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Hike to Leviathan Cave
August 24, 1996

On Saturday August 24, 1996 (or Sunday Aug. 25), the Area 51 Research Center will be sponsoring a free public hike to Leviathan Cave, a mountaintop cavern system about 15 miles north of Rachel, Nevada. (Rachel is about a 2-1/2 hour drive north of Las Vegas.) The hike will be long and strenuous -- at least 4 hours to get from base level to the entrance of the cave. Although anyone is welcome to attempt it, this is not a hike for most casual tourists.

Leviathan Cave is a real cave, complete with stalactites and stalagmites -- Do you remember which is which? -- and maybe a few BATS! The cave system is reportedly about 1/4 mile long. The cave entrance is located near the top of Meeker Peak in the Worthington Range. We will climb from 6200 feet to 7900 feet over very rough terrain. The hike will also require some minor rock climbing, nothing too dangerous, but if your afraid of heights you might be turned off by the cave's entrance, which involves a 15 foot vertical drop. The rest of the cave system is fairly level.

Even if you do not make it to the cave, there should be a fine view of the surrounding area. A view of peripheral sections of Area 51 is possible, but you won't see the base itself.

We tried this hike last year but took some wrong turns and never reached the cave. Now we have collected more reports from others and are reasonably sure we know where we are going. Nonetheless, this should be considered an exploratory hike, since none of us have been to the cave before. Part of our problem on the previous hike is that rogue members of the group went in different directions. This year, everyone is expected to stick with the group.

This hike is the equivalent of three or four Tikaboo Peaks. You must be in good physical condition if you expect to make it to the cave. Otherwise, you'll probably drop by the wayside. (That's okay, if you don't mind th humiliation.) You'll need good hiking shoes, flashlights and full sun protection; tennis shoes will not cut it. The temperature at this elevation is relatively mild -- no higher than the 90s -- but the sun will be intense. If you choose to attend we will provide more info on gear.

Maps: USGS 7.5 minute Meeker Peak (Nevada) quadrangle at (UTM) 4187825mN by 622675mE in Zone 11.

The trailhead is about 15 miles north the Area 51 Research Center, so we will spend Friday night at the center and carpool to the hiking area at the crack o' dawn. As always, the Area 51 Research Center is not responsible for any physical or mental injuries you might incur on this expedition.

The Aug. 24 date happens to coincide with an Area 51 "rave" party planned for Rachel the evening. We have nothing to do with that commercial event, but we want to be there to observe and heckle.

Our Aug. 24 date (Saturday) might be changed to Aug. 25 (Sunday) if enough of the participants prefer Sunday. (If people from L.A. have to work on Friday, it could be tough getting up here in time for the hike early on Saturday. On the other hand, a Sunday hike would give less time for recovery before Monday morning.) If we went on Aug. 25, we could still heckle the rave party the night before.

In any case, you must R.S.V.P. if you want to come because our plans our subject to change. We do not expect many people, but many of the Groom Lake Interceptors will the there. For information and reservations contact Jim Bakos at Please provide you phone number and indicate your date preference. (If, as the day of the hike approaches, you get no response from the email address, you can call the Research Center at 702-729-2648.)

[an error occurred while processing this directive] [ Area 51 ] [an error occurred while processing this directive] Created: 7/26/96, 7/29/96, 8/13/96 dpk