SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR NEWSLETTER OF THE TASMANIAN CAVERNEERING CLUB PAGE 1 Newsletter Annual Subscription $10.00, Single copies $1, Non-members $2 -00 PRESIDENT / QUARTERMASTER: Trevor Wailes 47 Waterworks Road, Dynnyrne, Tas 7005. SECRETARY : Martyn Carnes 8A Lambert. Avenue, Sandy Bay 7005. TREASURER: Chris Davies C/412 Huon Road, South Hobart, Tas 7000. EDITOR / TYPIST: Stuart Nicholas 7 Rupert Avenue, New Town, Tas 7008 LIFE BEGINS AT 40, BUT WHAT ABOUT CAVING?? You may or may not have noticed (look at the top of the page Neddy) that this year sees the 40th anniversary of the Tasmanian Caverneering Club. As the oldest "official" caving club in Australia, this is a record of which we can be justly proud, particularly considering the rather bizarre nature of caverneering / caving / potholing / speleology! Despite, or because of, all the stirring and much throwing of soft brown material, our club can be proud of its achievements over the years needless to say depth records and so on do not come easily at any time, but living in the appropriate area does make them somewhat easier to achieve. That fact is often overlooked when comparisons are made between activities of cavers here and "on the mainland". The Tasmanian Caverneering Club can no doubt look forward to many years yet of inspiring and bpontaneous, if occasionally rebellious, underground activity. No area is ever fully explored, no cave ever pushed to the limit. New technology, especially in rope manufacture and surveying systems will make further exploration easier, or even just possible, as occured during the early 1970's with the advent of 1 SRT. Roll on anti-gravity suits........... Stuart Nicholas Editor SPELEO SPIEL TIME FOR A CHANGE............... After more years than I care to remember of pushing pens, bottles of Liquid Paper and more lately, a computer keyboard, I have decided to give the editing of this fine rag to some other deserving person, at least for a while. Renewed interest in things electronic have spurred me to enrol in a night study course that will leave no time to do things such as compose this mighty mag. Therefore it is with genuine sadness that I say this is the last regular Speleo Spiel I will produce for a year or two or three maybe an occasional one will find its way through the word processor, but very few. The plan is to share the thing
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 2 around so it will be produced by all and sundry be warned, it will probably be better! Thank you one and all for your support and encouragement, to say nothing of the occasional kick in the pants when I became a little slack! May SPELEO SPIEL continue to be one of Australia's better caving magazines. ...... On the same subject, meetings will no longer be held at 7 Rupert Avenue owing to ----my not being there most nights, and studying on the others. This is also a fairly major change for TCC as meets have happened at Rupert Avenue for quite a number of years. As from the February 19 "committee meeting", the meets will occur at Martyn Carnes' and Stefan Eberhard's flat at 8A Lambert Avenue, Sandy Bay don't forget it! For the uninformed, this club meets on the FIRST and THIRD Wednesday's of each month, now at the venue above. Stuart Nicholas editor SPELEO SPIEL NOTICE OF 1986 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING As always the AGM will be held on the last Wednesday of March, this year Wednesday March 26 at 8A Lambert Avenue, Sandy Bay, starting 8 pm. All committee positions -will be declared vacant and must be filled by election. Reports of office bearers are to be presented, and the fees set for the next financial year. BE THERE! DEEPEST CAVES LIST JANUARY 1986 The last deepest list published in this magazine was over a year ago in Speleo Spiel 201. The