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MAY 10, 2003

SRINGVALE SOUTH CAVE


Position: WGS84 - 18 22' 29.4" N, 77 45' 47.9" W, Alt 140 m

Field notes: R. S. STEWART

Cavers: R. S. Stewart, M. Taylor, I. C. Conolley

This cave is located on the south side of the road, opposite the pumping station, in Springvale. On our drive back from Chatworth, late in the day, it was spotted by Ivor Conolley as we drove by. Amazingly, we'd driven by the small, upper entrance many times before and hadn't noticed the opening in the roadside brush. The JU position has the entrance located south of the road in the bottomland and I'd always assumed that that is where it was. We were intending to check all the Springvale caves eventually and had been leaving it until then.

The visible part of the cave consists of one medium sized chamber with two openings. The obvious opening is on the north side of the chamber, looking out onto the road, and is about 1 metre wide by 2 high. A drop of several metres would put one directly in the large pool that occupies most of the chamber. If one walks around to the west side of the hill in which the cave is found, a second larger entrance is reached. Here, a muddy slope leads into the water.

A careful look from both entrances showed the cave to appear to be limited to the one chamber, at least above water, and since it was late in the day and we had already explored Barrow's and Fitzie's Fissures, both involving serious verticals, we decided against taking the swim into the pool to look for a way on. This swim should be done next expedition.

This cave is obviously associated with the river that serves the pumping station. It is suspected that the cave extends further beneath the waters of the pool. It would be an interesting to exercise to plumb the depths to see if any openings might be found. Next time...

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