In August 2010 the OCDA was invited to the New Mertz Cave system for a possible connection attempt with the nearby Crevice Cave system. This system is located in Perry County, MO. The project consisted of seventeen cavers who are listed below, along with their grotto affiliations: Paul Hauck (LEG/SEMO), Richard Young (LEG/SEMO), Don Bittle (LEG/SEMO), Edmund Tucker (LEG/SEMO/NNG), Rob “Bobcat” Kavaliauskas (SEMO), Eric Hooper (SEMO), Ralph Sawyer (NNG), Jennifer Thompson (MVG/SEMO), Joe Nicolussi (MSM), Kristin Nicolussi (MSM), Tyler Allen (MSM), Kiley Bush (MSM), Michael Bradford (MSM), Laura Sisken (MSM), Bob Koch (Ozark Cave Diving Alliance-OCDA), Dirk Bennett (OCDA), Shannon Wallace (OCDA). We would also like to thank Chad McCain (SEMO/LEG), Ted Mueller (LEG), and the legendary Joe Walsh (MVG) for their help hauling gear to the entrance.



After hiking for several hours into the cave the sump areas were reached. The zero visibility conditions required OCDA divers to search for connections by feel alone, which were unsuccessful due to pinch downs in the bedding plane. Edmund and Eric also explored the dome areas above the Big Room area for a possible opening to the surface.Their trip compilation report can be found here. What a memorial trip with this great group of cavers!