Panther Rocks and Caves, is probably the biggest, best cave area we visit to cave in. It's also a great area for climbing, as people come from surrounding states to climb and rappel there. It's a well known rock area near state game lands #47 near President Pa.
We always have a great trip to Panther Caves. There are over 30 caves of varying ability for everybody to enjoy. There are several real big, walk-in caves. There are caves with rappels inside. Some are crawl ways. There are lots of caves for everybody. I myself don't like the real tight stuff. Some are dry and all walking and some are wet and muddy. The rock area is quite pretty. There are many, many spots to climb outside the caves.
The "President Pa. Mall"
Sunday Sept 25th
We did a big cave trip to Panther Rocks in President Pa. This is one of the bigger large rock areas in Western Pa. There are many large cliffs, boulders, and caves at this location.
This was a trip with the Outdoors Club from the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford Pa.
We left the collage with two vans of collage kids and crew, and John's van filled with Allegheny Outdoor Adventure group members. Then we met up with Karen and Addie in Warren, and headed to President. At President we just missed Veronica.
We got to the rocks and divided the gear to be hauled down to the staging area, and MAN did we have the gear. I can say this was the best equipped trip we have done so far. We seemed to have had extra everything! There was a very large (70 passenger) school bus in the parking lot we later discovered was a boy scout troop rappelling at the rock area.
John (me), Artie, Dave R, Mary, Karen and Amanda headed to Hell Cave to rig it with ropes and lights for the rest of the group. We planned to put everybody through Hell, to begin the day!
Hell is a "through trip", where you enter at the top of the hill and exit below the rock area.
Meanwhile Mick and crew rigged a rappelling line near Hell and our lunch spot/fire ring.
We put most of the group through Hell, and then had lunch. Again, we had extra everything!
After lunch, Mick and Zach went back to running, now a rappelling line and a climbing station, while I led a group through the main crevice or hallway, exploring smaller caves off to each side.
We did re-find the infamous pre-historic fish fossil, although I think it shrunk substantially from what I remember it once was!
We had a major break through when Artie took the lead in what I believed to be a smaller, less significant cave and he wowed us by linking it UNDER the main hallway-crevice and out to the front rock wall, exiting through the cave "Nothing In Here". Others, went into "Nothing In Here", and met up with Artie and Shawn. Among those were Mary, Addie, Christopher, Travis, and others I don't remember.
After coming out of "Nothing In Here" we all wandered over to the "Corkscrew" cave and Addie went into the entrance for a pic. Then we met up with Mick now working a "free rappel" line that some went down.
As always happens at this place, we ran out of time WAY before we ran out of caves. We only saw about 5 of the 34 caves there! We MUST do this trip as a weekend camp-out, so we have enough time to sample everything there is here! We never even went to the infamous "Ice Cave" due to time restraints.
As it was, even though we rushed the whole day, we didn't get back to the collage until 8:30. Poor Mary still had an hour ride home!
Here are some unorganized pic's:
A very enthusiastic Addie at the start of the trip
Still smiling being lowered into Hell!
Shawn and Artie below
Our lunch fire pit
Waiting for lunch
Amanda excited after a tight squeeze
A couple "cave babes"
Addie loves to climb!
Mary loves to crawl!
Now THAT is tight
Roots on cave ceiling
SPIDERS! On cave ceiling!
"Newer" old graffiti
Addie seems to love the caves!
Shawn having fun
Girl in passage
Outside "Nothing In Here" cave
Christopher in the entrance to "Nothing In Here"
Artie in REAL TIGHT passage
Mary in Nothing In Here
Travis in lower passage
Is he stuck?
Addie, what a great spirit
....... a secret no more!
Addie in the Corkscrew Cave
Girl climbing with Zach
Mary on narrow rock bridge, note how well she matches the surroundings
Zach and Shawn(?)
Mick rigging Mary
Mary over the edge on the free rappel
Addie about to hook up
Addie over the edge
Karen hooking in
Karen over the edge
And from Artie's Camera:
The group at the staging area
Rigging the ropes for "Hell Cave"
John and Dave outside Hell
Mary waiting to enter Hell
Mick rigging rapell line
John in Hell
Mick lowering rappeler
climbing station run by Zach
The hike out
Mick up top
Hike back to cars
The staging area, placing tarps
Saturday Nov 7th 2004
This was a trip with eight of us, going to Panther Rocks in President Pa. We took a long time to get there, and we only had time to go into three caves. While some of us made a "hot-dog lunch" the others set up a climbing/rappelling line on a short rock face.
We went into "Hell Cave", then the "Slide-in Cave" and then the "Ice Cave". We passed several others, but did not enter them. We took pic of the entrance of the "Corkscrew Cave", but left that for another day.
Savannah about to drop down
Caver coming into Cave. Note the light from the opening in the background
John lowers Jamie
Savannah looking up
Mick! Our fearless leader!
Mick working climbing/rappel line
Outside "Slide-In Cave"
"Don't go in there" ... So much for rules!
John looking out of Ice Cave
Long way down
More photos from pervious trips:
The "Corkscrew" Cave (Spider Cave)
The infamous "Spider Room at the bottom of the Corkscrew Cave
Upper entrance to Hell
Looking down from the rocks into a crevice
Tree roots on the ceiling
Pre-historic fish fossil
Close up of fish
These were seen in late April
Entering a small tight crawl cave
A bat on a cave wall
Mike coming out small tight cave
This is "Nothing In Here"
Small waterfall on rocks
Please visit the cave gear page, and fully read about what to bring on our cave trips: