United States » Hole In The Wall

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Overview Location & Specifics Conditions Resources Nearby Systems  
Portions of the following information were taken from Florida Geological Survey Bulletin 66.

From the intersection of SR 71 and CR 164 north of Marianna, travel east on CR 164 approximately 1.7 miles to the intersection with Hunter Fish Camp Road. Turn south (right) onto Hunter Fish Camp Road and travel approximately 0.5 miles to the intersection with Lamar Drive. Turn west (right) onto Lamar Drive and travel approximately 0.17 mile to the boat ramp. Hole-in-the-Rock spring is located along the southeastern edge of Merritt’s Mill Pond approximately 0.7 mile downstream from Blue Springs Recreation Area.

Description - Hole-in-the-Rock Spring consists of a spring depression at the base of a limestone cliff. Merritt’s Mill Pond waters inundate the spring depression. A 10 ft wide spring vent is situated on the southeast side of the depression. The vent consists of a cavern leading into a cave system. Clear spring water discharges from this limestone opening at barely detectable rates. The oval spring depression measures 30 ft east to west and 20 ft north to south with a depth of 13.6 ft near the center. A limestone ledge juts out over the vent about 15 ft from the cliff face. The spring is bordered by the clear water mill pond to the north, west, and east. To the south rise steep, vegetation covered banks, reaching 25 to 50 ft above the spring. Hole-in-the-Rock Spring is a swimming and cave diving hotspot. A small wooden platform for swimming and diving access is on the northwest side of the pool. In June 2003, very little flow from the spring was detected
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Latitude: 30.783262
Longitude: -85.156198
Coordinate System:
Maximum Depth: 110'
 Cave Diving
 Cavern Diving
 Open Water Diving
Merritts Mill Pond
Date Submitter Visbility Remarks
3/3/2019 Tom C 20-90’’ Milky in the entrance room, opening up to 70-90’ vis upstream. Turned at the century tunnel and moved to the downstream side. 30’ viz diminishing as I went further. Was down to 20’ or so at 900’. Temp 67.
2/28/2016 Mer 80ft First 300ft-ish, 80 ft vis, blue.
2/28/2016 Mer 30-80ft Downstream: 30ft vis to 600ft penetration, plenty of salamanders Upstream: 30ft vis to 400ft, then cleared dramatically, 80 ft vis and blue and stayed that way until 1200ft , including even on the jump to Century Tunnel, even more salamanders Slight water movement OUT of cave, cavern is cold, however.
2/13/2016 Stu Weg Variable Vis was the worst I've seen for the furthest I've seen in the 3 years I've been diving Hole. Extremely milky or hazy all the way to the T to the Century Tunnel, and about 700' down the tunnel. At times. it was like a fog rolling through with better visibility above or below the fog-line in spots. The vis in the Century Tunnel became stellar by about 2000' total penetration from the entrance.
6/29/2015 Ryan 60 Went downstream to 1300 ft great vis and no flow the whole way.
5/23/2015 Brandon 40-100 went downstream to EOL. Milky or hazy the whole way. Also took the T at 2500 to the maze of Ts where the viz was crackling blue
1/12/2015 Aotus (via CDF) 20-50' The new dock is in, has been for a while. Upstream & downstream very hazy, requiring a apt use of primary light to see well through beyond 15' or so. Imperceptible flow in the cave, barely noticeable in the cavern. 1400' upstream and no improvement.
4/18/2014 Victor Zamora 30 Upstream vis was LOW until about 400ft back. Very milky. Flow in cavern zone definitely noticeable. New dock should be done soon.
2/7/2014 Bil Lindstrom 30-80 Slight flow still present going in. Downstream is milky and cold, 30' at best. Century Tunnel viz gradually clears to 80'. Beware - the steps and dock are getting worse. There is a plank missing from the dock, a nice spot for small items to slip through. The first step from the top is bad and appears about to give. The 2nd or 3rd step from the bottom is gone.
9/16/2013 Oliver 40'-60' Downstream and Upstream are both a little milky, although overall the visibility is still between 40' and 60'. There is a slight little flow coming out of the Downstream section and Upstream appears to be siphoning accordingly.
8/13/2012 JCook 100' Did a 2500' double stage dive yesterday at Hole in the Wall in the Downstream Tunnel. Vis was beautiful with just a small/negligible amount of particulate in the water for about the first 1600'. After that got a little milky with a decent amount of particulate in the water in spots, and after about 2300' the vis went to about 50' or less with a good amount of stuff in the water.

