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Washington Caves ( The Big Four Ice Caves )

After I published my "Caving" post , about my visit of the Ape Caves near Mt St Helen one of the readers made a very "knowledgeable " comment: " It's not "caving ". It's called spelunking ". According to Wiki:
Caving — also known as spelunking, when referring to amateurs without the proper knowledge, or training — is the recreational sport of exploring caves. In contrast, speleology is the scientific study of caves and the cave environment

Whatever you call it: caving,spelunking or speleology - it's a lot of fun and our state is a great place to experience it, whether you are doing it for physical exercise,sense of exploration and curiosity or pure enjoyment.

What made me go back to my "Caving" post, was the increasing "fuzz" about grand opening for the Ice Caves Trail Bridge. The bridge ( the old one was washed out by floods in 2006 )accesses one of the most popular trails on the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. According to the WTA blog :
This trail is among the most popular day hikes in the entire state, the Big Four Ice Caves can see up to 50,000 visitors a year... and the star of the show- the ice caves, at the foot of Big Four Mountain.

Besides the caves and impressive views of Big Four Mountain, another great feature of the trail , it's been made accessible for people in wheelchairs.I am very happy to know,that trails like that open the great outdoors to people in wheelchairs and give them a chance to pursue their passion.

I had a blast exploring the Ape Caves last year, and when I found out about the Big Four Ice Caves , I was really psyched to check it out.But at the end of the WTA post I read:
Note: The Big Four Ice Caves are extremely dangerous to approach, enter or climb on. Tons of unstable ice may come crashing down at any moment. Please exercise extreme caution in this area.

My guess is ,though the caves are highly dangerous to enter, you can still do it. Doesn't look like it stopped these people.

If you prefer to be on the safe side,the caves can be viewed from an outlook, a short walk from the base of Big Four Mountain.


Kim D Luper said...

These are my photos maybe early 90's of my friends Doug & Alisa. After we left the cave a big block of ice came crashing down with a very loud thunder.


ExtraHyperActive said...

Hey Kim, hope you don't mind me "borrowing" those pics. One of my readers forwarded them to me.

I would love to find out more about the Oregon Grotto and your exploration of NW caves.

Believe it or nor "Ice cave" post gets the most search results on my blog.
Shoot me an email if you guys would like to post more articles on the blog. People re really interested !