Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

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Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby msm0711 » Dec 25, 2013 8:11 pm

I've got a small group of cavers from Savannah, GA, headed west in Mid-January to do some caving at Pigeon Mountain. We were hoping to shoot west a bit more on MLK day (1/20/14) and visit Neversink and Stephens Gap before heading home Monday night. Though we've got directions, we'd love to meet up with some local cavers and get the shake down on the area. We'd also be enthralled to meet any one from any of the local grottos out there who have ideas for people looking to form a new grotto (in the Savannah area) some time in 2014. If anyone's interested in hanging out for the day, please let me know!
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby UnderGroundEarth » Dec 27, 2013 8:23 am

Stephens Gap is closed during hunting season.

Here are the hunting dates for Alabama:
AL Deer Oct 12—Jan 31 / AL Fall Turkey Nov 17—Jan 1


Reference: http://dogwoodcitygrotto.com/files/closedcavelist.pdf

Some other options would be Cagle's Chasm or South Pittsburg Pit both near South Pittsburg, TN.
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby Chads93GT » Dec 27, 2013 11:34 am

I've done Valhalla on mlk weekend with buddy lane. Mystery falls is open. Uhhhhh yeah ;)
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby msm0711 » Dec 27, 2013 6:19 pm

Thanks for the info guys! I hadn't even thought about hunting season until I got a PM about it and saw your post. We'll have to come back in the summer I guess.
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby ryanortega86 » Mar 14, 2015 9:45 am

Just returned from Neversink, and what a blast! Check out the travel video below of our adventure!



Happy caving!
Last edited by ryanortega86 on Jun 8, 2015 10:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby msm0711 » Mar 14, 2015 5:32 pm

I saw the vid on Facebook. Great stuff. I was there 2 weeks ago, but everything was covered in snow!!!!
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby ryanortega86 » Jun 8, 2015 9:54 pm

Hey, msm0711. Thanks for checking out the video. I can't imagine what that place must look like draped in snow. In fact, being from Florida I can hardly imagine anything draped in snow haha. Do you have any pics of the trip?

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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby ryanortega86 » Jun 8, 2015 10:51 pm

msm0711 - After seeing your original post we decided we needed to check out Stephen's Gap, and dear lord are we glad we did. What a gorgeous sight! The weather in mid-March was perfect too! On the way to our destination we stumbled upon a smaller pit along the trail, and I'm wondering why no one has mentioned this pit in any of the forums I've read. Also, we had walkie talkies, but they were drowned out by the hum of the waterfall. Has anyone developed a good communication method for scenarios like this?

Here is a brief video of our trip. We're hoping to do this for every cave owned by the SCCi because of all their great conservation efforts. Happy caving, man!

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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby msm0711 » Jun 9, 2015 5:25 am

ryanortega86 wrote:Hey, msm0711. Thanks for checking out the video. I can't imagine what that place must look like draped in snow. In fact, being from Florida I can hardly imagine anything draped in snow haha. Do you have any pics of the trip?

Ryan



Just a few.... most of the pictures I took during that trip were from Frick's. Also, you mentioned in your video trying to rappel directly onto the pedestal at SG. Just to the left (in the video) of your rig point is a "key hole". If you rap into it you land directly atop the pedestal.

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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby graveleye » Jun 9, 2015 8:01 am

ryanortega86 wrote:msm0711 - After seeing your original post we decided we needed to check out Stephen's Gap, and dear lord are we glad we did. What a gorgeous sight! The weather in mid-March was perfect too! On the way to our destination we stumbled upon a smaller pit along the trail, and I'm wondering why no one has mentioned this pit in any of the forums I've read. Also, we had walkie talkies, but they were drowned out by the hum of the waterfall. Has anyone developed a good communication method for scenarios like this?

Here is a brief video of our trip. We're hoping to do this for every cave owned by the SCCi because of all their great conservation efforts. Happy caving, man!



that little pit is Pipeside. It's well known but most folks skip it to spend more time up at Stephens Gap. It's a nice ~70' drop with a small amount of cave.
Seems like every time I've done it there has been a very dead something at the bottom though.
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby CaverScott » Jun 9, 2015 12:39 pm

ryanortega86 wrote:msm0711 - After seeing your original post we decided we needed to check out Stephen's Gap, and dear lord are we glad we did. What a gorgeous sight! The weather in mid-March was perfect too! On the way to our destination we stumbled upon a smaller pit along the trail, and I'm wondering why no one has mentioned this pit in any of the forums I've read. Also, we had walkie talkies, but they were drowned out by the hum of the waterfall. Has anyone developed a good communication method for scenarios like this?

Here is a brief video of our trip. We're hoping to do this for every cave owned by the SCCi because of all their great conservation efforts. Happy caving, man!



Having grown up and St Pete and going underground the first time ever with the FSS, I can relate to your journey. Is that a "happy dance" of sorts by the person on the bottom at 2:28 in the video? :clap:
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby ryanortega86 » Jun 9, 2015 10:55 pm

msm0711 - Gorgeous pics! I must go back during the winter to experience what you saw! Also, thanks for the tip re the keyhole rappel at Stephen's Gap. We did in fact notice the keyhole and speculated that we could rappel straight through it onto the pedestal, but we hadn't heard of anyone doing this before and didn't know how structurally solid the keyhole was to begin with, so we aired on side of safety and did things the hard way lol

graveleye - pipeside, eh? Good to know! Next time we'll have to check it out. I would love to find some bones down there

CaverScott - That is indeed a glorious and well earned happy dance by our teammate, Ryan. He was the first to make it to the bottom, and I think he danced for about 10 minutes straight off camera lol
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby graveleye » Jun 10, 2015 7:45 am

seems like I heard someone say that we should be very careful with the Keyhole these days as it appears to be getting ready to collapse.
This person was someone in-the-know too, a well respected caver. I'll try to find out more.
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Re: Neversink and Stephens Gap Cave

Postby msm0711 » Jun 10, 2015 1:31 pm

ryanortega86 wrote:msm0711 - Gorgeous pics! I must go back during the winter to experience what you saw! Also, thanks for the tip re the keyhole rappel at Stephen's Gap. We did in fact notice the keyhole and speculated that we could rappel straight through it onto the pedestal, but we hadn't heard of anyone doing this before and didn't know how structurally solid the keyhole was to begin with, so we aired on side of safety and did things the hard way lol


As I recall, there was a local there who told me that was the way to go, and as I was doing it, and my friend was dropping from the other side, I felt I got the short end of the stick. I don't remember any rock fall, but as you can see in the (crappy) pic below, there's obvious a few chocks that could slide 127 hour style.

By the way, if you're ever heading up from Florida and looking for flat landers to go under ground with, let me know. We only have about 6 cavers within 100 miles of us, so we're always on the look out for groups to jump in with.

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