OUCC Proceedings 7 (1975)
Mestas de Ardisana Area
|OUCC Proceedings 7 Contents|
l00m east of the village of Mestas de Ardisana, the Rio Piedra Hita joins the Rio Riensena, 200m south from here the small stream which resurges from the Cueva de Llina Lleras, joins this tributary from the east. There are three separate cave entrances in the cliff, indications that the cave takes a considerable volume of water in flood conditions. These all lead to a small undecorated chamber containing a sump pool. A passage at right angles to the stream does not go anywhere. A few feet above and beyond the sump pool, a phreatic passage leads down to a larger static sump, probably at the same water level. Due to its large size - a tube approximately 2m in diameter - attempts were made to free-dive this sump. We were soon disappointed to discover that there were no air-spaces nor side passages, and that, after about 5m, the roof of the passage descended so as to be too awkward for further progress. There were no other side passages from the chamber.
The villagers of Mestas were very enthusiastic about this cave, and gladly provided two small boys as guides to lead us to it. We parked the car about 1km from the village; our guides set off along a gentle cart track. We expected an easy walk. However, the boys then started up the steeply sloping hillside - and up, and up, and up. It was soon apparent that we could only expect to find a fossil system at such a height above the valley floor. And so it was. An estimated 200m of beautifully decorated. passage, with any ways on blocked by fill. Rather a disappointment - but the formations were very fine, and so was the view from the entrance.