Niugini Caver

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Niugini Caver

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Niugini Caver
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Niugini Caver
Papua New Guinea Cave Exploration Group
Port Moresby, PNG: Papua New Guinea Cave Exploration Society (PNGCEG)
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Regional Speleology -- Newsletters
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New Guinea -- Papua New Guinea -- Oceana

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Australian National University
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NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 61 Niugini is the publication of the Papua New Guinea txploration Group, an .informal.association of persons engabed in 9Peleology in Papua New Guinea. 5 Number 3 0 ecember, 1977 Price I< 1 • 0 0 per i s sue K4.00 volume , Editor Malcolm Pound, \. P. 0,, Box 3824, Port Moresby, National Capital District, PAPUA NEW GUINEA Secretary Cartography Produotion of this Issue Alison Pound Rob Canty M. D. and A. A .. Pound, N. Stewart, B. Finch Report of the 1976 New Ireland Speleological Expedition Abstract D. S. Gillieson ..... Sotpela Toktok D. s. Gillieson ..... ............. " .. o"•"••••; ... 62 Expedition Members., •• oo••••o••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••!••62 Trip Diary T. Sprod with sections by o. Gillieson and S. Wilson." .... " ...... o .. " .......... ., ....... o " ...... .,." .. " .... o ... 41 •• 63 Physidgraphy of the Expedition Area D. s. Gillieson ..... .. 71 Editoi's Cave De s c r i p t i ons S • lJ i 1 s on , R • Canty , J • Lands berg , D. and R. Page •••••••• OOOOofOOo0••••••<>••••,,.78 D. s. Gillieson ...................... Yileon ............................. o ... o; .......... ,.94 S0 s. Wilson •••••••••••• Food J. Landsberg ••••••••••• 000••••••••••••••••••• Guides and Carriers J. Landsberg ............ o•o•••••••••o Camping J. Landsberg ••• Medical J. Landsberg ••••••••••••••••••••••••• 0••••••• Insurance J. landsberg •••••••••••••••••••••• Basic Conversational Lelet D. s. Gillieson •••••••••••••••••• 99 Acknowledgements00ooooaoaooeooo•••••••o••o•<>•••••••••••••ooo100 New Cover Photographs .. The cover consists of a series of photographs illustrating highltghts of the expedition. Photographs by R. Canty, R. Page and s. Wilson. in Page Size. Due tb a misunderstanding the covers and maps for this report were prepared and printed to A4 size before the editor became aware of the situation. As a result this issue of Niuc;ini Caver has been published in A4 format. Future issues will revert: to the 200mm x 250mm size used previously. Niuginj. 9aver will probably start tci be printed on A4 paper with Volume 7. Note: The name of the cave Lernerigarnas (LBS) is incorrectly spelt on the two maps covering the cave. The correct spelling is that used in the text;


