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2011 Trip Report - DE Rendezvous - Tapiado Mud Caves

Tapiado Mud Caves!

Written by Leaders Alan & Claudia Heller

A handful of Desert Explorers bravely became Desert Spelunkers on the last  day of the recent Rendezvous in Anza Borrego. The drive to Tapiado Arroyo took  the group through the beautiful Blair Valley, past Agua Caliente and onto a dirt  road. Shortly past the road to Palm Spring, they came upon an unusual sight. On  a low hill stood a street sign which read: “Hollywood Blvd. and Vine Street.”  Climbing up to investigate, another surprise awaited. There a geocache was  discovered and investigated. After adding a few of their own items, it was  carefully replaced.

Some 3.5 miles from the base of the arroyo the group reached the Tapiado Mud  Caves. Flashlights in hand, they negotiated through three caves including the  Big Mud Cave, Carey’s Big Mud Cave and Chasm Cave. During their spelunking  adventure the group climbed through narrow passageways, found rooms with  skylights, negotiated through slot canyons, photographed arches and clamored  over boulders. In one cave, they gathered below a shaft of sun which broke  through a skylight , listening intently as leader Alan Heller relayed the story  of the Mole People who once lived beneath the earth and held sacrifices in just  such a room.

Tired from their spelunking expedition, the group settled down in the shade  for lunch. It was a fun and educational trip, especially enjoyed by the two  young girls along, Hanna and Emily.

Trip leaders: Alan and Claudia Heller. Participants: Rebecca, Leonard and  Hannah Friedman; Ted and Joan Berger; Mike and Katie and Emily Berger, and  Fredric Raab.

This report was prepared by Alan and Claudia Heller. We have more photos, if  desired.