A few weeks ago I got to sit down with Patrick Austin and talk about some of the stories, folklore and places in Strange Rhode Island that I’ve found most fascinating. During the interviews, I shared some new stories and new details about places I’ve ventured, along with tips on how to get start as an explorer.
Please head over and check out WPRO’s CuRIous PODcasts
Currently posted are our talks about:
If there are any of our previous adventures you’d like to hear more about in future talks with Patrick, please let us know.
Posted in Historical, Media, Update & Information by Michael with no comments yet.
In October of 2014 a fellow OpenExplorer & Marine Biologist Asha De Vos did a TEDtalk and it has just been posted on the from page at TED.com. We’re very excited to see her work get the attention it deserves! Asha opens with mentioning the whales in Cape Cod bay, a place close to home for us.
You can see it at:
Here story at Nation Geographic:
And her Open Explorer expedition:
Posted in Marine, Update & Information, Wildlife by Michael with no comments yet.
Friday, Nov. 28th at 11am, I will be appearing on “The Good American” on WEMF (http://wemfradio.com/shows/the-good-american/) in Boston, Massachusetts for an interview.
I hope you’ll all join us as we share details about what we do and how it all started. I’ll be speaking about the recent projects and expeditions we’ve been working on, including our current work on the H.F. Payton and OpenROV!
Also check out our latest update on the progress of the ROV build and the H.F Payton Expedition at OpenExplorer!
Posted in Uncategorized, Update & Information by Michael with no comments yet.
Our weekend started off great when found what we believe might be the original Granite Monster. We met with my brother Steve and discussed the issue of the block being upside down. When we hit problems like this Steve always seems to be able to pull a solution out of his hat, and as usual he did. We have made plans to lift up the corner of the granite block using special tools suited for difficult jobs. With the block tightly seat on a bed of small rocks, difficult is an understatement. If ll goes well we’ll soon be able to see if we found the correct granite block.
We updated the rep from the Lighthouse museum on what we found. We also shared our recent 3D model we did of the blocks on the rocky shoreline. He liked the model so much he is interested in using them on a touch screen kiosk they have at the museum. We’re now shopping around for a tool that will host and display the models for the museum visitors interact with and enjoy.
Posted in Archaeological, Update & Information by Michael with no comments yet.
New England Explorers has applied for a grant through National Geographic’s program ‘Expedition Granted.’ If our expedition is granted we’ll put together a team of the most skilled explorers in the northeast and hunt down some of the most elusive locations lost to history, reveal new natural wonders and explore the stranger side of our early history.
Posted in Update & Information by Michael with 2 comments.
This cave is a rare find in southeastern New England and it has been ignored for over 40 years. Though it is far shorter than most I’ve traversed, I couldn’t wait to get back and follow the passage to its conclusion. I hadn’t seen much during my first visit but I could tell that it exceeded the few details of its map. I couldn’t stop thinking about how much more it might surpass the survey that had been done in the 60’s. Was the cave really 25 feet long? Could there be more caves nearby? How big was the upper chamber at end of the main passage. These were the question that haunted me all week. Anxious to answer them, I began preparing for a return visit. I got all my gear packed, batteries charged and made plans with Chad Grisly to hike to the cave on Saturday.
My plan was to not only crawl the entire cave, but also do a quick survey and a short ridge walk. Unfortunately as the week progressed the weather for Saturday began to look grim. Disappointed but undeterred, I quickly made plans with Penelope for Sunday. Due to a previous commitment for Sunday afternoon, I would have to make my visit earlier and shorter than I hoped.
Posted in Cave, Geological, Subterranean, Update & Information by admin with no comments yet.
The expedition into the Reynolds River passage will be this coming Saturday. We have 20 cavers including some who I’ve only known through their name and long history of contributions to caving in the Northeast. This should be a fun and exciting weekend.
Though Most of the passage was mapped in 1965, hundreds of feet beyond the 4-Way Junction remain to be mapped. Seasoned cavers Art Palmer and Chuck Porter will map from the 4-Way Junction towards the pool at the end of the cave, while another mapping team will start at the pool and map out to meet them.
