LITTLE BRUSH CREEK CAVE

February 01, 2016


Little Brush Creek cave, Utah
Little Brush Creek cave is located in the Ashley National Forest in eastern Utah near Dinosaur National Monument. Little Brush Creek Cave has been publicly mapped for around 5.9 miles but additional survey has rendered passage that has extended this cave to 7 miles making this cave the longest cave in Utah.
Little Brush creek Cave, Utah
This cave has a short visitation span of only a few month in the winter due to the massive amount of water that this system takes from Little Brush creek.  The river loses right into the cave and nobody has found where the water goes as of yet.
Pothole canyon passage in Little Brush Creek Cave, Utah
A winter visit into this cave is the best time so you are not caught in a flash flood and so you can manipulate around the frozen potholes that are full of water.
Little Brush creek Cave, Utah
The first 200ft of passage is massive borehole which is apart of the entrance room.  There is a dome room to the left which is around 40ft high and 30-40ft long.
Little Brush Cave, Utah
Laura and I encountered massive rotting logs and debris have been keyed in from previous floods create obstacles for a continued pursuit into the cave.  Small tiered climb downs, 3ft. to around 6ft., with air sucking into the cave, tell an obvious tale that this cave holds an extensive labyrinth of passage and watercourse charter.
Crawl passage with logs keyed in, Little Brush Creek cave, Utah
There are some restrictive passages where logs turn a caver into an acrobatic contortionist, but with a little thought, they are straightforward to breach. Continuing down the cave the room get slightly bigger with less stoop walking and more walking until you get to the pothole canyon passage.
Pothole Canyon Passage, Little Brush Creek, Utah
We found this to be interesting as the limestone was a strong reinforced strata with conglomerate stone at its contact and in the ceiling.  It was rather gray light pale blue gray in color with some piss yellow sprinkled in. I made it almost a mile and decided to turn around as daylight was burning on the topside and I wanted to check on Laura and check on a few out side passages.  
Limestone and quartzite in a drip mosaic in Little Brush creek cave, Utah.
The cave was a balmy 35-40 degrees as it was 15 degrees outside which made this feel quite warm as long as you kept moving.
Ice Formations Little Brush Creek Cave, Utah
After exiting the main corridor I found a side passage that was blowing out to the exit which was interesting to feel and know that a possible through trip can be made in this cave. back out in the Midwest the caves where usually blowing out or sucking in depending on the season but this cave system, as a whole, was doing both. We noticed the ice hexagonal ice crystal on the other entrance which were beautiful!
Ice Crystals in Little Brush cave, Utah
We found this crystallization to be quite interesting because of how the prisms should shimmer in all different direction making these a little challenge to photo.
Ice Crystals in Little Brush Cave, Utah
Ice Crystals in Little Brush Cave, Utah
I was able to find a crack that was bolted and appeared to be around 30-40 feet down but unfortunately I did not have my vertical gear with me so I was not able to get down there.
Crack pit in Little Brush Creek Cave, Utah
Toothbrush cave was right next door which is a walking entrance with a breakdown slide to a 40ft pit that drops into walking passage for a couple hundred feet.  We are going to bring my vertical gear next time for that one.
Little Brush Cave, Utah

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