There are a lot of fin marks in the clay bottom, which is sad, but it is still the most beautiful cave I have been to thus far. I would definitely recommend having your buoyancy perfect before venturing into this system, since there are a lot of drop-unders between domes and the bottom is silt and clay. Also, the water is REALLY COLD (I'm as wuss), 66 F and some parts have a legitimate thermocline if you drop to the bottom of the cave.
7/1/2012 Mer 50-100' Pond surface water 77 deg at boat dock, 66 deg in cave. Downstream 50' of vis near door, improved to 80' in Motha of All Waters and 100' and crystal in Constellation Corridor (63 deg in Const. Corr.). No noticeable flow.
5/28/2012 Riana 40' Not a distinguishable flow, cave was as I was told it would be not great vis till you went well in to the system. Downstream is reported to be blown out, was told that by a couple of teams. Upstream was murky till you passed 2000' then cleared some.
5/3/2012 Mer 60-100' Upstream 60-80' and 62deg. Clearer and warmer (66 deg) in shallow section past London Bridge. Few weeds on surface. Multiple steps missing on stairs to platform.
4/28/2012 David Reiterman 50 feet Little to no flow. Viz was good, a little hazy.
3/15/2012 Bil Lindstrom 10-40 Little if any flow. Low viz in tunnel to the tee for the Champagne Bottle. From there it cleared up to at best 40 to the Bottle. Beware - the 3rd step from the bottom is missing off of the platform.
10/17/2011 Iowa Cave Diver 40' no discernable flow... viz was a milky/hazy 40 depending upon depth. Not good, not bad... diveable.
9/4/2011 Dave Jones 30-40' The downstream section had no detectable flow with 30-40' visibility, at least to about 1000' in. We took a few photos of blind salamanders near the "Big E", though these seemed more abundant 2 months earlier.
7/4/2011 Dave Jones 30-50' Flow was barely noticeable. Upstream had 30-40' visibility yesterday, though a section around 700' in the cave the vis was only 1-2'. Today the Downstream section had 40-50' visibility.
3/28/2011 Shawn 20-60 Upstream was the same as Ben said a few days ago. Downstream stayed at 20-30 to 1000 feet in, then we turned.
3/23/2011 Ben 60' Upstream, first 300' was 20-30' vis but after that it was clear. Temps have warmed up as well. About 65 F at the bottom and 68 F in the cavern. Swam to 1400' on the goldline.
2/6/2011 atedeschi 10'-15' This was dive two of the day as the sun was heading down. The water outside the cave seemed cooler but it def was colder inside then Jackson. Vis was a 10-15', I could never see more then two knots in the goldline. The cave appears to big big but could not see much due to poor vis. Made the jump just past 400' to the right in the upstream side. The depth got shallower and water warmed up and vis got alil better. The jump was a small passage in length but opens up in to a dome room, reminded me of double domes in Ginnie.
12/6/2010 Lynne Flaherty varied Remarkable thermocline throughout the upstream cave -- shallow water was 68, deep water was 59. Viz in the cold water was in the 20 foot range, in the warm, the water was crystal clear. Great dive!
10/30/2010 Louis 20-30 Vis was poor but still a great dive. I love this cave!
9/26/2010 Brad Bremer 5-40' Spent 2 days diving HITW. First day we dove upstream, 30-40' viz until the 80' level, where there was a "milky layer" with viz around 5' and the water was noticeably cooler 64*. Today we dove downstream the "Big E" tunnel and the viz was around 40' throughout. Very nice dive
9/18/2010 Mathew Bull 40-60' Downstream looked great, plenty enough to enjoy even the bigger rooms.
8/21/2010 Kim Mace 60 Dove the upstream portion. Viz was great, no noticeable flow. Temperature averaged 68 degrees F (which made me regret my decision to wear a 3 mm and a shorty!). Beautiful dive!
3/28/2010 Jim Clark N/A Readers should note that Walter's report on 3/27/10 refers to the cave's "upstream" and "downstream" sections in contrast to what the System Map link on this page shows. To clarify, Walter's report for the "downstream" actually refers to the section which contains the Century Tunnel and his report for the "upstream" actually refers to the section which contains the Big E. I know this after a conversation with Walter post dive.
