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Odey's Pit: Before and After

by Charles Danforth (posted March 5, 2004)

Sometime in the winter/spring of 2003, several large boulders fell from the lip of Odey's Pit (Cassell Cave) in Pocahontas County, WV. Using serendipitous before and after photos, we can determine exactly which rocks fell. The photos actually line up remarkably well and I've labelled a few key rocks in the two pictures for comparison purposes.

before collapse after collapse

Clearly, rocks A, B and C have fallen while E and F remain aboveground. The fluted rock D may well be the same one seen in a slighly different position in the after photo; the sizes and colors are similar. I suspect that the shaley ledge under B collapsed taking the primary rocks with it. It's hard to tell, but the ledge under B is quite prominent in the before picture, but appears abreviated (and suspiciously moss-free) in the after photo. The upstream rocks are still in position (E and F and those above them) implying that most of the (conciderable) quantity of rock in the pit came from inside the pit; possibly the shaley ledge.

Another view of the three primary rocks (A, B, C) can be had in this photo by Rafi Reyes. It also gives you a nice sense of scale! Indy is standing firmly on A and in front of C. I've crossed over this way many times. Yikes!

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