62 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 THE REPORT OF THE 1976 NEW IRELAND SPELEOLOGICAL EXPEDITION ABSTRACT D. s. Gillie$on* The Lelet Plateau of aentral New Ireland, Papua New Guinea is an area of polygonal karst at elevations between 900 and 1400 metres above sea'' level. The drainage of the karst depressions is wholly underground, and large springs at sea level on the NE coast are fed by underground conduits from the plateau. f During 1976 a team of ten Australian and PNG cavers explored in 150 cave entrances on the Lelet. Cave systems up to 100m in depth and 650m in length were found. The longest and deepest caye9 Lemeragamas, was explored to a pitch which remains undescended. Other caves were explored to mud filled terminal sumps. Resurgences on the coast were also explored and are herein. SOTPELA TOKTOK Insait long dispela buk mipela givim tok save long wanpela wok mipela i bin, mekim long Lelet long Niu Ailan long 1976. Mipela tenpela i -bin stap wan mun long na rnipela i bin wok long painim ol draipela hol long graun. nau mipela toktok long ol hol na samting bilong dispela wok na raitim sampela piksa long sampela hol Mipela i bin laik draipela hol i winim ol hol long Papua Niugini. Mipela i bin painim sampela hol i go daun ."long graun longwei liklik' na. tu mipela i painim wanpela hol mipela i no inap painim as bilong en. Mipela i bin go long hap wara i pundaun long en. Mipela i amamas tru long sindaun b.ilong mipela long dispela taem na ol helavim ol manmeri bilong Lelet L bin-givim mipela olsem soim ol hol, karim kago givirn. nating kaikai long mipela. Mipela ilaik tok tenkyu lohg na Lentueng Mesulam, Liman Benoan na Stephen Enock •.. R. Bourke Rob Canty' Jim Farnworth EXPEDITION MEMBERS. Cartographer Fitter & Turner Dave Gillieson (Co oidinator) Geomorphologist student Neil Hickson Jill Landsberg Dave Larkin Ralph Page Tim Sprod Stewart Wilson Teacher Plantation Manager Electrician Geologist Miner PNGCEG/UQSS UQSS PNGCEG UQSS SSS UQSS PNGCEG CCC PNGCEG UQSS/MICE P11":CEG LJQSS SSS CCC MICE Papua New Guinea Cave Exploration Group University of .Queensland Speleological Society Sydney Speleological Society Chillagoe Caving Club Mount Isa Cave Explorers * Dept. of Geography, University of Queensland, St. Lubiag Brisbanet Queensland, Australia. 4067 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 63 LELET: THE REPORT-OF THE 1976 NEW IRELAND SPELEOLOGICAL EXPEDITION .INTRODUCTION .The Le 1 et P 1 at of 'New Ire 1 and is an extensive area of Miocene _ limestone at altitudes of 900'to 1400 m a.s.l •• Water sinking on the plateau resurges in or near the sea an the northeast coast; several kilometres away. The depth potential for oaves is thus up to 1400. metres aver most of the plateau. first.visited the Lelet in April 1974 (Bourke, 1974). Their enthusiasm was wetted and after a reconnaissance trip (Wilde, 1975), the plateau was chosen as the venue for the 1975 New Ireland Speleological Expedition. Eight cavers spent a mqnth on the Lelet and recorded 92 caves and shafts. The was 102m and the longest 500m (Bourke, 1976). the.1975 expedition returned convinced that caves in the area. Accordingly the 1976 expedition was planned. Cavers from PNG Tasmania and who had worked together to organise equipment and sponsership for a month's stay on the high plateau of Lelet. Membership fluctated during .early 1976 but by early May 1976 a team of ten was It was fortunate that two members of the 1975 expedition decided to come again. The team assembled in Rabaul on the 27th June. The diary tells of their discoveries. TRIP DIARY Drawn from the diaries kept by' Stewart Wilson and Tim Sprod, with additional comments by other members. 27th June The nine team members left Rabaul on a hired workboat, the M. 1Calias1 • was Bay on the west coast of Ireland, and this was reached largely due to Rob Canty's navigational skills the crew had no charts and didO't know the area at all! The team mit by Larkin who.drove us over to the east coast and up to. Plantation {see area map). 28th June The team formed into two groups. Rob, Mike, Stewart .and went to check resurgences. They first explored Lamlamsiki a tight branching system near Pum Hill. The next was unenterable, but those at Lemeris were enterable for a few Nearby Mike stumbled on a cave used for rainmakihg " . ' ' secdnd group (Dave, Jim, Neil Ralph) went to. tJia,Qalum and entered the main series of subparallel rifts \see c.ave descriptions). Venomous wildlife terminated exp1oration of one rift until a later date. Jim Neil continued exploration elsewhere in he system, while the others above the cave for entrances. Several active sinks were found on the raised coral terrace but none went.


64 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 29th June The same groups.set out again. The first went to Meabin, a large cave with an impressive entrance, plenty of bats9and plenty of mud. It was surveyed and the group walked back past the entrance to Merakambilin, the following day's project. The second group spent the morning and surveying the aqueops delights of the Dalum efflux cave. That afternoon Ralpr and the first group went with Dave Larkin to Danmin previously entered by the biologist Petar Beran The stream passage was travorsod to a sump9 the party\ employing lifejackets, tractor tubes and ropes. The secoMd group spent the afternoon looking at resurgences in the Kirnidan area. That at Kimidan was impressive but unenterable, the local people reported no further caves in the vicinity. 30 th In the morning Rob, Mikep Stewart and tim entered Merakambilin. The entrance passage was also used as a 'rainmakers cave' and led to This was descended to a passage junction. was a sump (with a python!), upstream a series of passages became too tight and too muddy. ( Jill, Ra.fph, Dave, Neil and Jim surveyed Danmin cave in the morningand in the afternoon checked resurgences as far south as Bulu. A 0.3 cumec resurgence at Silom issued from a collapsed cave entrance. Several entrances were seen high in the coastal cliffs, and Lamlamsik cave at Pum Hill was also visited.Jim, and Tim spent the afternoon packing for a recce trip to the plateau. Heavy rains that night dispelled hopes for an easy drive to Limbin the next day. 1st July The advance party Jim, Neil and Tim -set off early with Dave Larkin in his Toyota. They winched up several soap stone hills before snapping the winch cable. They donned packs and the remaining distance to Limbin, taking two houts, At they met Thomas Tekaina of Bungaring, one df the! guides fqr 1975 N.I.S.E •• They pushed on to Lenkamin to see, Lakuna,the chief councillor, and the night in a school house. Back at Lamerika, Dave and Jill sorted and packed the loads for the next:day's carry while Ralph, Rob and Stewart surveyed the main pas$age of Merakambilin. 2nd July• The advarice went to Letbebe village in the morning, and Lakuna Nau to guide the party to Lababat, water source ih the high plateau. Unfortunately, after a long walk it was located and they returned to Limbin via Bungaring. The others set off that morning with all the gear, Dave Larkir, his Toyota, a tractor and .trailer and forty carriers in case all else failed. After a lot of brute force and difficulty they reached Limbin. Most of the Lelet people were at a sing sing at the coast, so no carriers were available for a trip to the The party and gear spent the night at Letbebe. Dave Larkin had trouble getting down -it was six days before the tractor qot back. 63 62 140 NIUGINI CAVER VolUme 5 Number 3 BISMARCK SEA 0 I Map LOCATION MAP 4'> 10 38 39 40 SOUTH PACIFIC OCEAN 65 64 5 10 I I km. MAP ONE: TOPOGRAPHY OF CENTRAL NEW IRELAND Pecked line indicates coverage of photomap


