Sunday, 20 April 2014

Long Walk to Ogof Ap Robert

It has been some time since our last visit to this cave, and during the trip it became apparent that the memory had faded somewhat. We set off on our walk from Trefil with an audience of about 1,000 orienteers who were partaking in an Easter event. We headed up the hill in a cool breeze and soon disappeared into low cloud. With the aid of GPS we were soon heading into the shakehole containing the cave and out of the cold wind. The entrance series was pretty much as I had remembered it, and soon we were in Toad Hall, where Jess and I spent some time taking photos while Mark went off to explore the passages radiating off the Chamber. We then regrouped and did a circuit of the Loop Route together before we headed into the crawl through the Fifth Boulder Choke under the floor of the chamber. Beyond this choke the cave changes character and all the passages have dried mud deposits, I had blocked most of this out from my previous visit and all was a surprise to me. We headed first to the southeast end of the cave and followed the Burma Road to end in the Land of Arawn, with its glutinous mud covering. We then headed back and headed up the northwest end of the system to the Land of Hafgan. Mark and Jess climbed up into a muddy tube to make their way to Hafgan, and Mark then returned to insist that I come through to take photos of the spectacular chamber. I fell for it hook line and sinker and soon I was looking down onto yet more mud covered boulders. On our return I commented to Mark that the joke was on him, as he had now travelled the muddy tube twice in his effort to dupe me. We finally headed through the Sixth and Seventh chokes to reach the pitch down into the Hans Bach stream. We were now heading out of time and headed back home.

Toad Hall - Ogof Ap Robert
Jessica in Toad Hall - Ogof Ap Robert

Toad Hall - Ogof Ap Robert
Jessica in Toad Hall - Ogof Ap Robert

Burma Road - Ogof Ap Robert
Jessica in the Burma Road - Ogof Ap Robert

Beyond the Fifth Choke - Ogof Ap Robert
Jessica Beyond the Fifth Choke - Ogof Ap Robert

Taking a quick detour to look at Pwll Pirs on our return journey we headed back to the van in light rain. We may return some time to explore below the ladder pitch and take photos in the Loop Route above Toad Hall.

Present : Mark Burkey, Jess Burkey and Brendan Marris

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