The Master Cave starts as an impressive 5 metre high by 4 metre wide streamway with a shallow arched roof. Continuing upstream from FALL POT a small inlet on the right is the start of WOODHOUSE WAY

The master cave continues as a high rift with several boulder obstacles to where the way narrows and a series of deep pools and small chutes are encountered. cameraEventually more breakdown is reached and the passage swings left beneath the large collapse of STAKE POT

The best route through the boulders is to follow the north wall (left facing upstream) of the passage through the choke. The High Level Route crosses over the Master Cave at this point and it can be gained by a series of climbs up a rocky slope on the right.

cameraMain Drain in high flow conditions! Take care!

On up the Master Cave from STAKE POT the passage continues as a wide flat roofed passage with many straws on the roof. Eventually the roof lifts and there are some fine formations. The streamway is now 3 meters wide and some 15 meters high in places. A huge slab jammed across the passage is passed and shortly after this the roof is no longer visible. This is the point where the two holes of Scylla and Charybdis descend from the High Level route.over 20 meters above. After about 270 metres a large passage enters from the right up in the wall. An easy climb up enters Breakdown Passage which although large initially, being some 10 meters wide by 5 meters high, gradually closes down with piles of collapsed blocks littering the floor.The way on at the eastern end is down a slot and through unstable boulders back to the streamway near the Oxbow Corner boulder choke (see below). Thus it forms an old oxbow to the Main Drain. The passage itself also contains a 20 metre oxbow (The Wormery) on the north side of the passage at its western end.

Beyond the entrance to this passage the Master Cave can be followed across a deep pool and up a water chute to a section where the roof gets lower and boulders start to make up the roof. Just beyond the point where Breakdown Passage re-enters the main stream is a climb up on the left through boulders in to the High Level above. The streamway continues through a complex boulder choke to Oxbow Corner. Some of the route involves crawling in water and these sections can be cut off in high water conditions. Take care.

In the streamway upstream of Oxbow Corner there is a section of stooping passage passing the entrance to Maracaibo on the left. Beyond here the passage enlarges at a breakdown chamber with a high level route through muddy passages back to Oxbow Corner. The only way on upstream is at stream level and is through low wet passages. A route has been forced in drought conditions to a point beneath Lower Snail Cavern, where a climb up through boulders joins with the HIGH LEVEL ROUTE at Snail Cavern. The streamway route continues with some more low wet sections to EUREKA JUNCTION.

WARNING - This route between the start of Oxbow Corner boulder choke and Lower Snail Cavern passes through very unstable boulder chokes and sumps off completely in all but the driest conditions. The way on seems to be blocked at the time of writing.

Back at OXBOW CORNER a steep slope up boulders leads up to the end of MONTAGU EAST PASSAGE and into OAKES' CAVERN, THE MINARETS and the high level route to Stop Pot. A low passage leading upwards to the right is the Minarets Bypass which joins the HIGH LEVEL ROUTE at Cornes' Cavern.Another route leads up a climb against the north wall to a muddy passage linking to Maracaibo and a confusing and unstable route through boulders back down to the Main Drain and the breakdown chamber mentioned above.

Stake Pot Inlets

This series of passages is entered at the upstream end of the Stake Pot boulder choke and starts as a narrow stream passage. It leads to the bottom of the Magic Roundabout Series and also links to the STAKE POT SERIES. Following the twisting inlet for about 30m leads to a connection with the Stake Pot Series via a shelf on the right. Climbing onto the shelf leads soon to some boulders, through these a steep muddy slope up to the right leads to a chain and short fixed ladder up through a hole into the UPPER LEVEL beside Bob's Boss. Turning left at the bottom of the muddy slope leads via several obstacles to the bottom of several avens one of which is the Arson Shaft. The 40 metre Arson shaft leads after another 15 metre pitch up into the top of the MAGIC ROUNDABOUT SERIES and Pristine Way. Just before entering the Avens there is a small passage on the right which joins to the lower end of Barlick New Road streamway. Crossing the steam and negotiating boulders and slopes reaches a squeeze between the left wall and a large boulder. Forward reaches a mud slope down to the boulders near the bottom of the Stake Pot Boulder slope near the original stream passage.

R.R.C.P.C. 2002