OUCC Proceedings 6 (1974)
Smaller Caves explored
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Grid. Ref. 5038 9757
Small extensions, which included some fine decorations and rim-stone pools, were made beyond the Cox Duck (ref. Trans CRG. 13(1) pp 18-19). A free climb up to the roof in the new terminal chamber produced no new route on. A maze of sandy chambers and tubes led off from the north of Boulder Chamber, all returning eventually to the Floodway. Survey
Grid Ref. 5073 9753
This cave lies behind the ridge on the northern side of the valley leading to the Ojo del Rio. large groupings of sardine tins confirmed reports that the cave, which is of archeological interest, had already been visited by Spanish cavers. The most striking feature of this cave was a carefully constructed flight of steps, perhaps of some antiquity, in the entrance chamber. This led up to the head of a 40 metre pitch. At the bottom was a large muddy chamber, with a high roof. Several passages meander off from various points in this chamber, all of them fully investigated and going nowhere.
Almost on the last day of the expedition, the village lads took us on a guided tour of the various tiny crevices we had overlooked in the valley. After several miserable holes above Bolugo, in one of which Jon nearly ended his days, the tour led along the steeply sloping hillside beneath the campsite, between Bolugo and Boriza. In a little clump of trees (bosque) was a most unexpected opening in the ground, a miniature ravine about 5 metres deep and 10 - 20 metres long. A little stream ran into boulders, but upstream the cave was open. After a short distance the small streamway became a wet canal crawl, but it soon enlarged again. A further low section a tight duck brought exploration to a halt. Without wetsuits, and at this stage in the expedition, the urge to push on was notably absent. Besides, the duck looked a bit desperate on carbide
The streamway above the Boriza cliff became the special preserve of Mik
Allen, whose objective was to dig his way into the probable phreatic maze
beneath the floodway. He had little success, but gained much exercise. One hole
did produce about 15 metres of stream passage for a while, but in common with
others which were uncovered, had an unfortunate tendency to collapse. Peter
Urben took advantage of these new holes 'vadose rather than phreatic' to vary
his amusing water tracing experiments.
Show cave trips were made into Callau Roviera and the Pozo de Fresno with several villagers and the members of another English expedition. Rotella and its shake holes, and the ridge north of the Cortines road behind the village, were investigated, revealing nothing of any real interest. Barro beach received its fair share of speleologists, who could always justify their presence by investigating the famous 'Barro beach sump'.