Topless Dome is a 396 foot tall dome with a water fall coming down the center of it. This is the 2nd video about the project where Rachel Saker finished leading to the top of it and we rappelled next to the water fall. We were in the cave for 3 days, 2 nights for a total of 62 hours to complete this project.
Rachel lead from Horsetooth pit up through Mushroom Forest and gets us to the top where we found the original anchor from 44 years ago including the original note in a cricket chewed zip lock bag. We then rappelled the entire dome making it the longest continuous rappel I have ever done.
Project leader: Rachel Saker https://www.instagram.com/petzlprincess
Photo Credit: Ethan Reuter https://www.instagram.com/ethan_reuter_photography
Video Credit: Derek Bristol https://youtu.be/OXVyEgixpWU
https://www.instagram.com/kmichael500/ and Mark Wingard joined us in this episode.
Behind the Scenes
Since we didn't get to finish the project the previous time I went out to TAG, a few months later when Rachel said she was only 2 days from the top I went back out there and belayed her over the finish line. This episode shows the effort it took to get to her high point and get to the top of Topless Dome. I enjoyed Big Walling as a sport many years before highlining so I loved the idea of a multi day trip under ground. I saw the sun less during the time I was there than I saw dark since after 62 hours in a cave, we exited at night. It's amazing the geography under the earth but also the lack of color, specifically green. When I came back to the surface, it really amazed me how much color and sounds there were from all the life.
After Posting Thoughts
I'm so happy to see the video was popular and it got the attention it deserved. This was an amazing project Rachel Saker did on and off for 2 years. Over 250k views in 3 months is encouraging to me to make more caving content even if not everyone who watch is a caver. Cross pollinating the different sports is one of my favorite things to do on this channel and this encompassed big walling and caving into one. I walked away with so many new tools I was able to use on other projects and will also be able to share on HowNOT2.
See the other two videos about the project
The first episode's blog has a photo collage of amazing photos from the project!