SPELEO SPIEL. No. 51. October, 1970. Published monthly by the Tasmanian Caverneering Club, Box 641 G, G.P.O., Hobart, TAS. 7001. Registered at the G.P.O. Hobart. Annual subscription 60 cents. Single copies 10 cents. Pres: Albert Goede, 8 Bath St., Battery Point, Hobart, Tas. 7000 Sec: Doug Turner, 79 Riawena Road, Rose Bay, Tas. 7015. FORWARD PROGRAMME. Oct. 11 Sunday: Track cutting in the Weld River area to complete access track. Leader: Noel White. Oct. 18 Sunday: 6 a.m. start. Further exploration of Hairy-goat Hole. Leader: Brian Collin. Oct. 24-25 Weekend. Trip to North-East to visit old mines and prospect for cave crickets and minerals. Also investigation of rumoured basalt (?) caves near Scottsdale. Leader: A.Goede. Nov. 4. Wednesday: 8p.m. General meeting at 8 Bath Street, Battery Point. Nov. 7,8 Combined weekend trip with S.C.S. in Junee area. Nov. 14,15 Weekend. Mt. Anne trip. Preparation for A.S.P. Conference. Leader: Brian Collin. Nov. 21,22. Weekend. Combined trip with S.C.S. in Ida Bay area. Saturday:Northern side of Marble Hill. Sunday: Exit Cave. EDITORIAL Exciting things continue to happen in the Junee area. Two more trips were made to the newly discovered swallet referred to as JF -X in the last Spiel. This has now been given the number JF 10. Further exploration has pushed the cave to a depth of at least 320ft., beyond a series of spectacular ladder drops. It continues further through a wet and narrow passage. Further exploration will need a strong team. On the last trip in September at least ten further holes were discovered in the same area. One has a small entrance with a strong draught and has already been pushed to a depth of 100ft. It shows great promise for further exploration. This new hole was officially named "Hairygoat Hole" at the last general meeting. To find out why read our new speleological technique. A NEW SPELEOLOGICAL TECHNIQUE. A number of people from other clubs have expressed their surprise at the apparent ease with which we keep on finding new caves. Dark hints have even been made that this is due to some secret scientific knowledge as a result of the fact that our membership includes several geologists, one geomorphologist, and a hydro engineer. Rather reluctantly we have therefore decided to make public the powerful technique we have evolved for the location of entrances to new caves. This technique, which involves close teamwork, is known to its initiates as "hairygoating". A promising area of limestone should be selected on the basis of geological and geomorphological characteristics and a large party induced to go there. From amongst their members they should elect a "hairygoat" who should have the following qualifications: a degree in the earth sciences, an unbalanced mind, and a guardian angel (prepared to work overtime). It is also very important for the "hairygoat" to wear shorts. It is equally important to appoint another member of the party who is not affected by mass hysteria to be given a large roll of marking tape and to be appointed as "keeper of the trail". The "hairygoat" so appointed then casts his eye over the landscape for 4 promising geomorphological signs of holes and starts running about excitedly L screaming at intervals at the top of his voice "I've got another onel I've got another onel" This so affects most of the remainder of the party that they follow his example as they gradually reach a state of mass hysteria. Scientifically controlled tests have shown that large numbers of holes can be discovered in a very short period of time while the "keeper of the trail"
page 2 ensures that their location will be safeguarded for future reference. Readers of our journals may be puzzled at this stage by the necessity of having a "hairygoat" with shorts, but this is essential to ensure quick selection of the most promising holes, which indicate their presence by inducing a cold breezy feeling up the legs. Like all new techniques the method has some disadvantages. The life of an active "hairygoat" tends to be rather short, as fallen logs and unseen holes demand a heavy toll. It would be a good practice to appoint a deputy "hairygoat" who can take over immediately at the untimely incapacitation or disappearance of the principal '"hairygoat" and maintain the desired level of mass hysteria necessary for the maintenance of a rapid discovery rate of new holes. Since it is desirable for a "hairygoat" to have a degree in the earth sciences, and in view of the fact that there is already a critical shortage of trained geologists in Australia, there is a desperate need to step up the rate at which earth scientists are turned out by our universities. Karst morphology should also be given a much more prominent place in undergraduate syllabuses (syllabi?) than is the case at present since the value of a "hairygoat" is much increased by an intimate knowledge of karst terrain. A(n0nymous) H. Goat. B.Sc., F.M.H.S. (F.M.H.S. foundation member of hairygoat society.) CLUB NEWS. The annual dinner was held at Kingston Beach Hotel and proved a great success, with 29 bods attending. The highlight of the evening came when an eager beaver photographer, misled by one of our members, asked our president to cut the "wedding cake". He was rather puzzled when the "bridew did not get up to help the "groom" cut the cake. Nor was he amused when he discovered he had been had, but his temper improved when advised to send the proofs and account to the misleading member. After dinner celebrations continued at the homes of Albert and Therese and Greg Rushton. The club seems to be going through an active period with quite a few members and prospectives joining the ranks. Two new members were accepted at the last general meeting: Bill Lehmann, 29 D'Arcy St., South Hobart. 7000. Philip Robinson, F1.5, 282 Sandy Bay Road, Sandy Bay. 7005.