3/27/2010 Walter Pickel 15-60 Dove "downstream" to the end of the goldline. Viz was 20' until 450' and then became very clear. TONS of life "downstream": blind albino salamanders, crawfish and amphipods. Dove 1000' "upstream"...viz never got better than 15'.
2/21/2010 Iowa Cave Diver 15-50' clear water has moved up to between the 300-400' range and clears dramatically within a few feet difference... very cool visible thermocline a ways down the century tunnel... looks like a halocline and has a 2-3 degree difference.
2/15/2010 Jim Clark 10'-clear Visibility at the end of the cavern and dropping down to the gold line beginnings is 10' and remains that way to p400' in the downstream section. In the upstream, the viz slowly improves to 40'-50' upon reaching p500'. Once into the Century Tunnel, viz quickly clears. Temperature was generally 68*F with some occasional thermoclines down to 65*F. Flow is noticeably light in the cavern zone.
1/30/2010 Randy Fountain 20' Almost no flow with 20' vis to 350' in the upstream side.
1/17/2010 Pete Gelbman 30`-clear Upstream mainline - milky 30 ft vis. Century tunnel 40-50 ft vis for about 500 ft, then crackling clear all the way to Big Ben, which is freaking awesome (first time for us to make it there).
1/15/2010 Jim Clark 20'-clear The missing step for the platform stairs has been replaced. Downstream viz to p800' is 20' with particulate. Upstream viz to p700' is the same, then it very gradually increases to 45' to p1250' on the gold line. The Century Tunnel viz starts off with 45' and remains that way until reaching the halfway point to London Bridge, where it improves to clear conditions. There are several thermoclines in the Upstream and Century Tunnel with temperature dipping down to 65*F.
1/10/2010 Jim Clark Unknown The fourth step down from the top of the platform at Hole in the Wall is missing. The two lag bolts which held the step are still in the runners and protruding. Repair should be made by Friday the 15th, until it's fixed exercise caution when using the steps for water entry/exit.
1/1/2010 Marv Gozum 20' on gold line, good in the jumps From entry, thermoclines made for murky vis and patches of cold water. Things cleared up once past the jump towards Big Ben on onward. Vis was at easily 100' at least entirely to the Champagne room for our New Years Day. On the "other" side where the "E" is vis was 5-10' on gold line up to 2600' but clear inside the jumps to the Constellation Room and the smaller circuit before it.
12/26/2009 Kevin Weaver 50 As Andrew reported a few days ago, the conditions for the downstream portion were slightly milky for the first 600ft and then it opened up to 100 feet (as far as my 21W HID could shine). For the downstream, we only went in for a few hundred feet and it was slightly milky...probably 30-40ft viz. Beautiful cave system....can not wait to go back!
12/20/2009 Andrew Ainslie 1000 feet OK, it wasn't 1000 ft. But I went to the right (downstream?) and basically followed the line to the end where it gets super shallow and there's a champagne bottle and an old broken blue bottle. What an UNBELIEVABLE dive! The conditions were murky for about 1000 feet then they opened up... and up... until it made Ginnie's best day look bad. The tempreature kept oscillating with warm and cold patches interleaved - at times you cold see the mixing between layers. Afterwards in a fit of boredom I went the other way, where a couple of other teams had gone. It served to prove that I'd made the right choice - it was ghastly, about 10-20 ft vis. When I chatted to them afterwards they said it had been pretty poor the whole way that they went in.
12/4/2009 Brian Hamilton 10'-60' First 300 ft of downstream was milky 10'-30' viz. After that, back to 1300 feet was 30'-40'. Upstream was 10'-30' first 200 feet. After that, I would call it clear, 60'-80' back to 1500 feet. Upstream was very, very nice.
11/28/2009 Mathew Bull 10-40'(upstream) Did a dive in the beginning of the system to help a buddy take some photos. Visibility varied from 10-20' with lots of particulation in the water. It didn't look like the typical bad visibility at Hole, it looked more like someone mucked the hell out of it before we got there. It did seem to clear up the further you go back.
11/15/2009 Jeff Schreiber 50-60 Basin is clearer than I've ever seen it, no duckweed and you can see the log clearly from the platform. Upstream was 40-50, getting better the further in. Century tunnel was 70 .
10/11/2009 Sandy Robinson 40' Dove the Upstream section to 1100 feet. Viz in the cave averaged about 40. The entrance was much clearer. Nice day to be on the millpond.