number of caves exceeding 100 metres depth has since increased to a total of 42. For the first time on the list, there is a cave from Plt Weld, an area where no deep caves were previously known. Tasmania currently boasts Australia's twenty deepest caves, with Eagles Nest Cave system (174 metres) in NSW the deepest known on the mainland. Depths are given in metres and the letters that follow indicate the particular cave area: MA Mt Anne, JF Junee / Florentine, MW Mount Weld, IB Ida Bay, MC Mole Creek. For multi-entrance systems the first name given is the highest entrance, with additional entrances shown in brackets in order of decreasing depth. Accompanying the list in Speleo Spiel 201 were some notes concerning several of the depths quoted, and most of these comments are relevant to this list. Some additional notes are also provided. 1 Anne-A-Kananda 373 MA 2 Ice Tube 3 54 JF (Slaughterhouse Pot, Pendant Pot, Growling Swallet) 3 Khazad-dum (Dwarrowdelf) 323 JF 4 Serendipity 282 J F 5 Cauldron Pot 263 J F
SPELEO SPIEL JAN-FEB 1986 NOTES : NO. 213 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY Owl Pot Tassy Pot Arrakis Mini Martin (Skyhook Pot, Exit Cave) Milk Run Sesame Flick Mints Hole Midnight Hole (Mystery Creek Cave) Porcupine PO t The Chairman Cyclops Big Tree Pot Peanut Brittle Pot Udensala Lost PO t Top Hole (April Fools Entrance, Croesus Cave) Three Falls Cave Kellar Cellar Niagara Pot Threefortyone Satans Lair Rift Cave Victory 75 Warhol Go rmenghas t Little Grunt Chicken Bone Pot Revelation Cave Thun Junction Cave Col-In-Cavern Hobbi t Hole Herberts Pot Yodellers Pot Bone Pit Rescue Pot Splash Pot Devils Pot System YEAR 244 2 38 235 220 208 207 2 04 203 202 197 192 l89 186 181 175 174 l58 155 149 l48 139 130 130 130 l28 l28 125 125 120 119 1 l8 1 l6 115 1 l3 107 l06 105 PAGE 3 9 Mini Martin. A survey (Speleo Spiel 208) has shown a depth of 220 metres from Mini Martin entrance to stream level below the shafts. Presumably some height is lost between this point and the Exit Cave outflow entrance, giving an actual depth slightly greater than listed. 21 Croesus Cave. This cave has been omitted from previous lists. The depth figure is from an overland survey between the entrances. This survey was done many years ago but only recently came to notice. 28 Victory 75. Omitted by error from list in Speleo Spiel 201. 31 Little Grunt. Survey in Speleo Spiel 197, additional depth estimated following later exploration. 38 Yodellers Pot. Depth based on sketch survey in Speleo Spiel 201.
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 4 41 Splash Pot. A recent trip added an extra eight metres to the previous surveyed depth. Rolan Eberhard IB-38: MILK RUN ACCESS, PITCHES AND RIGGING DETAILS (a) ACCESS: Milk Run is in the Mini Martin / Big Tree Pot area at Ida Bay. Access may be gained by driving through Benders Quarry at Lune River, and parking at the top after following the left hand side bench roads. Top of the quarry is actually the saddle between Lune Sugarloaf and Marble Hill, cars being usually left on the Marble Hill side of saddle, or driven up the road which rises up the eastern side of the hill from the saddle. PERMISSION should always be obtained from Benders Quarry manager beforehand, whether driving through or walking up. The manager is Lindsay Rhodes, on the phone at the quarry (983136) or at home (983127) and lives in a cream-yellow weatherboard house last on the right before the railway line as you drive south. Permission is usually forthcoming with no problems, but as a courtesy and to keep up the rapport between us this remains essential, besides which they blast at odd times during weekends. From the saddle walk along Roy Skinner's "Exit" track, from the end of a cutting grass covered bulldozer track. Descending, you pass a yellow taped track near