As the name implies, Monster Cavern is an immense room deep in West Virginia's longest cave system: Friars Hole. Discovered in 1977 by University students from Canada, it is 450ft in diameter and over 250ft tall. Oh, and it has a 105ft waterfall dropping in from the side wall. It has never been photographed in its entirety. Mainly because in the mid-1980s the closest entrance to the room was closed by the landowner. Now a trip to Monster Cavern is a minimum 14hr trip covering nearly 7 miles of cave, 2 of which is crawling.
Our trip began with a gorgeous rappel into the 98ft deep Crookshank Pit Entrance at 10am. 4hrs and a lot of crawling later we pushed through the Grim Crawl. Its 180ft long, 7 to 9 INCHES high, and has an inch or two of moving water in it. Then one strolls through big walking passage before emerging into Monster Cavern. It is an amazing trip.We exited around 3am the following morning, having been underground for 17hrs and 37mins. We were the first to shoot the entire room.
Enjoy the photos....
What ones first view is of Monster Cavern. Looking up the breakdown into the room itself. The ceiling soars over 250ft. Room lit with two Number 50 flashbulbs.
What it feels like to be in Monster.
Way out there in the distance is Elliot on rope at the TOP of Monster Falls (103ft). We stood up on the breakdown mountain above the fog banks in the valley below. Lit with two number 50 bulbs.
A happy group before packing up. From (l-r): myself, Stephanie Petri, Elliot Guerra-Blackmer, and Andrew Mengele.