Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Greises Cave, Allegany County

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The cave is in the Tonoloway Limestone which dips steeply to the east. The passages are developed along a series of prominent joints. There is much fallen rock near the entrance chamber, and during the wet season water flows along some of the some of the upper passages.

Greises Cave (photo by Dennis Slifer)
Greises Cave


The entrance is over a pile of rocks sloping 12 feet to a chamber about 20 feet square. From here a passage leads down at a steep angle for 200 feet and then curves to a crawlway 40 feet long. At the bottom is a "Z" shaped passage to the first large chamber. The passage is only 1 to 2 feet high and difficult to traverse because of its peculiar shape. It opens near the ceiling of the first large chamber. This chamber is 20 feet high, 10 feet wide and 15 feet long. A ledge leads along the wall near the entrance and foothold may be found at the end of it. At the bottom are two small chambers filled with mud.

A wide passage leads down from this chamber to a smaller room which narrows to a crawlway 15 feet long. The crawlway expands to standing height within 10 feet, but remains narrow throughout its length. At the end is a second chamber from which three passages continue, one to the left and two to the right. The left one is impassable beyond 10 feet. The right ones are actually a single passage divided by fallen rock. The chamber itself is 10 feet high and 15 feet long but only about 4 feet wide. A steeply sloping bank of mud climbs to an opening 3 feet in diameter which gives access to the Well Room, so named because of a shaft 25 feet deep in the middle of the room. The Well Room varies from 4 to 7 feet in height due to irregular formations. The shaft must be crossed to reach the other side of the room. Water, seeping along the sides of this room, forms a small waterfall over the edge of the shaft, making a descent of the shaft uncomfortable at best. At the base of the shaft is a second room, irregular in outline but about 6 feet square with the ceiling merging into the shaft itself. Three unexplored passages lead from this room. Further, 2 blind tunnels, each about 4 feet long, lead from the Well Room., The room is so wet and muddy that exploration from this point on is difficult. There are three small pools in ledges on the walls.

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Allegany County cave index map