Author Topic: Draenen New Entrances  (Read 7890 times)

Offline rhychydwr1

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Draenen New Entrances
« on: September 10, 2017, 12:01:41 pm »
Please correct me if I am wrong, but as I understand it there is only one entrance to Ogof Draenan.  All the other entrances have been blocked off.  Nig, can you confirm this?

Offline Ogof anghenfil

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2017, 09:53:44 pm »
The third entrance, Drws Cefn, has been wide open for the last six years or so, the landowner and PDCMG don't like people using it but probably more people use it than the main entrance.

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2017, 10:48:45 pm »
I find it hard to believe that a system as large as Draenen, with its relationship to the surface topography, has as few as five entrances.

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Offline RobinGriffiths

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2017, 11:31:31 pm »
Are there any entrances south from the original? Or are they all around Pwll Du?

I suppose that the passages and the topography both follow the dip southwards?

However I did read an paper by Andy Farrant at some point, and I think it was all quite complex.

Robin

Offline The Old Ruminator

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2017, 06:15:22 pm »
The geomorpholgy, hydrology and exploration history of Ogof Draenen are summarised in " Cave and Karst Science " Vol. 38 No. 1, April 2011.
Suffice it to say the the formation of the system is very complex with water flow switching around at 180 degrees. The incision in the escarpment at Cwm Llanwenarth seems to have broken into the system at several points then becoming blocked with scree. A geology detail indicates that Megadrive conduit has been exposed in a quarry on the North side of Gilwern Hill with a relict resurgence noted South of The Blorenge. So together with the incision along the North edge of the system and various relict sinks and resurgences I would say the potential for a good few entrances is quite reasonable.

Offline The Old Ruminator

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2017, 06:30:50 pm »
Lamb and Fox Chamber which lies close to the escarpment.



The Nunnery



Indiana Highway.



Old slide images from when the cave was first discovered and myself a younger man.

Online Andy Farrant

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2017, 12:03:59 am »
Yes, from a geological perspective, Ogof Draenen could potentially have many entrances. As the cave has four or five independant phases of development (stacked on top of each other), each with a set of inputs (stream sinks) and outputs (springs), which have then been partially truncated by valley incision and scarp retreat, this is not surprising. The could be a dozen entrances in the Pwll Ddu area alone and along the northern end of Gilwen Hill, others on the south side of the Blorenge, and some in the Afon Lwyd valley south of Blaenavon. In fact, what is more surprising is that Ogof Draenen had no entrances for so long!

Whether these should be opened up is of course a whole different debate...

Offline sion

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2017, 05:24:12 pm »
For the southern end start by looking in Fiddys, make sure you ask the kind lady in the farm down at the bottom for permission as its on private land!

Offline Huge

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2017, 08:03:48 pm »
Hi Sion, thanks for posting the information.

Sorry, I'm not quite following a couple of things you said.

Is the new entrance Fiddy's Farm Cave itself or on land belonging to Fiddy's Farm?

When you say 'For the southern end' do you mean the 4th entrance going into the sourthern end of the cave?

The Fiddy's Farm area is a long way from any previously known part of the cave. Has a lot of cave been found and where does it connect into the previously known cave?

Sorry for all the questions!

Cheers,
Huw.

Offline NigR

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2017, 12:06:15 am »
Hi Huw,

As Sion has clearly chosen not to respond to your questions, it would appear that it is down to me to say something positive in order to prevent all this rampant misinformation from spiralling even further out of control.

To be specific:

Neither Fiddy's Farm Cave nor Cuckoo Pot (next door to FFC) are connected to the Ogof Draenen system.

The landowners are indeed quite amenable to cavers visiting but it is essential that you call at the farm first and close all gates on the way up through the fields. Car parking is extremely limited (small layby a little way past the farm) and can be somewhat muddy in wet weather - if you have a smart car I would strongly suggest you share transport with someone who doesn't!

Please respect any digging equipment you might find in situ and be particularly careful if you go down Cuckoo Pot - the final dig is extremely loose and dangerous, so try not to kill yourselves!

Cheers,
Nig


Offline sion

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2017, 09:14:16 am »
Hi Nig,

Thanks for the reply, I have been on the road and unable to reply until now.

I was giving it away as a possible entrance for anyone searching, not a current one.

The cave was dug by a group from west midlands around 20 or more years ago, the dig was then taken on by myself in 2009. I found out the dig had been "pirated" and had broken through to large passage while I was on a trip to nz.
It could quite likely break into the unknown reaches of draenen or be an independent system itself.

Offline Rhys

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2017, 03:08:35 pm »
Global Moderator Comment  It has been suggested that the landowner at Fiddy's Farm may not be expecting the hordes of visitors that its mention on this thread might generate. So if you're going to visit, perhaps apply a bit of common sense and consideration to the landowner. I might suggest: 1. Don't all go this week. 2. Maybe contact someone who knows the place first (Sion or Nigr might be a good start). 3. Maybe give some notice and don't call during unsociable hours. PS. It's on enclosed farmland, NOT Access land.

Offline Ogof anghenfil

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2017, 04:48:56 pm »
Has anyone got a description of fiddy's farm cave?
And how many ladders are required, pitch heights, etc?

Offline Minion

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2017, 09:24:24 pm »
Was there this much fuss when the second Darren Cilau entrance was opened? I wasn't caving then, so I don't know the history.

