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Gneiss Dome Cave Development and Ridgewalking

PostPosted: Sep 16, 2012 9:15 pm
by Buford
I am now living six months a year in the Southern Appalachian (NC) Mountains, and am ridgewalking an area looking for caves formed in gneiss domes. My discovery rate to date has been appx one cave per hour of searching, but dense shrub thickets and steep slopes make the exercise quite exhausting. I’m not getting any younger, so I need to be ridgewalking smart. That is, I aim to learn enough about gneiss dome cave development to be able to predict the highest- and lowest-probability areas. Several hours of looking online for papers on this subject has produced very few titles or information that I can use. Oldtimers tell me they primarily followed leads, only rarely doing any ridgewalking, and have pointed me to only one single paper discussing gneiss dome cave development and none re any ridgewalking methodologies. They also say I am the only caver they know of ridgewalking these geological structures today, although I bet there are some silent gneiss ridgewalkers out here and I sure would like to find them. I will continue to query Internet search engines, but would appreciate any online links about this subject that anyone here would be willing to provide. Thanks!