November 20, 2010

Bennett Springs State Park small cave passage eaten away by a river course
Bennett Springs is in a central eastern section  of Missouri that is home to a massive and relatively unknown cave system that resurges hundreds of cubic feet of water each minutes from the depths below.  This Spring is open to cavern diving in the winter months and a major restriction stops most people from pushing through the pressure of water at this restriction.  My Dive Buddy and I enter the clear water with good visibility and enter the impressive cave just 50-60 from the shoreline. The bottom slopped down 30-45 degrees and there must have been over a hundred trout hanging out near the lip of the cave.  It was really interesting to go past them as we descended down into the main restriction.  We descend down and it gets darker and darker until we can just barely see the entrance.  The ground was smooth stones that have been tumbled and what we say next was something I was not expecting.

In Bennett Springs underwater Passage
 We get to the restriction and the water pressure was so great we could no longer move!  It was pushing our bubbles behind us and it was even wedging us into the sides of the passage.  WOW that is impressive waterflow.  Furthermore, the water pressure was tossing smooth pebbles from the restriction up to where we were!! I attempted to reach and grab the restriction to push my way through without any success. We made another attempt on our second dive without success but we had a blast going into the cave system.  from what I understand people have gone past this restriction and the cave continues with more restrictions but plenty more is yet to be discovered here in this cave system in Missouri.
The Following day I went on a day hike to the dry cave that a river cut through which was interesting to see as well.  it was a bit of a hike to get there but I had enjoyed the hike and highly recommend going there.

Lots of Trout at the Entrance of Bennett Springs.

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