Bennett Spring State Park, Missouri

January 07, 2015


Tommy Hornbeck
Summary Authors: Tommy Hornbeck; Jackie Phillips

A lone fisherman casts for rainbow trout on the edge of an abyss known as Bennett Spring that drops 75 ft (23 m) down and 100 ft (30 m) southwest. It has rarely been explored beyond this depth because there is a narrowing of the cave passageway to a 3 ft (1 m) by 10 ft (3 m) throat, and the high velocity of the water, as well as a gravel boil stops further exploration. Through this narrow passageway flows an average of 96 million gallons of fresh water per day.

In 2014 a team of divers did travel through 1,700 ft (518 m) of passageways. At a depth of 170 ft (52 m), they were deeper than most sport divers go and needed nearly 3 hours to decompress before returning to the spring surface in order to prevent decompression illness. Photo taken on December 3, 2014.

Photo details:  Nikon D7100 camera; 1/200 sec. exposure; f/9; ISO 400.