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Thread: Desert hiking/Limestone cave pt. 1

  1. #1

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    Desert hiking/Limestone cave pt. 1

    A friend and I went camping for a night and looking at the limestone caves the next morning in Carlsbad, New Mexico. New Mexico is just like old Mexico....its a big desert, and no one speaks English . Right near the border, Texas is green and generally nice, but as soon as you cross into NM, everything is brown and dead.





    I thought this plant was pretty gross looking....Euphorbia?


    We tried to get to that hill, but there was a barbed wire fence in the way. We slipped through, but didn't want to get shot for trespassing.












    Unlike most of the limestone caves around, these caves were formed by sulfuric acid

    Natural entrance to the caverns


    Looking up from said entrance






    Formation in some water




    I fully extended my tripod (5' or so) with my camera attached, and stuck it in some little hole to get this pic:


    Continued in pt. 2
    Z polski y dumny
    Prayer - how to do nothing and still think you're helping.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5F5aCUNE4Z8
    ^^^Newest vid

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    Very cool photos (and part 2 too). Where did the sulfuric acid come from that made the caves? I don't believe it. By the way, I didn't know banned camp was in NM. It doesn't seem like a bad deal.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    herenorthere's Avatar
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    ... and here's the answer - http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF...2n2-Jagnow.pdf - for the geologically curious. I had no idea.
    Bruce in CT

    Madness is something rare in individuals but in groups, parties, peoples, ages it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

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    Quote Originally Posted by herenorthere View Post
    sulfuric acid
    mmmmmm, i can't believe it's not sulfuric acid, the tasty acidic solution that'll dissolve organic tissue with just half the calories!

    They were formed by H2S (hydrogen sulfide) gas rising from below, where reservoirs of oil give off sulfurous fumes. This gas mixes with ground water and forms H2SO4 (sulfuric acid). The acid then dissolves the limestone from below, rather than from above by acidic water percolating from the surface.
    Finer in 09'er

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