The map to the left was surveyed in 1965, the year of my birth, and drawn four years later. The circles along the cave passage with numbers show the height of the passage at that location. As you can see, some parts of this passage are very small. On top of that, the shade part are filled with water. This is why we’ll need to wear wet-suits for this trip. Though it might look tough to a non-caver, I it will be much easier than some wet passages I’ve had to negotiate in the past. Hopefully we will be able to add several hundred of feet of passage to the map when we’re done.
There are some spectacular formations in the passage, and very few photos exist, so some of us will be spending time photographing the cave. Howe Caverns requests the right to use photos taken on this trip. Since my adventure camera was long overdue for an upgrade, I went out and purchased a 14 MP Fuji S2950 camera. I also purchased a Pelican 1200 watertight case. In an attempt to capture as much of the expedition on video, I fastened a universal camera mount to my helmet so I can attach my Kodak waterproof HD video camera to it. Hopefully with the headlamp and extra lighting I will be carrying will be enough for the video.
As I mentioned before, each of us will be donating $50 – $100 to the Schoharie Relief Fund. Due to the generosity of my friends and coworkers, so far it looks like I will be handing them a check for over $300. I again encourage those who can spare a few dollars to do the same. You can find where to send the donation at the Howes Cavern Relief Fund webpage.
We will be entering the passage aroung 9 am and hope to exit by 5 pm the latest. The entire expedition will be about 6-8 hours. After we exit, we’ll be eating a hearty meal in the Howes dining area. Shortly after eating I will be making the 4 hour trip home.
I’ll be tweeting and sending picture to the website when possible. Once I’m home though, I probably will fall into a deep coma like sleep until the next day.
Posted in Cave, Subterranean, Update & Information by admin with no comments yet.
This year is already off to a great start. Some of my fellow explorers and I just signed onto an expedition into a portion of Howes Cavern known as Reynolds River. The purpose of this trip is to not only further explore the cave system, but also raise money for those in the Schoharie that were devastated by hurricane Irene this past year.
This event was coordinated by The Northeastern Caver, The Boston Grotto and Howes Caverns. Each of us going on this expedition will be making a donation to the Schoharie Relief Fund to participate. I personally saw how the flooding affected the area and strongly encourage those out there who can spare a dollar to do the same.
This is a portion of the cave system that is rarely visited and has never been fully explored or mapped. Most of the passage was mapped back in 1965, but there are hundreds of feet beyond a 4-Way Junction that remain unmapped. There are also passages noted on the 1965 map that appear to have not been explored. We hope to not only explore the passages, but also document our findings through photographs and further map surveying.
We will be entering the cave system around 9am February 25th and hope to be out by 5pm. I will be sending information, tweets and updates as things develop. I hope to be able to share photos and videos of our experience afterward.
More to come very soon!
Posted in Cave, Subterranean, Update & Information by admin with no comments yet.
New England is a fantastic place for an outdoor explorer. Though it has been well explored for over 390 years, I continue to hear of exciting new discoveries made by fellow explorers. There also are many natural wonders and curious locations that had been found and then lost again, just waiting to be rediscovered.
In my over thirty years of exploring New England, I’ve found that the greatest adventures are made of eighty percent research and twenty percent of actually being out on the trail. While extensively researching the northeast, I managed to build an extensive library of books and journals going back as far as the 1700s, and interview with locals. Though I have also been fortunate to be assisted by, and had the pleasure to aid other New England explorers I’ve met over the years, this loosely banded network of explorers has lacked the attention it deserves.
12 years ago I began to shared online some of the stranger tales of the adventures and mis-adventures some of my fellow explorers and I have experienced. Some were amusing, scary and often just plain weird. These were the most entertaining of the stories my close friends frequently wanted to hear over and over. Though they were enjoyable to tell, they were not the most serious, engaging or exciting.
After some thought over the past year, I decided it was about time to start to share the more sober and exhilarating experiences we’ve had. That is why I decide to create this blog. Though it will begin as a place to share some stories with the arm chair explorers, I hope to also share some of the resources, leads and even some locations we’ve collected over the years.
I hope you enjoy the stories and look forward to hearing about your adventures while exploring New England.
Posted in Update & Information by admin with no comments yet.