a ferny gully, that branches off right to "National Gallery" (IB-47) and others. Keep on going! After half an hour or less from the quarry you walk over an obvious limestone knoll about 4 to 5 metres high. (From here you can head uphill, north to Chicken Bone Pot etc.) One hundred to 150 metres past the knoll, an obvious gully is crossed with a normally dry gravelly creek bed. Rising up the bank from this gully along the Exit track another 20 to 25 metres the new Porritt / Clarke red taped track is found branching right. This leads directly to Big Tree Pot (IB-9) about 10 to 15 minutes from the Exit track and hence onto IB-33, 34, 32 and Mini Martin (IB-8). About five minutes walk along this red track is a branch track flagged with yellow tape on a sassafras beside a manfern at the base of a small cliffy outcrop. Ten metres up this yellow trmk at the top of a small cliff is Coffee Pot (IB-35) and from here the track continues left to IB-37 (still going) and then on to Milk Run (IB-38) about five minutes from Coffee Pot. Continuing south from Milk Run, track runs into the impressive IB-7 rift. Also in the region of IB-38 is IB-36 and Shell Hole (IB-49). (b) PITCHES AND RIGGING DETAILS This cave was initially explored during April, May and June 1985 by Arthur Clarke, Tom Porritt and members of VSA (Daryl Carr, Lou Williams, Phi1 Hutcheson, Malcolm Frankhauser and Ken Hosking) Pitch 1 PINT BOTTLE: 41 metres Two metre tape over rotten log above hole; also possible wire trace around suspect in situ outcrop on RHS. Five metre tape back to tree on LHS of pitch entrance. In order to hang free down the pitch, rope should be about 200mm out from number tag. Pitch 2 to 4 THE CHURNS Pitch 2: 6 metres
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR Two metre tape around rock pinnacle. Pitch 3: 4 metres Quarter inch bolt on left hand side wall. Pitch 4: 4 metres PAGE 5 Y shape rig. Bridge up over pitch. (a) Chock to fit 15 20 mm crack right hand side wall. (b) 1.5 to 2 metre tape around suspect column LHS wall (bridge up high to reach). (c) 3 metre tape joins two together. Pitch 5 CHEESES: 26 metres 318 inch stainless steel bolt. Hang rope 0.7m below bolt on a tape (protected tape). Bolt on left hand side of fissure approach 2.5m out and above the pitch. Nine metre tie back to previous pitch, or 5m to stal on LH wall half way down previous pitch. Pitch 6 THE SEPARATOR: 49 metres Stainless steel bolt. Hang rope 1 metre below bolt. Six metre tie back to 2m tape around dicey chock in fissure in roof; further 3m tie back to a 2.5m tape around large jug on opposite wall at floor level. 3/8 bolt on RBS wall above pitch. Pitch 7(a) and 8(a) THE CURDS To right hand side from base of The Separator past side passage to aven. Pitch 7(a): 12 metres Twelve metre handline tied around rock projection on right hand wall. Pitch 8(a): 35 metre with ledge 12 metre down Rig two metre wire trace over decayed formation at left hand side above pitch. 1.5m tape around jug on right hand side (lm back and 0.3m above lip). This could possibly be re-rigged by climbing further out into the rift. Pitch 7(b) and 8(b) THE CREAM To left hand side from the base of The Separator via serpentine fissure. Pitch 7(b) : 8 metres Optional handline tied around chock in floor. Pitch 8(b): approx. 30 metres Petzl bolt on left hand side wall (could be tidied up with hammer). Protector needed at bolt. Two metre tie back to a 2m tape on rock projection on RHS. Two metre further tieback to another 2m tape around rock projection on floor or to handline from previous pitch if used. Pitch requires further protector 8m down. The Curds and The Cream both lead to a horizotal passage referred to as The Way which extends to another aven at one end and a draughting stream passage in a fissure at the other end. This could be pushed further.
