Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Cave conservation issues, techniques, questions. Also visit the NSS Cave Conservation and Management Section.

Moderator: Moderators

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby caverdan » Aug 11, 2009 1:00 pm

I still don't understand why we aren't working on buying this claim. Who is to stop someone from digging straight down into the cave or mine the overburden off the top. I realize we will have to continually pay for the claim each year, but we could lease it back to the original claim holders for that amount and have free access for NSS members to map and explore. If only it was in Colorado........... :argue:
Member: Colorado Madrats, SoCoMoGro,CWSG.
caverdan
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 647
Joined: Nov 24, 2006 9:39 pm
Location: Colorado Springs
NSS #: 40262
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Aug 11, 2009 3:48 pm

I guess it would depend on price huh? it seems that while this cave was pretty, it was also somewhat remote. A local could probably say what the traffic level was. Course maybe we could sell calcite countertops as a fundraiser ( j/k) :tonguecheek:
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
User avatar
wyandottecaver
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2902
Joined: Aug 24, 2007 8:44 pm
Location: Indiana
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby bringiton » Aug 12, 2009 1:04 am

Hello All,

I was actually interviewed for this news story but because of time our interview was cut. My name is Adam Simon. Jenna Lisonbee is my co-host for a travel show called the Nomad Agents. The site will be up this week. http://www.nomadagents.com. I realize some people are friends of gold rush tours in some of these forums. I have taken a look at the postings by Mr. Shuman and am a little disturbed. Granted, I do not purport to be a cave expert. I am not. I am a security consultant and entertainer. However, let me share with you what I do know.

We spent three days with the Bates family; we took a film crew in and recorded the inside of the cave. Mr. Shuman assertions of multiple cases of vandalism are entirely false. The cave was in great condition. The Bates family told us of one instance of vandalism where an individual had brought a gun and shot the locks on the door of the cave and gained entrance to it. One formation was disturbed. Other than that the cave has experienced no vandalism over the years that the Bates family has maintained it.

The purpose of our show is to find hard to reach destinations, find needs at those destinations and help them fix it. It is incredibly ironic that we contacted local businesses who offered to donate a security system, and cameras that would allow grade school kids to view the cave remotely. After we wrapped our shoot we were going to return later in the week to help the family to this end. Two days later GRE filed its claim. The footage of the inside of the cave will be available online soon. I will let you know when we post it up. I think it will provide a wider scope to judge than Mr. Shumans face book photos.

Obviously there is sentimental value in this to the Bates family. They have maintained this site for so long. They let the mining claims lapse because they had an agreement with BLM concerning the cave and were working a preservation angle with the state, an endeavour our show was trying to help facilitate. Unfortunately this agreement with BLM representatives was done with words and handshakes. Gerald Bates is a good old boy who had assurances for BLM reps that an agreement would be worked shortly which would allow the Bates to maintain possession of the cave and continue to preserve it. I agree that legally they let it lapse, GRE filed their claim and now they own it, but Mr. Shuman's statements are misleading. You have to understand that Gandy Utah has a population of 20. It's tiny. The Bates are great people who just want to keep the cave safe, preserved and with their family, where it has been for 50 plus years.

This notion that the cave was in peril and that Gold Rush Expeditions is the white knight Savior of the site is ridiculous. I ask anyone to look into the company's past. Are they truly about preservation? Or making a buck? I stopped listening to GRE'S side the minute they threw the rights for sale up on E-bay, something the Bates would never have done. The only thing Shuman is preserving is his pocketbook.

Adam Simon
bringiton
New Poster
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 12, 2009 12:32 am
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Phil Winkler » Aug 12, 2009 7:40 am

Thanks for that Adam. Your explanation makes a whole lot more sense then any of the others.
Phil Winkler
13627 FE
User avatar
Phil Winkler
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 2371
Joined: Sep 5, 2005 8:48 am
Location: Wilmington, DE and Dewey Beach
NSS #: 13627FE
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby caverdan » Aug 12, 2009 8:11 am

Thanks Adam for the added insite, Can't wait to see the finished web site. Welcome to the discussion board.

wyandottecaver wrote:I guess it would depend on price huh? it seems that while this cave was pretty, it was also somewhat remote. A local could probably say what the traffic level was. Course maybe we could sell calcite countertops as a fundraiser ( j/k) :tonguecheek:


$10,000.00 is not much in comparison to ..........a flagstone walkway in front of our local court house.......a new Ford truck........a cave we own in Wyoming....... and as long as we mine less than 1000 tons of countertop material..... :argue:

Seriously.....we should be working all angles on this.....including possible purchase if need be. :yikes:
Member: Colorado Madrats, SoCoMoGro,CWSG.
caverdan
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 647
Joined: Nov 24, 2006 9:39 pm
Location: Colorado Springs
NSS #: 40262
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Aug 12, 2009 9:41 am

caverdan wrote:Thanks Adam for the added insite, Can't wait to see the finished web site. Welcome to the discussion board.

wyandottecaver wrote:I guess it would depend on price huh? it seems that while this cave was pretty, it was also somewhat remote. A local could probably say what the traffic level was. Course maybe we could sell calcite countertops as a fundraiser ( j/k) :tonguecheek:


$10,000.00 is not much in comparison to ..........a flagstone walkway in front of our local court house.......a new Ford truck........a cave we own in Wyoming....... and as long as we mine less than 1000 tons of countertop material..... :argue:

Seriously.....we should be working all angles on this.....including possible purchase if need be. :yikes:

Dan, and everyone. The cave cannot be purchased. Purchasing the claim over the cave cannot purchase the cave. Please give the BLM some time to work through this, and believe me, they are working on it. Repeat, the cave cannot be purchased.
Dale Green
NSS 3669FE
Caverdale
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Sep 4, 2005 10:49 pm
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Name: Dale Green
NSS #: 3669FE, LB
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Salt Lake Grotto
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby caverdan » Aug 12, 2009 1:35 pm

Dale,
Wouldn't the NSS purchasing these claims be the same as saving the cave?..... even if it doesn't grant access to the cave? I'm guessing someone could dig on the claim and hit cave sooner or later. 1000 ton is equal to 50 end dump semi trucks worth of material. That's quite a hole. How much overburden is over this cave?....if you don't mind me asking. By preventing that digging....... by the NSS owning the property above it makes since to me.
Member: Colorado Madrats, SoCoMoGro,CWSG.
caverdan
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 647
Joined: Nov 24, 2006 9:39 pm
Location: Colorado Springs
NSS #: 40262
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby caverdaveutah » Aug 12, 2009 2:42 pm

Wouldn't the NSS purchasing these claims be the same as saving the cave?


No, it is not the same. Purchasing these mining claims would not save the cave in any way, as the cave in question is not currently in any real danger.

Could somebody mine away a large piece of the mountain, and expose and damage the cave in the process? Certainly. But why in the world would anybody want to do so, considering that such mining would be very expensive and time consuming? Unless all they wanted to do was mine away a beautiful and interesting natural cave, which seems unlikely.

The mining claim owner would like you to think that the cave is in danger, and needs to be saved, by paying him lots of money for the claims. However, not all salesmen are completely honest, and buyers should beware, and be informed of the facts before significant purchases like this one.

caverdaveutah
caverdaveutah
New Poster
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 11, 2009 6:14 pm
NSS #: 37102
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby caverdaveutah » Aug 12, 2009 2:46 pm

by the NSS owning the property above it


Purchasing a mining claim does not give ownership of the land in question. A mining claim gives ownership and rights to the valuable minerals underneath the land, not the land itself. The land (and cave) in question is owned and managed by the BLM, and purchasing the mining claims would not change that fact.

caverdaveutah
caverdaveutah
New Poster
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Aug 11, 2009 6:14 pm
NSS #: 37102
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Aug 12, 2009 4:37 pm

Just talked with the local BLM person. His advice was that very best thing we can do now is just to let them go through their procedures, which can take some time. In the meantime, please take the words of Glenn Carpenter, the District Office Manager over the area to heart when he said on the telly a few days ago, "No one is going to destroy the cave." Patience is a virtue.
Dale Green
NSS 3669FE
Caverdale
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 219
Joined: Sep 4, 2005 10:49 pm
Location: Salt Lake City, UT
Name: Dale Green
NSS #: 3669FE, LB
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Salt Lake Grotto
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Grandpa Caver » Aug 12, 2009 5:44 pm

Caverdale wrote:Just talked with the local BLM person. His advice was that very best thing we can do now is just to let them go through their procedures, which can take some time. In the meantime, please take the words of Glenn Carpenter, the District Office Manager over the area to heart when he said on the telly a few days ago, "No one is going to destroy the cave." Patience is a virtue.


