Shaun Larson, Erik Major, Jim Pisarowicz, Cindy Sperling
Duration of Trip:
New Cave Surveyed:
One of the major discoveries of 1987 was the Dreamland area in the northeast section of Wind Cave. This area yielded almost 3/4 of a mile of new passages. Unfortunately, the original route into this area involves some incredible squeezes and climbs. In one of these tight spots, a caver got himself stuck for 45 minutes. Needless to say, everyone hoped that a short cut could be discovered into Dreamland.
Upon plotting up the new Dreamland passages it was found that several areas of Dreamland were relatively close to known cave in the area known as the Attic. A previous survey trip to the Attic indicated a passage that was heading right for a portion of Dreamland. Seeing that the Attic is relatively close to the tour trail our crew headed into Wind Cave after work to push to survey this lead into Dreamland.
The trip was relatively easy and straightforward. Within half an hour of entering the cave we were surveying in the lead off the Attic. To begin with the passages were fairly large (7-15 feet wide) and dipping down. Only one obstacle was encountered...an eight inch high tight crawl. Because this was Cindy's first cave trip, she was somewhat apprehensive about that squeeze. Shaun provided motivation by quickly sliding through the hole and declaring that "any wimp" could make it through. We all quickly followed into the small room just beyond the squeeze. We named it Cindy's Cell because Cindy said that she felt like she was trapped in a jail cell after going through the squeeze.
From Cindy's Cell the cave zigzagged back and forth and went into a tight fissure. Erik crawled ahead and proclaimed that he had discovered a Dreamland survey marker. We had our shortcut!
Report by: Jim Pisarowicz