Expedition to Mendes Cave and Mapp's Cave

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Expedition to Mendes Cave on 21 January 2009

I discovered this cave in 1997 while exploring the area around Paragon and I documented it with photographs at that time
I was happy to show it to Professor Hans Machel (a highly respected geologist) and Richard Goddard (a dedicated environmentalist)
This cave has a hole in the roof through which cows and sheep have fallen to their death over the years.... carcass of a cow is shown below

Mendes Cave also features beautiful flowstone formations.... Hans Machel examining the flowstones below

It was once a sea cave and according to Hans, the rocks grind upwards in the surf and carve out a circular cavity in the roof

Richard Goddard plays Cannibal Cave Character with bones of dead Creatures

I document Professor Hans Machel climbing out of Mendes Cave.... as he needs these photos for his forthcoming book on Barbados Caves - the link between Barbados Building Boom and Crumble Cake Catastrophe

Expedition to Mapp's Cave on 17 January 2009

The expedition started from the site of the Mapp's College in St. Philip.... after a short trek through the bush, we reached the cave
Professor Hans Machel, an expert in geology and caves has long been fascinated with the caves of Barbados...... and so his good friend Richard Goddard has been showing him all the caves during his brief visit... I am along to photograph and take the GPS co-ordinates of the various caves, for future documentation and this will hopefully lead to the preservation of our natural habitat..... as we are very much against the wanton destruction of our environment by greedy, self-serving human beings.

As we enter the awesome cave there is that element of mystery... how far does it go ? ..... like with all caves rumours abound, and tall tales are told..... we have been led to believe it goes all the way to the sea and ancient pirates used it for transporting and hiding their loot..... it sounds like a good theme for a movie, but could it really be TRUE ????

Inside the darkness, I depend on the infrared beam to autofocus the camera as I fire off a couple of flash shots hoping for good results

As with most caves... bats are everywhere... and I get this cool photos as we exit to the outside

In the sink hole, we examine the various rock surfaces.... and Hans points us to the remains of a wasps nest.... and shows us the structure adhered to the rock surface is actually made with the spit of these insects

I discover an easier way to get out of the sink hole and we soon emerge into the daylight ..... ready to go explore another cave.... the tall tales were only a myth (as they usually are)... but we had fun and it was a worthwile way to spend an afternoon.

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copyright 2009 Stephen E. Mendes, Barbados.