Category Archives: Cave


Cropton Cave

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 755892
Length: 4.5m
Altitude: 130m
Access: No known restrictions
Grade: I
Entertainment value: -I

Entrance lies in a small scar on the North side of the Cropton Bank Road. Small, uninspiring chamber full of rubbish.
Not one of the areas classic trips!.

The cave has always been known locally and used as a convenient rubbish tip.

Northern Caves Volume 5 (1974)

Bogg Hall Rising (Springhead)

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 709865
Altitude: 40m
Length: 200m
Depth: 20m
Access: Ravenswick Estate
Grade: IV
Entertainment value: V+

Warning: Bogg Hall is a very wet cave; wetsuits are essential, mask & neoprene hood useful. A small rise in water levels will sump The Drain. Descend in dry, settled weather only.  Despite its short length Bogg Hall is quite a serious undertaking.

Divers Entrance: Bogg Hall Rising is a large resurgence on the East bank of the River Dove consisting of two sumps which are not free diveable:
Sump I: A dive of 9 m in a roomy bedding 3 m wide and 1 m high surfacing in an air bell formed by a cross rift.
Sump II: A further dive of 9 m surfacing in the main Sump Chamber.
( The sumps may be dived as one by following the left wall although this is not lined)

“Oh my ears and whiskers” (Dry Entrance):
Probably the best and most sporting trip in Ryedale. Oil drum entrance with locked lid (key nailed to the tree nearest the lid, please replace after use) drops down into a small earthy chamber. At the South end a short blind, excavated crawl leads off. The way on is down a narrow, partially blasted rift in the floor. It should be stressed that the rift is very narrow and larger cavers may experience difficulties, particularly on the return. If an epic is to be avoided the rift should be rigged with a handline or, better a ladder belayed to a tree outside. The rift drops into the main Sump Chamber.

Care should be taken not to step back into the sump pool as the unwary may be washed down into the sumps!
Two passages which soon reunite lead from the Sump Chamber, the right hand passage takes the majority of the water and is best avoided except in times of low flow.
The more usual route is to follow the passage to the left. Follow this wet and gloomy passage past a junction on the right (which leads via the right hand passage back to the Sump Chamber) to arrive at a “dry” blockfall chamber. Straight ahead leads into a low, wet and confused area and is best avoided. The way on is to the right into an area with about 30 cm air space. The intrepid explorer is now confronted by one of the caves main obstacles: The Duck. The Duck consists of a submerged slab lying across the passage. Although there is air space above the slab, the best (and most entertaining) way to pass it is a short, 1m, free dive under it (mask useful). It is best tackled feet first and on ones back thus: Remove helmet and hold it under the slab with the right hand, insert legs under slab, place left arm under the slab and grab the far side of it, lie back, and raise legs, take a deep breath and pull yourself through with your left arm. It is possible that the first pull might not get you through, if this happens a shove with the right hand usually does the trick. Try not to surface too enthusiastically as you will crack your head on the low roof – not recommended. From this point things start to get sporting! Turn sharp left into a low airspace (10 cm – 15 cm) canal known as The Drain. This looks frighteningly narrow but it bells out below water. The Drain is best entered feet first on ones side, nose and mouth up in the roof. A helmet is something of an encumbrance here and is best held out in front. Use the lower arm to propel oneself along the passage, blowing water out of your mouth as you progress (the return journey is easier as you are borne along by the water). This is not a place to panic – stay cool, lie back and enjoy the experience. After 10 m of very aqueous progress a small chamber provides some respite, turn right here up another canal about 5 m long. At the end of this section turn left to emerge in the River Passage, to date unique for the area. The River Passage is 1 m – 2 m high and 3 m – 5 m wide; an impressive spot. Of interest are fossils partially washed out from the walls (CARE). Good going for about 60 m passes fallen blocks and an oxbow to arrive at the terminal sump: The Font. An unusual feature of The Font is its fauna – a colony of Lampreys. The Font Chamber is quite a large rift, 15 m long, 6 m wide and 4 m high. The aven in the roof has been scaled and was found to pinch out. Water wells up from the centre of the lake from a vertical rift. This has been dived, past a ledge at – 6 m to a depth of about – 17 m. As yet no definite conclusion has been reached.

