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Winter Boating Inside Bonnechere Caves

Eganville, Ontario - Jan. 27, 2007

We filmed a re-creation of the original discovery of the Bonnechere caves by hauling an inflatable boat across the ice near the raging river then descending into the cave itself to navigate its narrow chambers.

In the summer, the cave has the water pumped out of it, allowing people to walk through it but in the winter, it's allowed to re-fill with water and is closed to the public. There were hundreds of bats clinging to the ceiling and walls of the cave and the temperature inside barely changes all year round and stays a few degrees above freezing despite the frigid temperatures outside.

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Deep inside the flooded cave.
One concern was the jagged rock walls of the cave. We were worried that they might shred the small inflatable boat that we used to navigate the interior of the cave. Another concern was the temperature of the water. Even though I was wearing a dry suit, being in cold water for so many hours is difficult.
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One of the icy entrances to the cave along the riverside.

Outside the cave, the river rapids were raging.

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The view looking out at the river from the cave entrance.

Ice stalactites mark the cave opening.

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Pulling the inflatable boat up from the river into the cave.

Filming inside the cave itself for "Angry Planet" Dry spots were few & far between.