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 ..AN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 6 Total depth: 208 metres. Passage length: 445 metres plus. Ar thur Clarke IDA BAY IB-7 AND SURROUNDS JUNE 10, 1985 PARTY: Tom Porritt, Petrina Quinn and Steve Summers. Followed red track to IB-7 gully crossing and left packs. A quick look at entrances IB-9, IB-33, IB-8, IB-34 and IB-32 and then return to pick up packs. Walked up the gully to IB-7 and had some food, played with gear and finally took a ladder down into the cave. Six metre pitch could almost be climbed with a handline. From bottom of the pitch, the left side (west) passage was descended to the top of a 10 metre drop which did not look too promising. The fissure was very narrow above the drop and floored with stream cobbles and mud. The stream decreased in size as it travelled the forty metres of passage. Some of the stream flowed into a small passage but was too narrow to follow after two metres. Water and rocks could be heard to drop a metre or two. Some rocks were removed from the floor but more effort is needed to give possible access to more cave. A large passage that joined near the dig was followed up and proved to be the passage seen above the ladder. The passage on the other side (east) of the ladder was descended to a 2 metre chamber. A narrow fissure led down to the base of an aven. Water went down a tight passage which would be uncomfortable if possible to follow. A cairn was built at the bottom of the aven. Back to the ladder then on past the bottom of the water fall to a 3m climb up to a muddy little chamber. Then out to light rain! Returned partway down the IB-7 gully to un-numbered cave (now IB-49) on eastern (northern) side of gully. Small cave with 5m ladder pitch to 12 metre sloping floor. Many snail shells and one small skeleton on floor. Also decayed flowstone. Returned via yellow track past IB-38, IB-37, IB-35 and on to the red track and home. Tom Porritt NOTE: The editor of this magazine takes no responsibility for the following article by Stephen Bunton! "WRATH OF THE PORCUPINE" PORCUPINE POT: 24 November, 1985. PARTY: Stefan Eberhard, Nick Hume, Trevor Walles and Steve Bunton
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 7 I like caving in Tasmania the natives are so friendly, they take you caving, they laugh at your jokes, they laugh at your attempts to go caving, they think you're a joke. This trip started with overtones of "Have we got a cave for you!!" ...... just two weeks old, two hundred metres deep, over a kilometre long and ...... "You'll love it!!" I understood one bit had to be chipped out. I later found it stuck between my ribs. Another bit needed blasting out. I found that bit easy. Another bit is just terrible and if the locals hadn't helped me it would have needed cementing in ....... Floyd Collins and Audience. What can you say about 6am starts, Stefan's driving, the ANM gate ritual, The Florentine Valley Road, getting trogged up in the sun before slithering down the worst entrance section ever. Virginal caves are always tight Hindu Proverb. What can you say about TCC's nicotine addiction except that beyond survey stations smokos became the only landmarks of the trip. The watercrawl wasn't the best. The second streamway was great big stuff, "Rivals Exit". Only the fact that it had already been explored detracted from the experience. We began surveying in the very well decorated chamber full of Aragonite crystals etc., at the very upstream end of the big stream. This section ought to be called Lindy Chamberlain's Palace because its cold, heartless and well and truly inside (Ed's note: that's a bit behind the times now......). Trev found a growth that looked "like brains". I found a good looking dong. Trev thought it had brains "A donger with brains". We surveyed out only to overtake Stefan in the stream passage without knowing it. There's 50 metres of unsurveyed passage up there somewhere thanks to his enthusiasm. We surveyed down to the junction at the end of the water crawl. The cave mud was incredibly slippery over a few boulder chokes. Virginal cave is always slippery, due to inexperience they overdo the vaseline Hindu Proverb. Trev got to hate the Suunto instruments whilst surveying the watercrawl. Stefan kept his usual immaculate survey notes. Nick hauled all the junk out of the cave in a pack. Luckily I was on the other end of a 50 metre survey tape because at this stage I'd split the bum out of my long-johns and speedos. The arse was already missing from Martyn's borrowed overalls. Going caving in a complete set of borrowed caving gear is