9/30/2009 Jim Clark 25'-60' Downstream to p1600' viz is 25'-30'. Upstream to p1500' viz is predominantly 60'. Viz in the Century Tunnel deteriorates quickly in the first 100' to 30'.
8/30/2009 sam leflore 30 up stream and down both looed about the same. system very milky. dove it the day before the it was almost crystal clear. not sure why it milked up overnight.
6/28/2009 Mathew Bull (upstream)40-60' First 800 feet had slightly 40' visibility and then improved the further you went in. Took the Century Tunnel a few hundred feet back and it seemed crystal clear, and cold(read 64F at some point back there).
6/14/2009 David Todd 30' - 50' Went to Hole in the wall, nice but vis was only 30' - 50'.
5/13/2009 Jim Clark 30'-80' The system viz is predominantly 30' at best in both upstream to p1000' and downstream to p2800'. Once into downstream's Consolation Corridor about 100' the viz quickly improves to 80' and remains so to about p3700' in the Corridor. Min temp was occasionally 66*F.
4/21/2009 Jim Clark 30' Flow quite noticeable at the entrance restriction. Viz is hazy and occasional thermoclines with temp down to 66*f as far upstream as p1000'.
3/22/2009 Mathew Bull 40-100' 40' of visibility from the entrance to about 1700'p where it cleaned up to 100' of visibility on the goldline. White line, right on the first mainline "T", had about 20' of visibility. Very nice!
3/8/2009 Shirley Kasser Milky, but not bad We went downstream about 1400'. The viz was fine for diving, but only so-so for photography. One particularly active catfish was doing more than his fair share of silting around 200'. Minimal flow and very pleasant dive. I see new jumps to check out every time I dive here. The Millpond was virtually empty all day.
2/1/2009 Mathew Bull 15-40'(upstream) Went Upstream Sunday morning with the first several hundred feet having 15-20' of visibility. By the time we reached the end of the Gold Line(Alfred's Room) it had improved to 30-40' of visibility. The white line coming off the gold line into the shallow tunnel had 10-15' of very milky visibility.
1/31/2009 Mathew Bull 20-60'(downstream) Went Downstream Saturday afternoon with the first several hundred feet of cave being a bit milky with 20-30' of visibility. By the time we reached the "T" around 1900' it had cleared to 50-60' of visibility.
1/26/2009 Jamie Z 25-60ft Viz from entrance to Century tunnel was approx 25-30ft,,,,once in the tunnel viz opened up to roughly 60ft all the way to Big Ben
12/24/2008 Jim Clark 20'-clear Upstream: viz from gold line beginning to about p400' was 20'. From p400' to the Century Tunnel tee (p1250') viz was about 30', then up the Tunnel viz improved quickly to clear conditions before London Bridge to p4000'. Flow is up but easily swimmable. Thermoclines in the deeper sections were about 65*F, but temp generally 68*F.
11/21/2008 Jim Clark 15'-clear Downstream was really downstream with a very light flow. Viz was 30' and started improving at p800', becoming 50'-60 from p1700'to p2300'. Upstream was initially 15' from the gold line beginning to p300', then gradually increasing to 50' by p1000'. The Century Tunnel was clear to London Bridge. Min temp downstream was 67*, upstream 66*, at 20' in the entrance 65*.
11/1/2008 Mathew Bull 20-30'ish Did a short dive upstream with an Intro diver, didn't get very far but it was fun. Visibility smokey and in the 20-30' range.
10/15/2008 Mike Morgan 30 - 60' Downstream to 1200 feet - vis smoky and about 30 feet at beginning of Downstream tunnel, clearing up the further in - 60' plus past 1000 feet penetration.
9/6/2008 Mathew Bull 20-25' and Milky Just went down downstream to 1400'p, I hear upstream clears up to around 80' past 600'p(can't confirm 1st hand)
5/13/2008 Jim Clark 40'-60' Two separate teams dove each section twice. Downstream to p1300' had the above viz with a few areas disturbed by catfish, temp 67*F. Upstream to p1500' had viz often exceeding 60', occasional thermocline noticed below 80' depth. Temp 67*-64*F, first 250' of the Century tunnel had the same conditions. A very light flow noticable only from the entrance to the vertical drop.
