New Cave Discovered Near Limestone Quarry

Glenwood Springs—A new cave containing possible prehistoric artifacts was recently discovered north of Glenwood Springs that falls within the proposed footprint of the limestone quarry expansion. It’s been nicknamed “Witches Pantry” and the little known, hard-to-access cave might indeed be cursed if the expansion plans are given the go-ahead by the Bureau of Land Management. That’s the assessment of the two men who found the cave last fall; avid Rifle caver Rob McFarland and Richard Rhinehart of Grand Junction.  Rhinehart recently submitted a detailed report to the BLM about the cave that contained loose bones of mammals that are now being examined by experts at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.  Using GPS mapping, Rhinehart and McFarland determined the cave, with a tight, vertical entrance and long, narrow crawlways would indeed be impacted by Rocky Mountain Resources’ expansion plans of the limestone quarry. Other experts have been to the cave since the discovery and more are planning a visit to gather more information and evidence including a paleontologist and a bat specialist to see if the caves are used for nesting. Rhinehart says the Colorado Cave Survey and other specialists hope to work closer with the BLM in the near future.

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