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Cueto Coventosa

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wildsurf

Guest
Is a permit required for this cave?  And if so how can I apply for one?

Cheers

Ben.
 
W

wildsurf

Guest
Can anyone point me in the direction of any information about the trip?  I've only read one trip report that has inspired me to try to arrange a trip next year, but obviously need to know more.
 

martinr

Active member
wildsurf said:
Can anyone point me in the direction of any information about the trip?  I've only read one trip report that has inspired me to try to arrange a trip next year, but obviously need to know more.

Send me your email address and I will email you the survey, and description (in Spanisih, I'm afraid)

 

SamT

Moderator
There will be one forth coming in the eldon journal when I get a write up from one of the lads who was there
 

Beardy

Member
Officially a permit is required to visit any cave in Cantabria (where cueto is located)  -

see http://www.espeleocantabria.net/permisos.htm  for details of getting permission

You have to fax it but i think that the fax number is one digit short 0034 9 42058602
( i think that the 9 was missing from the application form)


http://www.rrcpc.org.uk/newsletters/NL_V34_N2_A1.htm
was my write up

another good write up in english can be found in Caving International No 10 , jan 81
p16-21 "The Cueto-Coventosa Traverse" P. Morverand

Enjoy - it is a fantastic trip

Regards
Beardy
 

whitelackington

New member
Will u b attempting a "Pullthrough", not advized unless u have done it before, best to hard-rig, then if you have made it, undrowned across the three lakes, you on a further day, can climb back up the mountain and drop down the Cueto Shaft and retrieve your ropes.
Please bare in mind, this really is serrious shit.
Main problem being the unpredictability of the weather/flooding/drowning.
There are a few intermeadiate ropes, probably left in situ, these were horrifying when we did it, one chap abbed off and the sheath went with him, he was unhurt but it shook the shit out of us, so after that (IMMSMC) we left our own ropes in place but this was all15 years ago, so some things might be different. :coffee:
 

Beardy

Member
I have to disagree with "whitelackington" - hard rigging would take away most of the commitment of the trip.
The belays for pulling through on the 580m deep entrance series were quite good in the mid 90's.
The route from the base of the of entrance series was very well marked with reflective tape/markers.

I agree that the risk of drowning in the lakes is serious and would recomend one trip in from the bottom (possibly in full neoprene) to reccy the route and leave some inflatable lilos or boats on the upstream side of the lakes.
On the through trip I would wear a furry & oversuit as most of the trip is bone dry & very warm.     

Regards
Beardy
 

SamT

Moderator
Yes - most of the comments from the Eldon lads on their return centered around nearly drowning in the lakes.

ColinW on this site did it with them.
 

whitelackington

New member
Several months, prior to five of us from The Bracknell, doing it, we, of course first went in coventosa, to recca and take in boats & a food dump to place at furtherest part of lake, so, if after doing most of the trip as far as the start of the lakes, then seemed umpassable, we could have sat it out for half a week.
My point was, eerily for us a chap from Reading, 12 miles from Bracknell had died in the lakes from hypothermia/drowing and a set of crossed oars for placed as a reminder, for us and others, To take it very serriously.
This death occurred only months before we did the trip.
I might also add, that Dave Elliot put us up to doing it and strongly advized, NOT doing a pull through the first time, any mistakes and u will all be dead.
No rescue in Spain in those days and probably not now :read:
 

rsch

Member
There is some cave rescue resource available locally, but you'd almost certainly be looking at people having a good few hours of travelling time to build up the numbers you'd need to deal with any serious incident.

If any member of the party is especially large-chested or circumferentially-challenged, when doing a recce trip across the lakes it's worth adding on the extra few minutes to go as far as La Turbina - this is an awkward vertical downward section (when you are coming out the bottom) that's not straight-walled and almost easier to downclimb than come down directly on the rope. It's not all that tight, something like how I recall the entrance to Link Pot being, but it's the only thing that'll potentially stop you, and the psychological reassurance of knowing you've already established that you can fit down it is a big help at something like ten or more hours into the trip.

My experience is that the lakes are swimmable with a bit of buoyancy and warm gear in a drybag, but caution is very much advised.

It is a fantastic trip though - thoroughly recommended.
 

racingsnake

New member
Beardy That's a fantastic write up edge of seat kind of stuff . I have done PotII in france which is 302 meters and that was on full rigging, so I can image the underpant scrapes required after your descent of the entrance shaft.

Well done you lot you have my respect

D


 
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wildsurf

Guest
Do the lakes become impassible?

Is this a settled weather only trip?  Or might it be possible at Easter time?

And Beardy, I'm loving your trip report.
 

paul

Moderator
See if you can get a copy of "Gillett, J.E. 2002 Of caves and caving - A way and a life ". Inglesport had some copies left.

There's an excelent description of his trip to Cueto Coventosa - and many other excellent caving trip stories.
 

whitelackington

New member
Yes,
we spent two weeks on site setting our trip up, most of that was going in Coventosa to the start of the lakes (a very easy trip)
then monitoring the lake level
The level goes up fairly rappidly as you watch, at times it was rising by something like a metre an hour.
You really have to pick the correct time of the year, which from memory is August, end of the summer, just before the instant and terrific storms come, we wittnesed several of those storms, they start in an instant, huge trees are smashed of the hill side by boulders smashing into them from the rain, hailstones the size of golf balls at the same time.
I am not telling lies.  Very scarry if you are climbing an escarpment or on the scree at the time.
Yes u need a food dump, far side of the lakes, so if the lakes have risen to much or are too turbulent, you can sit it out.
 

racingsnake

New member
Whitlackington

But please tell more of the entrance pitch. Is it big in diameter as well as deep.
Beardy did a great write up on this trip. Why don't you do one on the forum I for one would love to hear about it. Might do one miself of potII in France its a bit of a knee
trembler.
 

cavermark

New member
SUSS had fun there in 2000. toys r us dingys over the lakes. 46 inch chest gets through la turbina. The entrance shaft is way deep but quite cosy circumference all the way.
 

biffa

New member
If Cueto is too wet then the Red del Silencio through trip is an awsome back up.  If it is too wet for that then there is always Tonio to Canyeulla.

See http://www.ramales.com/index_en.shtml
They have various rigging guides and surveys.

Enjoy.....  Guess where I'm going this Easter?
 

biffa

New member
wildsurf said:
Do the lakes become impassible?

Is this a settled weather only trip?  Or might it be possible at Easter time?

I have been in Coventosa in Easter 2004 and, for those of you who know Coventosa, met the water at the bottom of the steel traverse cable ~20minutes from the entrance.  I'd estimate that this was probably about 20-30m above the normal water level.  Mind you went there last Easter and the water was fine.

Easter is early this year, snow melt maybe a problem.
 
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