Offline NigR

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #14 on: September 14, 2017, 10:26:36 pm »
To answer Minion's query first:

In short, no there wasn't. But, then again, access to Daren was not (supposedly) administered by a cave management group intent upon rigidly enforcing a (totally unrealistic) single entrance policy.

Secondly, I would concur with all of the highly sensible points regarding Fiddy's made by Rhys earlier. I will be adding to Sion's potted history of digging at this particular site in due course but, for now, do not be fooled by his mention of "large passage" into thinking that you are going be seeing another Draenen, otherwise you will be extremely disappointed. I have not visited last year's extension but I have spoken to people who have: total length is c.200m, including 2 largish chambers with a nasty dig in a choke at the end........and that is it, end of story!

Finally, this brings me on to the post by Ogof anghenfil which, sadly, must be viewed as yet another bizarre attempt at disseminating deliberate misinformation. Well, he has got his description of the cave above and, if he cares to read it, he will find the answer to his second question contained therein (i.e. zero ladders are required because there are zero pitches). Problem is, he knew all of this already, which certainly begs the question as to why he should be bothering to ask in the first place?!

Offline Alkapton

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #15 on: September 17, 2017, 01:03:43 am »
I remember about five and a half months ago I was shown details of the new Abergavenny Road enterance.   Perhaps now is the time for Graigwen to diseminate more information about parking etc.
If at first you don't find Australia keep digging.

Offline Minion

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #16 on: September 17, 2017, 12:45:09 pm »
What do you mean by the 'Abergavenny Road'?

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #17 on: September 17, 2017, 06:41:14 pm »
What do you mean by the 'Abergavenny Road'?

The reference is to the site down the dirt track beyond the black metal barrier on the B4246.

I have just got home from work and will post a detailed response shortly.


Offline Graigwen

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #18 on: September 17, 2017, 07:26:34 pm »
I remember about five and a half months ago I was shown details of the new Abergavenny Road enterance.   Perhaps now is the time for Graigwen to diseminate more information about parking etc.


1  It is not true that it provides a new entrance into Ogof Draenen

2  It is not true that the concrete blockhouse was erected with ERDF Tier 3 funds.

3  It is not true that the road will be upgraded with ERDF funds.

4  It is not true that the front entrance, although large, is intended to provide parking.

5  It is true that the site is privately owned - by Dwr Cymru.

6  It is true that this is a secure site, surrounded by a fence designed to keep humans out, although apparently permeable to sheep.

7  It is true that in the past social events have been held on the roof, but in general access is now prohibited to any part of the site.

8  It is true that various security measures have been taken. In particular, the locked roof hatches also have remote alarms that will detect any attempt to open them, and will bring flashing blue lights to the site very quickly.

9  The site is situated on the Lower Coal Measures. In addition, much of the nearby area is covered by tipped mine waste.  The immediate area was prospected in Spring 2017, nothing of interest to cavers was found, although there is one feature about 400m away that has been tentatively suggested as an upward propagated collapse feature. It is true that water from Ogof Draenen probably passes nearby at a much lower altitude. Think about the date of the original report.


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Offline Alkapton

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2017, 12:23:51 am »
Sorry, Graigwen, when you asked me to prompt you I thought you were refering to what you sent me earlier in the year, i might even go looking for it in my emails   :lol:
If at first you don't find Australia keep digging.

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2017, 08:50:45 am »
Sorry, Graigwen, when you asked me to prompt you I thought you were refering to what you sent me earlier in the year, i might even go looking for it in my emails   :lol:

That's OK. Clearly just a misunderstanding.

Offline Alex

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2017, 06:23:21 pm »
So for those of us outside of Wales, new entrance yes/no/windup?
Anything I say is represents my own opinion and not that of a any club/organisation that I am a member of (unless its good of course)

Offline AWW

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #22 on: September 18, 2017, 06:36:12 pm »
My money's on elaborate wind up.

Offline Graigwen

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #23 on: September 20, 2017, 10:05:00 am »
Dudley Bug has drawn attention on another thread to the new 3D geology viewer from the BGS and reminded us that borehole details are available via the viewer. The I'r de o Draenen project has made extensive use of this information over the past two years but others interested in Ogof Draenen may not be aware of what is available.

On this site you can see the borehole log for the Pen Ffordd Goch borehole which entered unexplored cave passage in the Gilwern Oolite at a depth of -116m.http://scans.bgs.ac.uk/sobi_scans/boreholes/264325/images/10528274.html  It is interesting to reflect that this borehole is close to a prominent depression on the roadside going up to Huntsman's car park. This depression looks just like a caprock collapse doline and lies above a straight line projection of the Big Country stream...but perhaps there is another explanation.

My favourite image from the borehole records of this area is one that shows Blaenavon looking like a Swiss cheese - how have we failed to enter these caves? http://scans.bgs.ac.uk/sobi_scans/boreholes/263697/images/10526498.html

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Offline alastairgott

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Re: Draenen New Entrances
« Reply #24 on: September 20, 2017, 10:41:07 am »
Baker Street (page 19 of Borehole scan below) seems to have disappeared on modern maps, best I can find is James Street and William Street. https://goo.gl/maps/qnJVwccJnVR2

My favourite image from the borehole records of this area is one that shows Blaenavon looking like a Swiss cheese - how have we failed to enter these caves? http://scans.bgs.ac.uk/sobi_scans/boreholes/263697/images/10526498.html

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