Spring Bank Holiday, Club Meet to North Wales.

The caves of North Wales in the Alyn valley are somewhat unique, and because of this are of particular interest, which overcomes their otherwise grotty nature. For much of its length the river Alyn sinks in its bed and forms an underground, phreatic network. The water was a bane to the local lead miners and about the turn of the century a drainage adit was driven from sea level which altered the underground drainage pattern of the area & made accessible the few caves so far explored. Unfortunately the caves are characterized by their muddy nature and their apparent ability to still flood up to the roof for long periods in times of wet weather.
On the Sunday after being thoroughly mucked up in Ogof Hesp Alyn, more easily known as O.H.A, the previous day (I hope this trip is being written up by someone else.) (No. Ed.) the remaining enthusiastic club members decided to have a lock at the second ? of the two caves in North vales.

So a party of Mike, Pete, Hugh, Andy, Bob & Bill had a look down Poachers Cave, known locally as Ogof or Herwheliwr, which was recently found & dug out by the N.P.C. but pirated and explored by the N.W.C.C. (They said it was on their patch!.) A tenuously designed, locked manhole cover revealed a pitch of about twelve feet into Dyers Adit, a short length of mined passage on a prominent vein. From the floor of this a short dig led to a phreatic network of muddy tubes, at first with calcited tree roots hanging eerily from the roof. This passage eventually opens to a fine active streamway, leading upstream to a large chamber & downstream to a series of grotty muddy tubes. It was here that respective members furtled about for varying lengths of time, depending on their enthusiasm. Finally the stream could be heard tantalizingly behind an impossible squeeze where Hugh tried without success to persuade me to make myself infamous, & then blamed me for his failure to do so.
In summary, an interesting cave, but possibly with not as much interest as the excellent draught Bass (Mothers Milk) in the nearby pub, where we spent so much of our time that weekend.

P. Llewellyn.

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