page 3 New prospective members: David Cripps, 442 Elizabeth Street, Hobart. 7000. Peter Shaw, 3/25 Broadview Cres., Trevallyn, Launceston, 7250. New Name. The name "Hairygoat Hole" was made official at the October general meeting for the new hole with the draught discovered in the Junee area. The hole was found by Noel White on September 26 on the limestone spur south of JF 10. It has not yet been numbered. Cave numberinq Junee Florentine. The following caves have recently been numbered in this area: JF 9 Unnamed cave. Entrance is a steeply sloping bedding plane tunnel leading off from east bank of dry creek bed a short distance down valley from JF 10. Blocked about 50ft. down. Number low on left wall inside entrance. Numbered on 26/9/70. JF 10 Unnamed swallet. shall swallet with water dropping down 20ft. entrance pitch. Number on wall at bottom of pitch at face height. Numbered on 26/9/70. JF 11 Unnamed swallet. Small unnamed horizontal swallet with water flowing into south trending bedding plane rift with limestone dipping steeply to the east. Located to the west of Mt. Field West S.W. from Welcome Stranger Cave. Number at face height on west side of entrance rift. Numbered on 3/10/70. LOST LADDER. During this year a 30ft. Bonwick ladder belonging to the club has mysteriously disappeared. The ladder has solid rungs clamped directly to the wires without the use of ferules and has C -link, connections at each end. As we shall need all the ladder we possess soon members are asked to check their personal equipment for this ladder. When found please return to Brian Collin as soon as possible. Publication on Mt. Etna Caves (Queensland). The University of Queensland Speleological Society has announced that it anticipates the publication in November of a collection of papers covering several aspects of the Mt. Etna and Limestone Ridge Caves area of Central Queensland. The book is expected to have a popular appeal to both speleologists and the general public. The book is concerned with a caving area near Rockhampton whose existence in threatened by the large-scale mining of limestone for cement making. It includes articles on the geology of the area, descriptions and maps of caves, speleological work, accounts of cave fauna and surface flora and fauna, the history of the area and the case for conservation of the caves. It is illustrated throughout with black and white photographs. Price $2-75. If you are interested in obtaining a copy, contact Albert before or at the next general meeting. Further enquiries to: University of Queensland Speleological Society, c/o The Union, Uni. of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland, 4067. A.S.F. Convention Secretary reports: The A.S.F. Conference in Hobart and the field trips afterwards are proving to expected some 55 school Boarding in the field be unexpectedly popular with cavers from interstate. It is cavers will be staying at the conference centre Hutchins House at Sandy Bay and at least 70 cavers will take part trips. Estimated attendance on field trips will be as follows: Ida Bay Mt. Anne 10. Junee Florentine Ida Bay 30. Mole Creek 30. The figures for Mole Creek include 10 enrolments still expected from South Australia. The A.S.F. Convention Committee has reluctantly decided that no applications received after 5 October for participation in the Junee Florentine Ida Bay field trip can be accepted. The reason is that the Junee Florentine area is one of limited access controlled by Australian Newsprint Mills. For good reasons the company is rather reluctant to have large parties of cavers in the area. Bushfire danger at this time of the year is rather high and in addition timber getting will be in full swing during early
page 4 January. As a result heavily laden timber trucks will be a hazard to private traffic. It may be necessary to divide the Junee Florentine Ida Bay party into two groups one of them going to Ida Bay first so that the number of cavers in the area at any one time can be kept to a maximum of 15. All local cavers who can provide transport on either the Junee Florentine Ida Bay trip or the Mole Creek trip will be most welcome as transport on field trips is in rather short supply. A good selection of papers has already been offered for presentation at the conference but more contributions will be welcomed. TRIP REPORTS. West Coast Friday Sunday, 11-13/9/1970. Party: Noel White, Philip Robinson, Bill Lehmann, Albert and Therese Goede. The party except Noel left in a convoy on Friday afternoon. All went well until Mt. Arrowsmith where wheel bearings in the front left -hand wheel of Bill's car gave up the ghost. After a post mortem (in pouring rain) a passing motorist was given a message for the R.A.C.T. in Queenstown and we left Bill guarding his vehicle, Philip having transferred to the Triumph. We met Noel at the Kelly Basin Road turn-off and followed him at a discreet distance. Just as well because a big boulder decided to come down Mt. Owen. It came to rest perched on the edge of the road 40ft. in front of the Landcruiser. On further examination by daylight we found that it was approx. 