Go prepared! - Caving Checklist
A Cryptid Habitat ?
Geology: Just 20,000 years ago lava flowed into the Hat Creek area. The top crust hardened as the lava continued to flow underground. Eventually the lava flow slowed and drained out of these now formed lava tubes. The shape resembles man made subway tunnels thus the name. Subway cave is the largest accessible cave that has been located in the Hat Creek area.
Legend: The Atsugewi Indians lived in the area. They are also referred to as the Hat Creek Indians and belonged to the larger nation of Pit River Indians. Historians believe their population to have been about 3,000. The Atsugewi avoided the caves as they believed an ape man lived in the caves. This could be an early sighting of Sasquatch.
Warning: This is an unescorted trip underground. Make sure you are prepared to Spelunk with proper preparation, equipment and a partner. Visibility underground is zero without a flashlight. Flashlights are available for rent at the Old Station information center just a half mile south of Subway Cave on Highway 89. There are some low ceilings and the cave floor is rough, rocky and unforgiving if you fall. The cave temperature is a constant 46 degrees.
Hike: After a short walk from the trailhead, stairs lead into the cave. After your eyes adjust to the darkness the beauty of the cave starts to reveal itself to your senses. Done in a clockwise direction you enter at the Devils Doorway and proceed down Stubtoe Hall. Around the first bend a test of lights out will amaze at how dark it can be. Proceeding thru the wind tunnel the ceilings will range from 6 feet to 19 feet tall. Hesitating here you can feel a slight breeze. Arriving at a Y, taking a left you will dead end at Lucifers Cul-de-sac. Return to the main cave bear left thru the Sanctum. You then come across a partial collapse which is reassuring. The cave is 1300 feet long but seems much further when traveling it. Stairs at the far end will bring you out into the blinding sunshine and the trail circles around back to the trailhead.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.