great fun. Stuart's helmet was too big, his prusik rig a maladjust and Nick's harness was meant for a nun judging on how tightly it clamps your legs together. Never take a gift horse to underground water. At one stage Stefan nearly ended up with my sphincter around his neck. Failure to proceed against gravity on one bottleneck had it open and winking, as stated it was unimpeded, and a severe arm pump-out almost saw me fall from grace. I know why they take me caving ....... It makes them feel superior feeds their ego's. They probably enjoy it I know I do! As for Porcupine Pot what more can be said?. STEPHEN BUNTOE MOLE CREEK AREA: Weekend of 14+15 December, 1985 Saturday Morning PARTY: Mark Stanford, Gary Johnston, Rik Tunney, David Rasch, Andrew, We'd heard that Shish Kebab was a well decorated cave so as we had a quite a few
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 ;AN-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 8 beginners along for the trip to Kubla on Sunday, it seemed a good opportunity to have a look at this small cave. It proved to be a reasonably interesting couple of hours spent poking around and taking some photos of helectites and aragonite crystals. Saturday Afternoon CROESUS PARTY: Mark, Gary, Janine, Andrew, David, Dierdre Maynard a1 This trip was designed as another attempt to get some good streamway photos. The novices also got a look at one of the prettiest caves in Tasmania. Surprisingly, after all the rain the water level was the same as always. Andrew Briggs informed me that it rarely changes. Does anyone know why? Sunday KUBLA KHAN PARTY: Same as yesterday plus Ian Atkinson. We'd been hoping to get some photos of Kubla in flood with all the pools full, but unfortunately the water level wasn't as high as we'd hoped. It was however certainly above base level. Andrew and Jeanine stayed in the upper sections and the rest of us planned a through trip, with a bit of photography on the way. The top section of the Pleasure Dome was full of water and hopefully a few good photos will come out of it. Unfortunately the water hadn't yet worked its way down through all the gours. Somebody has put a small breach in the top gour so that the water runs out and down the front of the flow stone. Whether this was intentionally done is hard to say, although it's difficult to imagine it being done by accident. We exited via the streamway which was running quite high and made for a fun, sporting end to the trip. Janine McKinnon ARRAKIS CAVE, MT WELD area 3 January, 1986 This system was only recently rediscovered and explored by SCS to a depth of 236 metres. From the end of the road the cave can be reached in just under 2 hours walking. At the lower rim of the large doline entrance there is a bolt for belaying an 8 metre drop, however this can be bypassed via a climb down a rift on the left hand side beneath the natural arch. A steep mud slope leads directly onto the 70 metre pitch where considerable time was spent swinging back and forth on the rope before managing to locate the bolt placed by Nick on a previous trip. It is situated on a ledge some 3 metres below the lip, on the far right hand side of the shaft when facing into the cave. From the bolt the rope hangs down a small rift carrying a trickle of water and 5 metres down I placed a sidepull via a 2 metre sling looped over a flake on the RHS.
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAS-FEB 1986 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR PAGE 9 Approximately 12 metres further down I hammered in a short leeper piton to act as another sidepull. With some apprehension regarding the security of the rigging and the 8.5mm rope, I continued to the bottom of this fine shaft. The 3 metre pitch immediately following leads over a dangerous boulder on the LHS. Seven metres of rope is required, belayed from a /l7 hex and a #4 Chouinard stopper, although a size 1 2 1/2 Friend would be better suited to the crack. This pitch could probably be free climbed, on the RHS, if necessary. The final 10 metre pitch requires 15 metres of rope belayed from a rather dubious bolt on the RHS. Additional anchor points included a sling through an eyehole and a "tied-off" short lost arrow piton on the LHS. The protector normally required at the lip could be dispensed with via a sling sidepull from an eyehole on the RHS. It was almost a novelty being able to detect a glimmer of daylight at the base of the pitch, whilst supposedly being some 220 metres underground. The recent excessive precipitation meant that the bottom of the cave was sumped, instead of the boulder choke reported previously. Upstream