5x5~6 feet and had made a crater three feet deep after coming over the edge of the road cutting. It had also cut a very impressive track through the vegetation on the lower slopes of Mt. Owen. We reached the hut without further mishap and would have spent a peaceful night except for Bill who stumbled into the hut in the early hours of the morning. After repairing his car he had managed to lose his way and very nearly his car on a side track at Crotty. The following day in typical squally west coast weather we scaled the northern end of Mt. Jukes and visited some old copper mine adits. The formation in the tunnels was quite remarkable a brilliant blue chalcanthite flow and a number of green malachite straws and also some brown and orange limonite formations. Albert and Therese were further delighted by the presence of cave crickets. That night we celebrated Noel's birthday in an appropriate manner. On Sunday it was decided to visit the old asbestos mine at Argent Hill in a further quest for cave crickets. On the way out we just dodged a pothole that proved on examination to be 5ft, deep1 Must be a Tasmanian record. The Triumph and Holden waited for Noel's Landcruiser at the Kelly Basin turn-off. As he did not appear Bill locked the Holden and we all went back in the Triumph to look for Noel and found him stranded without petrol. After some difficulties and curses (Bill having left the spare petrol in his car), we managed to siphon some from the Triumph. when we finally did get to Argent Hill having left Bill's vehicle in Queenstown we found the mine tunnels devoid of crickets, The nearby quarry, however, yielded some good specimens of stichtite, serpentine and asbestos. The railway tunnel also proved devoid of crickets but contained quite a few straws growing from the concrete. We got back to Hobart late on Sunday after an interesting and eventful weekend. Albert Goede. Junee Florentine Saturday, 26/9/1970. Party: Noel White (leader), Albert, Therese and Diana Goede, Mieke Vermeulen, Philip Robinson, Clive Boulter, Bill Lehmann, Stuart Nicholas, David Cripps and Kevin Kiernan of S.C.S. This unusually large party set out after the usual delay from the usual starting place in Battery Point. The delay was caused by the non-arrival of Simon Stephens, who pleaded a sudden and transitory illness as his excuse. The trip to Maydena was uneventful apart from an unusually long stop at the pie shop at Maydena, resulting from the size of the party, and the presence there of an even larger party .from the Landrover Club. Suitably fortified,
page 5 we soon passed through the A.N.M. gate, and reached our destination at the foot of the track to JF 5. The purpose of the trip was to continue exploration of the new cave, temporarily christened JF X, which had been found on the previous trip to the area. That time progress had been stopped by a "50' pitch" at a depth of about 150'. Rather than be caught with insufficient gear we had brought over 200' of ladder, and about 400' of rope. By carefully distributing this mass of gear among the available packs the sagacious leader managed to keep his own pack light. thus ensuring rapid progress up the hill. Unfortunately there was no guarantee that the cave would continue beyond the pitch, so the leader cunningly decided he would have to find a few more holes to placate the angry mob if JF X fizzled out. By taking a short-cut to the cave he managed to find 4 by the time the rest of the party arrived. The ladder for the entrance pitch was soon in place, and Philip, Bill and Noel dragged the gear through the cave while Albert attached the tag which officially numbered the cave JF 10. There was much less water in the cave than previously, and the pitch looked quite simple. Just to be sure the ladder went all the way to the bottom, four ladders were joined giving over 100' down the hole. With Bill as belayman, Philip descended, and a long period of puzzlement began for those at the top of the pitch, punctuated only by faint cries of "up -upm and "down down", and various other screams of horror or delight which were not among the pre-arranged signals. Finally, greatly to our surprise, came a call for someone to bring down more ladders. Rather than sit shivering at the top I elected to take these down myself. With the ladders dangling from my belt and bumping about my heels, I started down, and soon saw how grossly wrong our estimate of the depth had been. The first vertical drop was 60', followed by an inclined drop of a further 40'. At this point I learned what the unrehearsed screams were about, as the icy water poured over my head, thoroughly soaking everything. At this point the cleft had opened out and was up to about 10' wide, and about 40' long. The next drop that gaped in front of us was sheer for about 60', and appeared to have a pool of water at the bottom. The lights we had were not adequate to see well at that distance, and unfortunately my powerful torch had