On Destination Adventure, we’ve taken you to new heights. On this segment, we’re taking you to new lows here at Keyes Cave in Pendleton Co.
“Certainly here at Keyes Cave, the location of the entrance can be difficult,” Say Garrett Heydt, guide at NROCKS Outdoor Adventures. “So you know, that’s one of the first reasons you take someone along, especially a guide.”
Our NROCKS guides, Garrett and Nicole tell us there are no maps to these caves and some go down hundreds of feet.
“I would describe it as a mini labyrinth,” added Garrett. “There’s a couple of different hallways, but really, not knowing the next step, sometimes that’s exciting for most.”
Pendleton County alone has over 80 miles of caves. And locals are quite secretive about the location of these so-called, wild caves.
“We consider this wild caving, extremely natural there’s no man made objects,” explained Garrett. “People don’t really have an understanding of it so that’s what really is the appeal.”
But even wild caves have a few fails safes.
“The cool thing about this cave is, you might find yourself a little backwards and then you will see a white arrow and they always point you towards the exit,” exclaimed Garrett.
“So, we are about 50 yards into the cave and we are already starting to see formations,” asked Clay.
“You can see evidence on the wall here where the water has worn away the rock,” said Nicole Wyatt, guide at NROCKS Outdoor Adventures. “What we’re walking in now is where the water has previously worn it away and made the cave in the first place.”
With the water came sea life! And proof of that remains today in the fossils.
“There’s a lot of different creatures that can be seen up here,” added Nicole. “A lot of these are just oysters like these guys up here. You can see these are the shells and these are what was left behind.”
“And for those looking for a more extreme adventure while caving, we have these unique tight squeezes where you have a low ceiling and you are literally crawling hand over hand on your belly out into an opening,” Clay stated.
And, we found another unexpected find, a geocache.
“This is a cave log, I guess you could call it,” Garrett said. “People who come here to enjoy Keyes Cave have the opportunity to write a little note and make it known when you were here.”
“Well, we’re at the end of our journey,” said Clay. “We came in right down there, but Garrett, our guide, tells us we’re heading out this one.”
“After spending almost two hours underground, I’ve finally seen the light of day. I’m Clay Abney, remember to get outside, or underground, and make adventure part of your next destination.