proceeds as a tall canyon with occasional formation including straws, flowstone and gypsum crystals. Further on the passage degenerates into narrow awkward rift and squeezes. I spent a while reclining on the substrate observing the cave fauna, or lack thereof, before an uneventful exit. From car back to car the trip took 12 hours. Stefan Eberhard N.E. RIDGE of MT ANNE ANNE-A-KANANDA etc. January 9-12, 1986. PARTY: Rolf Adams, Kier Vaughan-Taylor, Gregg ? (all from SUSS), Jeff Watson, Matthew Jac We left for Mt Anne on the Thursday and after much difficulty located the "bombardier" track and arrived at the Anne-A-Kananda doline the following day. It had been raining for the past 24 hours, so there was plenty of water showering down the overhang and plenty of sucking mud on the slope entering the doline. That afternoon and evening we spent exploring our place of residence and crawling into the entrance of the very draughty A-A-K. This little poke about sparked my enthusiasm for the following days. On Saturday Rolf and Matthew went looking for caves. The rest of us'decided to have a look at Kellars Cellar. After a million cups of coffee we set off. Getting there was easy enough and rigging the ropes didn't take long. One by one we disappeared down the pitch.. ..... I didn't particularly appreciate the abseil down. I didn't like being so far from the walls as I had never been in situation where I've been dangling in space on a bit of rope. Feeding the rope and bouncing madly up and down on it didn't appeal to me either but it started feeding nicely on the last thirty metres and I enjoyed that! Some tape was attached for the last ten metres. I was pleased to be on the ground again the others started to head out shortly after my arrival. Looking about, Kier and I smashed and scattered bones of poor unfortunates who didn't have a rope.
SPELEO SPIEL NO. 213 JAN-FEB 1986 PAGE 10 TCC'S 40 th ANNIVERSARY YEAR Everything was of giant proportions to me. The boulders were house sized and looking up the shaft was amazing it did seem as if we were inside a pepper pot. By now Jeff had gone up and it was my turn out. Going up I could pick out interesting cracks and places I thought would make good bivvy spots (not that I'd like to sleep in there!). The top of the rope proved very interesting as the header had wound itself round and round the next rope leading out. I solved this by simply spinning until there was sufficient rope free to attach my ascenders to I was also wondering how much the header could take as I spun...... By the time I was out and off the rope, and Kier was starting it was dark. The bulb in my torch had blown before going down and I'd run out of water 113 of the way up; Kier's light was dying too and he also had trouble with the twisted rope near the top. We got back to the doline on one very fading light but unfortunately overwalked the track to the entrance of the cave. After some yelling and carrying on, we attracted some attention and Gregg had a chance to practice his rescue techniques, which really meant he had to trudge up through the mud again after being warm and dry. By now it was 11.30pm and time for bed. The following day I decided to walk out, whereupon of course, it started raining. If anyone is interested in going up I would be keen to go back again. Leigh Douglas PS. Rolf did find some holes which he referred to as A,B,C,D ..... Hole C had several pitches, but choked out. Rolf said there were leads they didn't look at and if asked could give accurate details.
The Tasmanian Caverneering Club was formed on 13 September
1946. Initially, information was provided to members through
a circular, copies of which exist back to November 1947.
"Speleo Spiel, Circular of the Tasmanian Caverneering
Club" was first published December 1960. Eight issues of this
are known, up to May 1962. In April 1964 a "Circular" was
again issued and seems to have continued, irregularly, until
March 1966. Then in April 1966, a "New Series" of Speleo
Spiel commenced, as a monthly newsletter.
In December 1996 The Tasmanian Caverneering Club
amalgamated with the Southern Caving Society and the
Tasmanian Cave and Karst Research Group to form the Southern
Tasmanian Caverneers. The combined group agreed to continue
to publish "Speleo Spiel" as its bi-monthly newsletter, as
continues today (2015).
Speleo Spiel is a vehicle for recording the cave and
karst-related activities, and particularly the achievements,
of the Southern Tasmanian Caverneers. It also carriers
technical and scientific reports, reprints, reviews and other
information likely to be of interest to members from time to