pulled from my belt on the way down, and was out of reach about 20' lower. For this reason we can not guarantee what the length of the final drop will prove to be, or even if it is the final drop. The ladder which we had was probably adequate, but it would have required attaching another rope to the safety line to continue belaying from the top. This Bill properly refused to do, so we returned to the surface. Our estimate of the length of the pitch had been at least 300% in error, so we must wait for another trip to learn what is at the bottom of the next. One interesting feature of this cleft is that it is formed along a fracture zone which consists of limestone fragments cemented by calcite. This may represent a fault zone. The cave is becoming larger as it gets deeper, and although it is no longer an easy cave, it is at least possible, so far, as long as there has been no heavy rain. After recovering some of its strength on the surface, the party began the walk back to the cars. It was planned to mark a new track back via an easier route, however a disturbing habit of Keyin and myself to wander about the hillside finding new caves made the track rather tortuous. At least seven caves were found, until a violent crash landing made me lose interest. From then on progress was quicker and more direct, and we were soon back at the cars, where Therese and Diana were waiting after their day of mediumly successful bug hunting. Noel White. Junee Area Sunday, 3/10/1970. Brian Collin (leader), Bill Lehmann. Philip Robinson, Stuart Nicholas. At the usual Wednesday night meeting at ~rian's place, it was decided, that as Mt. Anne was still under snow, to have an all out effort to push JF 10 (we still need a name for this swallet), and all agreed heartily on a 6a.m. start. But, as is common with all good intentions, something goes amiss and there were only 4 of us slugging up the track to the cave with all available gear shared out between our packs. A fine drizzle had started and raised the
page 6 humidity sufficiently to make walking with full packs tiring so when we had gone up the valley far enough to hear the water running into JF 4-5 we cut across to the yellow track. My estimate of 70 yds. to the cave was most welcome but it turned out to be 200 yds. However, we eventually got to the cave at the unforgivable hour of 8.30a.m. After refreshments the top ladder was hung and the intrepid group descended into the damp darkness. Luckily the creek was running less strongly than the previous week but we were still damp by the time the "big drop" was reached. Ninety feet of ladder was dropped over the edge and well belayed on a double wedge flake at the edge of the hole. With Brian as safety-man, I plucked up my courage and descended, to be followed in short order by the gear and Philip. At the 60' mark I arrived at the 4'x2-2%' ledge that was descended to before. While Brian tied the safety line off at the top, Philip and I connected up another 90' of ladder and fed this over the edge of the wet section of the climb. This is about 10 ft. down at a 45Q angle and then this was followed by a 40' drop down the rift line with a ledge at 20'. I went to the bottom of this 40' to rescue the torch Noel dropped last trip. This section is subject to water pouring front the roof 80' above, but forewarned by Noel and Philip's previous experience we were wearing waterproofs and Philip had found a dry spot to belay me from. The water is still very hard when it falls that distance. Noel's torch was hung on a convenient spike of rock on the ledge at 20' and I walked along this ledge approx. 15' to the top of the biggest drop so far encountered in this cave 80' free. As I was feeding the ladder over I could see the reflection of my head lamp peering back at me from the pool at the bottom of the drop. But as luck turned out this was only 6' in diameter and 6" deep. At the bottom of the drop there ie an area roughly 12x20 ft. flat with a pebble lined floor. There is a righthand bend in the chamber to another area about 12' in diameter where the water also drips down. In the outer corner of the chamber is a low crawl which, when cleared of rubble, proved to be 2'x2' with 6" of water in the bottom. A short (6ft.) look along this proved that it continued with a right hand turn and a "waterfall" sound a bit further on. As I was tiring and extremely wet I backed out and returned up the ladder with a bit of difficulty at the top due to a narrowing rift in which I jammed at the last ten feet. With a bit of gymnastics including hand over hand up 5 rungs I was soon standing on the dry ledge next to Philip. As the time was now about 12.30 p.m. We pulled up the gear and returned up to the top of the big drop where Brian and Stuart were patiently waiting for us. Philip and Stuart grabbed half the gear and headed for the surface while Brian and I rolled the rest and decided to try the squeeze when the weather was dry. After more coffee and eats we went to look at 3 holes close by. The first was blocked, the second looked