The Rift: Either an 8 m ladder, spreader and sling or handline, belayed to tree at entrance (optional)

Sump 1 was passed by Shackleton and Griffiths of the C.D.G. in 1981.
On 31-10-1981 Richard Wilsdon and Neil Hanan, passed Sump 2 and explored the cave to the Font.
S.C.C. dug the dry entrance in early 1998, the first “dry cavers” reaching the Font on 12-2-98.

bh mc-bog

Memoirs of a Moldywarp (2008)
Bogg Hall Rising

SCC Minutes 01/02/1998



SCC Minutes 01/02/1998


Birk Bank Fissures (Caydale Hole / Dog Rescue Fissure / Shelobs Lair)

Moorland Caver (2003)
NGR: SE 555868
Altitude: 185m
Access: No known restrictions
Grade: II
Entertainment Value: II

Two slip rifts on the South side of Caydale.

(A.k.a Birk Bank Fissure, Dog Rescue Fissure)
Length: 27m
Depth: 10.5m

Two entrances at foot of the main scar. Climb down in rifts into wider rift chamber.
The fissure was discovered during 1952 when a dog fell down it. The dog was dug out by J.N. Grayson and local Quarrymen, the whole operation taking five days. Apart from the dog, the fissure also yielded archaeological / human remains. Williams, in “Ampleforth Country”, notes Caydale Hole in his list of eleven windypits known to Ampleforth Students; presumably this is one and the same hole. Despite the fact that the hole was mentioned in “Ampleforth Country” it effectively remained lost for a number of years until rediscovered by the M.S.G. in February 1981.

Length: 17m
Depth: 3.5m

Opposite Caydale Hole in South face of slumped block below the main scar.
Two entrances with narrow rift in between. In West entrance is a sloping passage leading to a small chamber.

Discovered by the M.S.G. at the same time as Caydale Hole (see above) was rediscovered.



Old Fat And Past It Pot (OFAPI)

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR:SE 86908505
Length: 80m
Depth: 22m
Access: Obtain key from the Forestry Commission
Grade: III
Entertainment value: III

Obvious gated entrance in quarry floor circa 1m long and 0.4m wide. Entrance Pitch is 9m to ledge and is best rigged from the gate framework. The Second Pitch of 6m follows immediately from the first and can be rigged from an in situ hanger. Prior to descending this pitch it is advisable to “garden” the pitch head of potential missiles. The pitch lands in a large rift up to 3.6m wide and 15m high continuing in both directions. The section of left continues as big passage for circa 30m. This section of passage is rather spectacular, if somewhat unusual for a windypit. A pit has to be negotiated, followed by a small mud slope, which ends at a blank wall. To the right of the foot of the pitch are a series of unstable boulder ruckles. Climb up the choke and along the top until a 2m drop is reached landing in a small under cut “chamber”. From the chamber continue along the rift. This section is very narrow and a slip here could lead to a difficult and protracted rescue. At the end of the narrows a wedged block is reached, climb down beyond the block into a large continuation of the rift. A further choke is soon reached, the way on being through a small hole down to the left. Beyond the choke the rift ends in a blank wall.

Entrance: 9m ladder, short belay to car tow hitch or scaffold pole over the entrance
2nd Pitch: 6m ladder, spreader and crab to in situ hanger (Installed 1997).

The entrance was first noted by S.C.C. members in summer 1995. However no work was done until 1997 when the entrance was enlarged and the windypit explored. O.F.A.P.I. was surveyed by an M.S.G. team who had considerable difficulty entering the hole (the entrance had to be further enlarged) giving rise to the name “Old, fat and past it”!



Memoirs of a Moldywarp (2008)

Vista Windypit

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 507859
Altitude: 310m
Length: 17m
Depth: 11m
Access: No known restrictions.
Grade: II
Entertainment value: II+

Extremely difficult to find, located 8m down the cliff under spur, half way between Hillfort and Boltby Quarry.
Narrow, rift-like entrance running parallel to escarpment. Initially sideways
walking until a small chamber is reached. From the chamber the explorer is reduced to crawling in the floor of the rift. A short crawl leads to an excavated squeeze dropping down into a second small chamber. A circa 5m climb lands in a third small chamber.
The obvious way on down a rubble slope leads to the boulder floored Main Chamber. At the southern end of the Main Chamber a narrow rift can be followed to a bend where it soon becomes too tight. Small scale digging at the opposite, northern end of the chamber has revealed various narrow rifts which have yet to be entered (further digging needed).

