomatic wrote:Steve, not sure if you're still planning on this trip or not, but wanted to let you know that ours was successful. I was paying attention to the markings the entire way... The markings through SOB after the (disappointing after the expansion) pinch are frequent, much more than they used to be. Doing a self-guided through trip is possible and not extremely difficult if you maintain awareness, look intently for markers, follow the arrows marked in carbide (most in spray paint are accurate, but a few are misleading) and go the opposite direction of those arrows marked with a "W" or "B" (assuming you are coming from the Bone entrance.) Be aware that the recent flooding has eliminated some typically evident footprints and made some parts of Norman quite slick and treacherous.

Have fun!

Thank you very much!!!! I'm glad your trip was successful!! A few people coming down with me still want to do the trip so I'll pass all the info along. I'll let you know how they make out! The rest of use are hitting McClungs and Boar hole instead. Thanks again for all the information! Steve
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby Steve_S » Aug 27, 2016 7:21 am

Steve_S wrote:
dirkomatic wrote:Steve, not sure if you're still planning on this trip or not, but wanted to let you know that ours was successful. I was paying attention to the markings the entire way... The markings through SOB after the (disappointing after the expansion) pinch are frequent, much more than they used to be. Doing a self-guided through trip is possible and not extremely difficult if you maintain awareness, look intently for markers, follow the arrows marked in carbide (most in spray paint are accurate, but a few are misleading) and go the opposite direction of those arrows marked with a "W" or "B" (assuming you are coming from the Bone entrance.) Be aware that the recent flooding has eliminated some typically evident footprints and made some parts of Norman quite slick and treacherous.

Have fun!

Thank you very much!!!! I'm glad your trip was successful!! A few people coming down with me still want to do the trip so I'll pass all the info along. I'll let you know how they make out! The rest of use are hitting McClungs and Boar hole instead. Thanks again for all the information! Steve


Well my friends did the through trip! It took them 7 1/2 hours but they made it through lol. Thank you again for your help!!
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Re: Anyone willing to lead a Bone-Norman through trip?

Postby dirkomatic » Aug 27, 2016 8:35 pm

Glad they made it successfully!
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