I went caving today! I decided about two weeks ago (maybe less) that I should try it, and found the IU Caving Club and they were having a trip, so I signed up immediately. I did it to build up my outdoorsy resume, mostly – or, at least that’s the only reason I was brave enough to just do it on a whim by myself.
We went to Buckner cave, which is about 20 minutes from campus. It’s a dry condition cave, which I appreciated for my first time caving. It’s privately owned which is why it’s not totally closed like the DNR caves are. I’m glad there were only four of us because it made the journey into the depths of Mississippian Indiana go way faster.
I’m not sure how I feel about caving. When you first enter the cave, there’s a big room that you walk straight into – but then you have to crawl through this tiny opening into the crawlway to the rest of the rooms. The tightest spot was the first thing we had to traverse, and it was only about 10 feet long, but I almost panicked. If the whole trip was going to be like that, I was not going to be okay. But I held it in and tried to calm down, and then it was okay and most of the time we could roll or crawl or crouch through the first 700 feet. Then, I made sure the rest wasn’t going to be that panic-inducing and I soon felt comfortable underground.
It’s totally weird to think that when I go hiking down here I’m probably walking right over the top of caves. Okay, probably not probably, but they’re not that uncommon and you’d normally never notice. I think I would go caving again, in one with sweeter formations, but I definitely like being on top of the earth where there are colors and sounds. I couldn’t do more than three hours in a cave unless it was SUPER sweet. Today’s trip only took 1.5 hours. I’m definitely interested in caving and wish I had come out loving it, but there’s a certain level of comfort that I’m used to that I didn’t have there.
Pictures didn’t really turn out well down there with all the dust.
Sweet, sweet sunlight. Today was gorgeous!
Some other things:
1. Caves are really dirty
2. Baby cave salamanders are adorable
3. Tiny bats are tiny – I’m used to big brown bats, not little brown bats.
4. I hit my head a lot.
5. Geology is way crazier than I gave it credit for before
Then I made a trip to Bloomingfoods for more bananas and quinoa. I’ve never made quinoa, and it was good but not great. I’ll have to tweak my recipe. I fried tilapia instead of baking it, and it was really good. I should have left it longer so it got crispy, but I’ll know to next time. THEN I was really excited, because I was roasting chickpeas (I have 4 cans in my pantry and have since sophomore year…), but when I left the kitchen I got distracted by a blog and left them in probably an extra 45 minutes. I didn’t remember until the smoke alarm went off. HUGE can of beans wasted. At least they’re not in my pantry anymore!
Til next time!