Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Vacation recap, day four, part two

Seriously, I am almost done with vacation recap, are you relieved?

Let me start off by saying that being out of shape, then going on a hike, then going to a cave where you have to climb 896 STEEP stairs right after the hike was NOT our best plan!

I thought about half way into that cave that they were going to have to get a stretcher and carry me out. My legs got that over tired feeling, you know the one, where they are kinda shaky and feel like jello. Yeah. I thought I was a goner for sure, but somehow I managed to make it all the way to the end, then all the way back out of that dang cave, and if I never go back, that is just fine with me!

I remember this cave being more exciting than it was. Maybe it was because I didn't have to climb a mountain first like you do to see Timp cave, or maybe it was because to a child all things are cool, Maybe it was because we went to Leman caves last year and not only did you not have to hike to it, but it was relatively flat, and very colorful compared to Minnetonka. It was sadly disappointing and totally NOT worth all the freakin stairs I had to climb!

Anyway, after our hike, we drove about 45 minutes to Minnetonka cave. We got there about 20 minutes before the tour started so we wandered around a little and took some pictures. Then came the moment of truth, the start of the tour, no food or water please.

We stood at the entrance of the cave providing a buffet of yumminess for the hoard of mosquitoes flocking about us while the tour dude rambled on about cave history and etiquette, then they opened the bat doors and in we went. Right off the bat you are faced with a stair case descending down down down into the pits of he.... erm, the cave.

Watch your head, there's a low ceiling, and watch your step, the steps are uneven stone, covered in mud, and they are slippery! This is one set of stairs, which isn't so bad in the beginning when you are going DOWN them,but at the end when you have to climb back up them and you are half dead, they are a killer!

I'm not saying there was nothing redeeming about this cave, there were some cool things to see.

I'm just thinking all of this would have been much more enjoyable if there were escalators....just sayin'.

This was cool though. Arnell is the name of the man who found the cave in 1907, so Nada must be some kind of relation. See that date? 7-4-38! How neat is that?

Ah finally, a light at the end of the tunnel, or should I say, the never ending staircase? And look, there is a studly man thing standing there patiently waiting for my gasping flabby butt to make it to the top. Why the heck isn't he BEHIND me shoving my flabby butt up the stairs? That's the question!

Can I also say that the walkway to the cave is a little freaky? It's a board walkway that is suspended out over the open canyon and attached to the cliff side with bolts. There is a space between the boards and you can see down. Yikes. But the scenery is beautiful if you can stop gasping for air long enough to appreciate it. And if you can stop swinging your arms wildly, trying to ward off the dive bombing mosquitoes of death long enough to take a picture, (I seriously believe if you stand in one spot for more than 30 seconds the mosquitoes will suck you dry, I was feeling slightly anemic by the time we made it back to the car, and looked like a victim of the pox).

Here is another Limber pine, so called because they are....well...limber. Their flexible roots can twist and wind down through the rocks until it gets to enough soil to nourish the tree. This one looks like it is growing straight out of the rock face.

Hope you enjoyed the tour of Minnetonka cave. Be grateful you can just sit on your butt and look at pictures. I had to climb 896 stairs to bring you this blog entry!


Shanae said...

You are hilarious! I'm sure your account is much better than the actual cave LOL