4/5/2008 Shawn 30-70 Visibility faded a bit below the thermocline 66F-68F. Did the upstream section to about p1500'. Low flow and a beautiful dive. Conditions are great for now.
3/22/2008 Jim Clark 25'-50' Lower viz in the first 200' of the "upstream" section, then about 50' to p1600'. Thermocline at 80', above 68*F and below 66*f. A slight flow exists.
3/17/2008 Phil 20-25 Vis was crapy. We heard that some people doved on the 16 with scooters so may be that was the reason. But for the rest, interesting dive . No flow.
3/2/2008 Jason Richards 20'-30' Did a short dive in Hole in the wall today- Unfortunately, it is not good- Visibility to the left was 18-20 feet diver to diver, with the white walls reflecting vaguely from 30 feet or so-I went out to the T junction. The right side is only slightly better. The best visibility is in the shaft from the entrance and the basin. Very green water when viewing other divers.
11/21/2007 Jim Clark 10'-20' Flow is low, thermocline at 60' depth. Max temp 67* F, min 61* F. Swam upstream to p1000'. Lots of silt on bottom from entrance to the vertical drop, surface covered with duckweed and vegetation. Recommend running primary from the platform.
9/4/2007 Jim Clark 50'-70' Bil Lindstrom & I dove the downstream section to the Silver Dollar restriction, about p1750'. Temp was 67*, with some sections prior to the Big E having viz about 30' due to catfish activity. Flow negligible. Mill pond water level is low, and the platform steps below water are very slippery,exercise caution.
8/17/2006 Andy Lamborn 70 We did the down stream side to around 2100 feet. The visibility was good.
7/3/2006 Tim 70' Dove both upstream and downstream tunnels. Temperature was 67F except it varied significantly upstream in the 35' area. Visibility was great except for a very murky (nearly zero) vis stretch between 500' and 600' upstream, which looked like it was coming in from a deeper tunnel on the side wall. The Century Tunnel was crystal clear... absolutely beautiful. Overall, awesome conditions.
6/17/2006 Walter Pickel 60' Did a great dive in both the upstream as well as the downstream tunnels. Flow is light but positive. temperature was 68°
5/7/2006 Jim Clark 60' Low flow as usual, very good conditions. Temp was 68*, one team did downstream to 200' past Big E, other team did upstream.
4/11/2006 Tim 40' Visibility was a milky muddy 40' throughout the "upstream" section with a hazier layer when you dropped below 70 feet. Vis went up to around 80' in the "downstream" section with some light particulate. Temperature was around 66F throughout, except deco was a little warmer as the Mill Pond has warmed up. Both sides were springing, although it was only noticeable if you stopped and watched the particulate.
3/31/2006 Bob Overstreet 50 Temperature was a constant 68F through out. Visibility was consistent up and downstream. Flow seemed insignificant.
2/5/2006 jviehe 20 or less in first few hundred Upstream viz dropped to nothing after 100 ft. Downstream was better but still about 20. River water is a few degrees colder making for a cold exit.
11/18/2005 Bob Overstreet Very Good Hole-in-the-Wall was 68F and light flow (similar to what I associated with Peacock Peanut tunnel to be) although flow was pronounced at the first restriction, with a temp of 66F at 20ft on deco due to cold water intrusion from pond.
9/17/2005 Mathew Bull 30-40' in Open Water portion Visibility in open water around the entrance was typical with the rest of the pond. Can't comment on cavern or cave as I did not go in. Lots of fish, crawfish, and vegetation to play around in...
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Description Type Date Author Remarks
 System Map Map
Sslect Search Radius:
System Depth Cave Cavern OW Last Report Distance (mi)
 Overview Information Available for Jackson Blue Spring  Jackson Blue Spring 105 True True False 2/27/2023 1.1
 Overview Information Available for Bozel Spring  Bozel Spring 110 True False False 12/29/2021 5.7
 Overview Information Available for Twin Caves  Twin Caves 100 True False False 3/2/2019 0.8
 Overview Information Available for Shangri-la Springs  Shangri-la Springs 40 True True True 5/31/2014 0.9
 Overview Information Available for Maund Spring  Maund Spring 70 True False False 5/12/2012 4.4
 Overview Information Available for Gator Hole  Gator Hole 42 True False False 9/28/2011 0.8
   Indian Washtub 82 True False False 11/3/2008 0.8
   Sandbag Spring True False False 3.9