Author Topic: Trip log book 2013  (Read 1266 times)

Offline Rhys

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Trip log book 2013
« on: February 11, 2013, 11:42:48 am »
Ogof Fawr – 9/2/2013

Present: Rhys, Miles, Dan, Martin, Andy (not a club member…)

In the week running up to this trip, the numbers of people coming had swelled towards double figures. However, on the morning, for various reasons, it was just five of us who met up in a light drizzle, in a deserted forest near Merthyr Tydfil. The car park/picnic site where we had arranged to meet is now permanently gated off, so we drove a short way further on to park on the roadside out on the open mountain instead.

After kitting up we headed out across the hill to walk the mile or so the cave entrance. We set off in vaguely the right direction picking up what quad tracks or sheep tracks we came across. As we started to descend, the tracks petered out and, as nominal leader, I was cursed for taking the team into a trackless, boggy, tussocky hell. Firmer ground was eventually reached and we followed the stream down to the massive entrance doline and sink.

– lost on the moor in tussock hell

– nearly at the cave

– going in

I’d been lucky enough to enter the cave previously, shortly after it was opened up in 2008. At that time, the entrance was a wet and contorted wriggle in the sink, but now a nice dry entrance has been opened up in an old dig further back in the cliff. Soon we were sliding our way down the steeply inclined bedding entrance and popped out into a large chamber with a waterfall on the opposite wall.

Route finding is pretty trivial and we steeply scrambled our way down, joining the main stream – Andy taking a few photos on the way. We left the stream and clambered up into the “fossil” series admiring pretties and marvelling at the evidence of flooding. Conservation tape has been torn and shards of it hang from the roof in places, proving that the cave can fill up quite drastically on occasions, backing up from a choke in the streamway below. Today though, the stream was quite low after a relatively dry week and only light rain forecasted, so no real worries.

The fossil series starts off generally being a comfortable walking size, but degenerates a bit as a couple of chokes are passed. After a few more photo stops at the pretties we reached what was the terminal choke on my last visit. This has now been passed and I popped through to explore a bit further. The rest of the party weren’t keen to follow me, so I had a five minute explore onwards, leaving the way open, but low.

The return journey was punctuated with looking at a few side passages and taking more photos. Back at the streamway junction, we went downstream. Miles followed the stream to its muddy choked conclusion while we enjoyed the view of the big breakdown chamber. Finally it was time to climb back up the steep streamway and chambers back to the surface, emerging after a very pleasant 3 hour trip.

– Dan and Andy after

– Miles after

– Martin after

– back at the cars

A different route on less boggy ground was taken on the return, breaking direct out on to the Penderyn road and following that back to the cars; probably much easier going than the tussock bog. Thankfully the cars had not been broken into and we made our way to the Red Lion in Penderyn for a couple of really good pints of ale, but had to leave before the log fire really got going. A nice trip and I maintain that the cave probably was the most significant find in south Wales of the last decade – still more to find there too, I’m sure.

Underground photos and possibly even helmet camera video footage to follow.

Rhys

Offline DTM

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Re: Trip log book 2013
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2013, 07:43:35 am »
Good trip. Thanks for leading Rhys. Would have been even better if you shared some of the coffee you took down the cave with you! :kiss2:
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Offline Rhys

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Re: Trip log book 2013
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2013, 12:31:19 pm »
A few of Andy's underground photos. I'm sure he doesn't mind me sharing...

- rope climb in first big chamber

- streamway

- formation traverse

- lunch

- chamber where the streamway sinks

The full set is here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/60886818@N08/sets/72157632750140787/

 

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