Discovered and explored by S.C.C. between December 1998 and January 1999.


Vista Pot

Spider Windypit

Moorland Caver (2003)
NGR: SE 508838
Altitude: 360m
Length: 14m
Depth: 11 m
Access: No known restrictions
Grade: II
Entertainment value: II+

Obvious hole surrounded by a substantial wooden fence.
1 m descent down onto a boulder bridge Climb down the side of the bridge, back under it and into the main rift. The main rift is about 6 m long and is best traversed halfway up. At the foot of the climb down into the rift a crawl leads off and ultimately chokes. An 8 m ladder is useful for the return out of the rift.

Entrance/main rift: 8m ladder useful, belay to fence (sling / spreader).

Discovered by a group of walkers who were following along the footpath when one rather rotund lady suddenly disappeared up to her waist and stuck fast in what is now the entrance.
First explored by E. and D. Shield (M.S.G) in 1998.

Spider Windypit

Memoirs of a Moldywarp (2008)


Manor Vale

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 694868
Altitude: 70m
Access: Kirbymoorside Council.

Three small caves on either side of Kirbymoorside Council Yard.

1. Length: 4.5m
Grade I
Large walled up entrance in cliff on West side of valley.
Remove loose top blocks to gain access to a short, roomy passage ending in a bad collapse.

1a. Length: 3.5m
Grade I
To the left of 1, a small hole turns to the right and ends in the middle of a bad collapse with a vocal link to 1.

2. Length: 30m
Grade I
Entertainment Value II
In cliff face on East side of valley, behind the Scout Hut.
Entrance is half filled with rubbish (care). Sliding down over rubbish pile gains lovely roomy passage lowering to crawl into high aven. Low bedding beyond was restricted by calcite overlying an earth floor. A small channel has been chipped through the calcite to reveal a short continuation.

Buckland – Reliquiae Diluvianae (1823)
Buckland - Manor Vale
Buckland - Manor Vale2
Buckland - Manor Vale3

Northern Caves Volume 5 (1974)

Moldywarps Speleological Group – Journal 8 (1976)

T’une Mouth (Youen Mouth / The Gob)

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 707867
Altitude: 50m
Length: 9m
Access: Ravenswick Estate
Grade: I
Entertainment Value: II+ (if den is occupied)

Entrance in West cliff 3.5m above the normally dry river Dove. Passage lowers to a crawl and is choked after a small aven.
This is currently being used as an animal den and a visit can be a trouser soiling experience.

Northern Caves Volume 5 (1974)

Moldywarps Speleological Group – Journal 8 (1976)

Lingmoor Cave

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 710878
Alt: 70m
Access: Ravenswick Estate
Grade: I
Entertainment Value: I

Wide walled up entrance at the base of a cliff 180m upstream from bridge and 20m down from Dowson’s pot.
Crawl on mud floor in bedding plane to small chamber with slumped block. Squeezing under block gains small passage ending in abandoned dig.
Replace blocks back in entrance wall after use.

Pennine Underground (1965)

Northern Caves Volume 5 (1974)

Moldywarps Speleological Group – Journal 8 (1976)

Yoadwath Cave

Moorland Caver (2003)

NGR: SE 705877
Length: 6 m
Access: Ravenswick Estate
Grade: I
Entertainment value: I

From the “car park” by the trout farm follow an indistinct path up the hillside until a low crag is reached, the obvious entrance lies in the South end of the cliff.

The hole originally consisted of a short rock shelter consisting of a single chamber (now full of dig spoil). A short crawl leads to a blank wall. To the left a squeeze leads into a rather dangerous choked continuation with no obvious way on.

The hole has been known locally for a number of years, the extension was dug by a joint S.C.C. / A.C.C. team between January and February 1999.
The boulder choke is notable as it tried to eat Andy Brennan, much to everyone’s amusement.

Pennine Underground (1965)