Thanks to the great tool available on chunkbase.com, I managed to find an abandoned mineshaft. It’s right near my desert temple, and near my base.
Once I realized there was a spawner there, I excavated more and more of a pit for sunlight to reach into. Daytime level sunlight stops cave spider spawners. When it was not functioning, it wasn’t hard to build in the last steps and neutralize it with torches. This did cost me three deaths and involved losing everything being carried – none of which was super valuable, at least.
Compared to getting in, adventuring in the mineshaft has been easy. A creeper got next to me and blasted me – but Diamond Chestplate with Blast Protection IV makes that no big deal. Past that, all I’ve needed to do is block paths off and excavate all the resources.
After thoroughly looting one, and planning to find more and dig through them, I planted the melon seeds (yay!) I had dug up and began work on making my base more of a castle.
I want to make some towers next to the face of the building/cave, which shouldn’t be too hard given the mountains it is tucked into. So first step was simply to build up the area around the base, and make it taller.
Now to fill it in with cobblestone behind that, which is a bigger task than you might think –