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Ascent of Florida Cavern Limestone Bluff on 2016-02-13

Climber: William Musser

Others in Party:Karen Musser
Date:Saturday, February 13, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Florida Cavern Limestone Bluff
    Location:USA-Florida
    Elevation:140 ft / 42 m

Ascent Trip Report

We really enjoyed this part of the campground and state park. We parked in the parking lot and purchased tickets. The tour takes you about 50 feet below ground and you meander around a decent cave system, certainly the best in FL with lots of stalactite, stalagmite, and columns and light shows. Coming out of the tour you enter the park's short but very nice looped trail system that allows you to explore this very unique terrain where the ancient sea bottom left a couple of odd porous limestone bluffs along the Carter's Mill Run and the Chipola River. Many cave entrances can be seen and varying foliage from the limestone bluffs down to the deep swamps. In places, the bluffs are a good 20 to 30 feet above the swamps which is odd being on rock overlooking a cypress-gum swamp in FL.

The highest point in the exposed rock mass that the cavern meanders through is elevation 140 and is bisected by a very nice trial called the beech-magnolia trail. We ended up doing the trail twice.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:495 ft / 150 m
    Total Elevation Loss:430 ft / 130 m
    Round-Trip Distance:3.1 mi / 5 km
    Grade/Class:1
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Bushwhack
    Gear Used:
Guide
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:220 ft / 67 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 65 ft / 20 m; Extra: 155 ft / 47m
    Loss on way in:155 ft / 47 m
    Distance:1.2 mi / 1.9 km
    Route:Visitor Center to cave tour to bluff trail
    Start Trailhead:Swamp by Visitor Center  75 ft / 22 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:275 ft / 83 m
    Gain on way out:275 ft / 83 m
    Distance:1.9 mi / 3.1 km
    Route:bluff trail to magnolia-beech trail to other nearb
Ascent Part of Trip: FL Caverns

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDateGain
1Bat Bluff2016-02-12 a47 ft / 14 m
1Florida Caverns State Park High Point2016-02-13 a505 ft / 154 m
2Florida Cavern Limestone Bluff2016-02-13 b495 ft / 151 m
3Geneva County High Point2016-02-13 c68 ft / 21 m
Total Trip Gain: 1115 ft / 340 m    Total Trip Loss: 856 ft / 261 m



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