Makes sense to me but a very close eye shoud be kept on the situation. It makes no sense to me to spend even the "measly" sum of 10 grand to purchase a claim that does not effectively protect the cave and may in fact be offically deemed invalid and useless. And in the meantime, what if someone not conservation minded actually purchases the claim(s) on EBAY. How might that complicate the issue?

Hey...it's the government (at least in part) we're dealing with here. They'll do what they do and all we can hope for is to try and steer them in the right direction. Maybe they could designate the area a "natural wonder" or something and protect it in that way? We definately need to keep an ear to the underground on this one.
Brian Leavell
NSS 21862FE
User avatar
Grandpa Caver
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 425
Joined: Sep 5, 2005 5:37 pm
Location: Indiana
Name: Brian Leavell
NSS #: 21862FE
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Eastern Indiana Grotto
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Gold_Rush_Expedinc » Aug 12, 2009 5:45 pm

Thats interesting that Glenn had that to say, hes contradicted some very basic federal law, and he should have litigation papers on his desk from GRE to prove it. I hope he still has a job and a pension when this is over. no, I take it back, I dont.
But I digress, some of the points here are pretty sad, Ive only seen a few people that actually understand what is going on and what needs to be done about it.
As to the Bates, I hold no ill will towards them. However, as the messiahs of the cave, I think not. The pics show the destruction in the cave, and its not from bullets. Its from people hacking and beating on things inside.
For those that want to villanize us, go for it, I know what we do, and I dont answer to you. But there are new pics up on Gold Rush Expeditions (http://www.goldrushexpeditions.com) that show the condition of the outside of the site when we filed the claims. It looks abandoned, there is junk all over and trash strewn everywhere. So to those of you who claim to have just been out there with the Bates, its interesting that you just sidestepped all of this junk.
Gold_Rush_Expedinc
Infrequent Poster
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Aug 3, 2009 5:22 pm
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Aug 12, 2009 6:22 pm

its too bad some folks cant disagree agreeably. When you foam at the mouth or babble, people tend to discount you even if your basic position may have merit. I see no devils here nor saints wearing BLM patches either.
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
User avatar
wyandottecaver
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2902
Joined: Aug 24, 2007 8:44 pm
Location: Indiana
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Bill Putnam » Aug 12, 2009 7:59 pm

Instead of arguing about this, why don't you guys just make him an offer, cut a deal to buy him out, and then run a fundraising campaign in the caving community to recoup the cost? I know it's a matter of principle and all that, but you cannot count on the government to do the right thing and fix this, and it will cost a lot more than $10K to take this to court (plus you still might not win).

So just face up to the fact that we missed an opportunity here (and the government ignored its responsibility for 20+ years) and this guy caught us all with our pants down. We (the caving community) were stupid to allow this situation to occur when we had ample time to address it and prevent it. Yes, he is taking advantage of that mistake to make money. Life sucks. Shit happens. It's time to take our licks, deal with it, and move on.

I will contribute to a fund to buy this guy out and put this issue to rest. I'm sure others will as well, but it will take some effort and commitment on the part of the local caving community to make it happen. Stop bitching and whining and make the deal.
Bill Putnam, NSS 21117 RL/FE
Chairman and Chief Troublemaker
The Revolutionary Hodag Party - Thinking outside the cave.

The jackal can roar,
pretending to be a lion.
The lion is not fooled.
User avatar
Bill Putnam
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 1082
Joined: Sep 5, 2005 5:23 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA
NSS #: 21117
Primary Grotto Affiliation: Revolutionary Hodag Party
  

Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Aug 12, 2009 8:17 pm

dang! commercial caves and commercial mines are the only things safe from the USFWS...maybe the formation peddlers had it right after all! j/k :tonguecheek:
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
User avatar
wyandottecaver
NSS Hall Of Fame Poster
 
Posts: 2902
Joined: Aug 24, 2007 8:44 pm
Location: Indiana
  

PreviousNext

Return to Conservation Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users