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Good caves near PSM? (France)

Winnat's Caver

Active member
Hello, we at Sheffield University Speleological Society have booked the PSM through trip in mid June, but are unsure of what other caves in the region are good and worth doing.

If anyone has recommendations for good caving in the south of France we'd love to hear! Even better if you have rout descriptions too :)

=
 

wellyjen

Well-known member
Couey Lodge is good. Entrance is close to the road between Saint Engrace and the ski resort at PSM. Needs a fair bit of string, but suitable for a smallish group over about three days, rigging and derigging. Grotte d'Arphidia is also fun, but this is now used for guided adventure trips, so don't know what the situation is for proper caving. Several decades since I did these, so current access, rigging etc will need some research.
 

Fatman

Member
Suss went there in 88. Attempted the Couey Lodge. Things might have changed but what I remember is a steep scree slope held back by not much more than chicken wire. Quarter way down the big pitch rocks flying past dislodged by those above. Be careful, hopefully improvements have been made.
 

Leclused

Active member
Hello, we at Sheffield University Speleological Society have booked the PSM through trip in mid June, but are unsure of what other caves in the region are good and worth doing.

If anyone has recommendations for good caving in the south of France we'd love to hear! Even better if you have rout descriptions too :)

=

A lot of good caves there :) I think Arsip can help you, or do a search on "ARSIP" here on the forum

The following is a good contender : Arresteliako Ziloa
or a trip to Aranzadi this is the climb in Salle Verna from the top of the climb you can go further in several directions (more info via Arsip). If you only do the climb with entrance via the tunnel then this is a short trip. And i you're lucky and there are some tourists the salle verna will be lighted. This is a magnificant view from up there :)

Also check if Maria Dolorès is already a possibilty as a classical trip. I'm not sure if the exploration is completed already

 

Loki

Active member
We are heading to PSM area in august. Anyone got experience of the Critair zones? How do I sensibly avoid them or conversely does anyone know which sticker I need to buy for my 2006 vivaro? I’m bu99errd if I can find out which euro it is ( I think it’s 4) or if I’m even allowed to drive through a zone with such an old diesel, making buying a sticker pointless anyway.
As far as I can see I need to avoid Paris and Rouen.
 

Leclused

Active member
A lot of good caves there :) I think Arsip can help you, or do a search on "ARSIP" here on the forum

The following is a good contender : Arresteliako Ziloa
or a trip to Aranzadi this is the climb in Salle Verna from the top of the climb you can go further in several directions (more info via Arsip). If you only do the climb with entrance via the tunnel then this is a short trip. And i you're lucky and there are some tourists the salle verna will be lighted. This is a magnificant view from up there :)

Also check if Maria Dolorès is already a possibilty as a classical trip. I'm not sure if the exploration is completed already


Just to give you an idea, the following clip shows you the exploration via tunnel edf - Aranzadi - Maria D. Later on the connection was made with Xendako Zilao. In fact there are 2 connections.

 

first-ade

Member
We are heading to PSM area in august. Anyone got experience of the Critair zones? How do I sensibly avoid them or conversely does anyone know which sticker I need to buy for my 2006 vivaro? I’m bu99errd if I can find out which euro it is ( I think it’s 4) or if I’m even allowed to drive through a zone with such an old diesel, making buying a sticker pointless anyway.
As far as I can see I need to avoid Paris and Rouen.
Your v5 should list your Euro status, annoyingly mine is blank...
 

snebbit

Active member
Exactly, so is mine.
There are online checkers like this one, you can just enter your reg. You shouldn't have a problem if you're just passing by the major cities by motorway to get somewhere else. From what I gather, Paris being an exception, the other zones are dynamically ramped up depending on current air pollution, i.e. when pollution levels are bad (e.g. in the Alps at weekends during ski season), a lower Crit'Air score is the maximum threshold for entering. But again, I haven't seen any zone signs on arterial motorways so far, I'm guessing they're applied off the motorways.
 

Winnat's Caver

Active member
Hello, I've had the chance to look over these all and wanted to say thanks for all the recommendations!
I am going to forward all info on to the rest of my club
Thank you all tremendously <3
 

Loki

Active member
There are online checkers like this one, you can just enter your reg. You shouldn't have a problem if you're just passing by the major cities by motorway to get somewhere else. From what I gather, Paris being an exception, the other zones are dynamically ramped up depending on current air pollution, i.e. when pollution levels are bad (e.g. in the Alps at weekends during ski season), a lower Crit'Air score is the maximum threshold for entering. But again, I haven't seen any zone signs on arterial motorways so far, I'm guessing they're applied off the motorways.
Rouen is 24/7 on all roads as far as I can make out online. As my van is euro 3 I can’t go anywhere near the place. Will have to drive round to the north.
 
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