to go only back to the rift at the top of JF 10, and the third was descended by Brian but proved to squeeze down without much promise. After returning to JF 10 we picked up packs and set off down the "yellow trackn to Hairygoat Hole. This was found by the same process as before, i.e. stepping around the wrong side of the track marker tree. After clearing away the rubbish and belaying a rope around the convenient tree, I climbed down about 8' to find that the hole opened up and so yelled for the rest to come down and bring some gear. The hole went down at 45Q for 25' or so and then there was a ten feet drop. Just back of this is a 2' diam. hole going down at 60Q or so for about 30' but as this was not draughting we went down the 10' drop and another 12' drop 30' or so on. Below this was an easy scramble down to the top of a 40' drop. As we had no more ladder Brian stopped at the top of the 12' drop and lowered the ladder used there down to us. The ladder was secured around the limestone pillar in the middle of the hole, and with Philip as safety-man again, I climbed down to find that there was a 6' wide by 30' deep hole on one side of the chamber behind a 10' high rock barrier. Down the 459 sloping floor to a 4' high passage leading down about 40' or so to the top of a drop. This drop I did not approach too closely as the floor consists of soft moving rubble. At this point I climbed back up and we returned to the surface to find the 7 a.m. party waiting for ue to hear how the hole went. This hole was descended about 100' and still goes. It has a fair amount of flowstone and moonmilk on the walls and the breeze still blows at the bottom. We divided up the gear amongst those present and returned to the cars and home, with the usual stops on the way.
page 7 With JF 10 now down to about 320' and waiting for dry weather to be pushed further, and the new cave showing so much promise so early (draught and fairly easy pitches), this area shows a lot of promise and should be the big attraction at the A.S.F. Conference. The best idea put forward so far is the 6 o'clock start, as this means you can be at the cave at about 8.30 a.m. and have plenty of time to explore at a leisurely pace before having to get back to the cars before dark. I know this might bring howls of protest from some quarters but it is my opinion and anyone is free to differ. Bill Lehmann. Junee Florentine Saturday, 3/10/1970. Party (7 a.m.)Albert Goede (leader), Therese Goede (+ Diana and Hilary), Noel White, Simon Stephens, Dorothy Boulter and Tom Forster. The party left Hobart some time after seven and made its leisurely way to Maydena with the usual breakfast stop at the cold pie shop. After passing through the barrier we went up the left hand branch of the Junee Quarry Road to see if the advance party to JF 10 had left any messages. Not finding one we thought that since we had no tackle there was not much point in going up to look at the new holes. If only we had known that Brian had left some gear in the boot of his car. A visit to Welcome Stranger Cave was decided on but after turning into No.9 road the leader once more managed to take the wrong turn and we finished up on a dead end road a little further south. Going back, Noel stopped to investigate a promising hole at the base of a low cliff. Investigation yielded a few owls, but just to the north a small stream was found to go underground into a steeply dipping bedding plane rift. The cave was investigated by Simon, Tom, Albert and, Dot, who followed some 100' of narrow stream passage before being stopped at a point where water almost reached the roof. Since none of us felt like doing a "casteret'" we retreated, but further investigation in a dry summer may be worthwhile. The cave was numbered JP 11. Meanwhile Noel had gone surface exploring and on his return reported another small swallet with a metal box inscribed S.C.S. 1967, indicating that this was not an original discovery. He also found a steep sided sinkhole 80ft. deep, but this was not investigated due to lack of time. After lunch we made a quick trip through Welcome Stranger. The top entrance had to be used as the stream was still flowing out of the bottom entrance. After admiring the formations the party returned. Albert had the odd luck to discover a single specimen of Parvotettix (a cave cricket) in the twilight zone of the upper entrance. This is the first time it has been recorded from a cave in the Junee Florentine area. We then returned to the Junee Quarry Rd., to see if we could be of some assistance to Brian and his party. We met up with them at Hairygoat Hole, which they had just explored to a depth of 100ft. They reported that it was a promising prospect for further exploration. Their further exploration of JF 10 is described in the previous report. All in all it was a most successful trip with pleasant sunny weather apart from a little drizzle early in the day. Albert Goede.
2 (HELP S.C.S. have abducted our President. (See S,E.M.))
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