Trip Leader name: Jay P. Kennedy MD

Trip date: 07/11/2009
Project manager: Rick Hines
Trip purpose: Photography in Upstream Thunder area
Areas of Cave visited: Upstream Thunder
Trip participants: Rick Hines, Bill Pfantz, Matt Kuehnert, Tom Grant, Lori Schultz, Cyle Riggs
Entry Time: 1040
Exit Time: 1805
The trip report: The entrance shaft was rigged with a rappel line and a hauling line, which was used to lower the heavy photography gear to the base of the shaft. Two cavers used the cable/ladder and remainder rappelled. Set off up Thunder River, showing Cyle some of the notable landmarks. Near the entrance passage to Convention Hall we spent a couple hours photographing the impressive white formation array above the breakdown, using multi-flash and Rick’s high-end digital camera. We next travelled to the large formation “overlook” near Convention Hall for more multi-flash shots. Our attempts to find Convention Hall allowed us to see a lot of meandering streamway but we did not find the proper way. The stilling well placed by Bill Gee is in good shape. In the course of the trip we saw 7 cave fish with the largest being 35mm and smallest 20mm. A single dark-brown salamander was observed in a Thunder River pool, swimming (length 25mm). No bats were seen. No mishaps/injuries.

At the ladder the photo gear was rigged for hauling and brought up the shaft by hand-over-hand pulling through a Petzl mini-Traxion pulley/progress capture. All cavers out by 1805, silo locked by 1855. Six of us adjourned to Senor Peppers in Camdenton for dinner, then home.