Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

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Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Ernie Coffman » Jul 12, 2009 9:45 am

This article on Cave Next Door just had to come out today, as Oregon Caves--a half mile away--is celebrating its 100th birthday, today. But, that's another story...which I've submitted before.

Cave Next Door has been a digging project by David Hodges of Cave Junction for over ten years now, along with other cavers, some of whom are Steve Knutson, Bill Kenney, John Hodges, Larry McTeague and a host of others who have helped David on his digging project--even myself--but David has had this dream of connecting Cave Next Door to Oregon Caves for all these years and he's getting closer and closer. The pit is now 57' deep and straight down! :yikes: He gathered up a section of conduit and has placed that down in the hole, along with cutting up smaller sections of conduit and placing them in a horizontal fashion for protection, as there have been some problems during these ten years. :doh: Read this article http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dl ... /907120325 and enjoy learning more about what David Hodges has been dreaming of sharing with the people of Oregon...and of our nation. :cavingrocks:
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Re: Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Leitmotiv » Nov 9, 2009 2:41 am

I wish that website would have more history of the Cave Next Door and why David is doing his dig. I don't quite understand what he's trying to do. I always thought he was trying to reopen Cave Next Door because it had closed up somehow. But you seem to suggest that he's connecting both Cave Next Door and the nearby Oregon Caves monument.
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Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Ernie Coffman » Nov 9, 2009 3:59 pm

Matt,

In answer to your concern -
I wish that website would have more history of the Cave Next Door and why David is doing his dig. I don't quite understand what he's trying to do. I always thought he was trying to reopen Cave Next Door because it had closed up somehow. But you seem to suggest that he's connecting both Cave Next Door and the nearby Oregon Caves monument.
, I hope I haven't misled you. David has quite a website and he and his wife, Martha, work on it together. As far as why he's "doing his dig," I dare say because--IMHO, anyway--its something that cavers do. He never used to be a caver, until he started working at Oregon Caves. He was a miner! As far as CND being closed up, several cavers have been into it, taking pictures, etc., but as David indicates it closed up one winter, I believe it was, back in 1999 or 2000; thus, like a cave that we have an MOU with, down in California, we wanted to re-open it, for we hadn't really begun to see how far that cave went. :tonguecheek: In the beginning when I was working with him a few times, I thought he was working on CND, but he calls this dig "The Mistress." So after figuring things out a little, I believe he's trying to get back into CND, but through The Mistress." Hope that makes sense. :shrug: From the way CND went, I believe everyone that's worked on the project, feels that it might connect up with Oregon Caves, so that's my thought, too!

Even lava tubes, like you're used to over in Bend, folks continue to "push" just a little further to see if that little hole might open up into the "Carlsbad of the West." David has been working on his dream for a long time and to see what he's accomplished over the years--mostly by himself--is really a project that's above and beyond. :woohoo:
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Re: Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Leitmotiv » Nov 10, 2009 11:58 am

Okay, so how did Cave Next Door close up? I understand the original entrance was down along the river. If it closed up, perhaps getting into the cave may prove very difficult to do.

Also, I don't understand where his shaft is in relation to Cave Next Door. I bet there's a good reason for that, but it still confuses me. I'm sure he wants to keep the location a secret, but I'm guessing his shaft would have to be uphill from the original entrance, since he's trying to dig down to get to the cave. But how far did he go up hill?

Did the Cave Next Door appear in any issues of the NSS News?
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Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Ernie Coffman » Nov 10, 2009 10:58 pm

As to CND, the resurgence that was dug out to get to CND is under a landslide deposit. Very unstable! At the time of the collapse it was easy to see the collapse on the surface. The idea was to sink a large culvert vertically. There were other problems though, as a forest service road crossed the entrance a little higher up the hill and it was possible that disturbing the ground further could cause the road to collapse into the creek. That road no longer goes anywhere as the bridge upstream from CND got washed out the year before the CND was dug out, but no point in antagonizing the USFS.

As for his dig now, The Mistress was selected because the sink was where the excess water from upstream Panther Creek disappeared at flood. Needless to say, there are a lot of politics because of being so close to Oregon Caves; thus, at the present time, Dave has the blessing of his bosses there, but...it could always change.

If you're ever over that way, Dave could use help, that's for sure. Considering how far down he is, it truly has been a yeoman's job of getting there, and with the blessing of his wife, he'll continue his dream. :clap:
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Re: Cave Next Door to ...Oregon Caves

Postby Leitmotiv » Nov 11, 2009 12:23 am

I'm scheduled to go to Oregon Caves NM this weekend for a cleanup trip. I understand CND is just outside the monument at the north end. I don't think I'll have time to help him at all with his efforts, though it'd be interesting to see his efforts!
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