\ NIUGINI CAVER Volume 5 Number 3 SOUTH PACIFIC OCEAN \ l 1: \ \ / ./ ( A_, /. .. 't\ \ ' \ \ \ ...... --f f f To Tm-p ' ' I \ \ ' \ Fluviokarst ].' .) CLOUD COVERAGE BISMARCK SEA d\u Fault with relative movement <'N Tm p Lelet Limestone (Miocene Pliocene ) Jaulu Volcanics ( Oligocene ) KM CLOUD COVERAGE 10 /" I , I I \ \ \ ) QC Raised Corals ( Quatemary ) Tou Lemau Intrustves ( Ollgooone) """"""'"''v.n,,. / Goofogfo"1 Coo"ot \\\ iC '"''" ""' n


NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 68 3rd July Mike and Jim.returned to the coast(and work) in the morning, while the others, guided by Thomas and three others, walked to Lababat to establish a camp. Thomas and the others returned to Letbebe to organise carriers for the rest of the gear. That _night the party took three hours to light a fire in the rainforest. 4th July The campsite was a small mound in the middle of a large cliffed depression. The trickle water supply was engineered to provide a reasonable flow, several trees were cleared to provide sunlight and a group of plastic roofed bothies was $.rected. That afternoon Jill, Ralph and Neil headed east aloMg a line of Two enterable holes (both choked) were found in depressions. Stewart and Tim went back to some black seen to one side of the track to Lababat. The first involved a !Orn pitch to a sizeable cave, but the rest quickly choked. 5th July Neil; Jill and Dave checked depressions in the Danasing area, the track to the villages. Five depressions were examined, yielding shafts of only 10m and passage lengths of up to 30m. The heavy soil cover in the area was thought to retard cave :development. Depressions were larger, with long centripetal MeaMwhile Rob1 Ralph and Stewart climbed a ridge to try aMd locate on the aerial photographs. The view was ridges, and more ridges, all covered in thick forest. A location was announced and subsequent exploration validated it. In the afternoon the carriers -mostly older men, women arid chilqren of the Lelet arrived with the rest of the gear. Each peraqn was paid K3 for the carry, which although relatively short, was steep and over awkward terrain. Thomas Tekaina, Steven and Liman Benson stayed as guides and camp assistants. 6th July . Disapproving of our shoddy structural arrangements, Thomas, Steven and Wiman set to work making life comfortable. The team stood awe and occasionally lifted poles or held vine corld. In the afternoon Dave started his pedological research while the others went 'doline bashing'. From the previous limit of explor• ation two lines of dolines were explored. Two caves found that day running the first was entered via a 15rn pitch, the via a series of short climbs. 7th Dave contihued his research ably assisted by Steven. Stewatt, Rob and Tim set out on a reconnaissance to the south. Two large holes were encountered, but left for later. They were however the only significant holes in the area and lack of forestalletj proper exploration. . Neil, Jill and Ralph set out to continue exploration of the line of to the east. When they had not returned by 17.30pm Tim and Thomas headed out along their track with ropes, lights and food. Both parties carried walkie -talkies but these were found to be useless at a range of 20Dm. Eventually after crossing difficult shafted terrain in the dark, the search was abandoned till morning. Food was cached at a prominent track junction.


69 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 Bth July t ff ed After a largely sleepless night, everyone in camp se lo d' with sufficient gear for a rescue. At . the food . ea , s elicited a faint response and the lost team came into view. After ohecking out several shafts. in the previous Liman had suggested a 1 short cut' back to camp. After_ . hours walking they realized they lost e night. Ah apologetic Liman a fire and bush e so were comfortable, if hungry and thirsty. to camp, Rob, Stewart and Tim set explore the large holes of the 7th. They, enter.ed by a short pitch and . traversed . a couple of hundred metres of passage before k l turning back at a pitch. The cave was to be known as Sunamo o a (L83). 9th July 1 d th next Rob Stewart and Tim returned to Sunamoko a, e . _ fairly short -and.explored the stream passage to a large swfup chamber. Surveying then commenced. The rest; of the team explored to the south, finding several entrances and a large shaft -all choked. 10th July t d N il went on a Was universally declared a rest day. Stewar an e . Bread bri6f but got returned early. was baked and was much appreciated. Stewart and Tim the survey of Dave 'Jill and Neil went on a brief The guides returned from a rie visi village with,an expert hunter, Lentuang who intimata; knowledge of the Sun?n and Danasing areas an w was to prove an invaluable guide. 12th Juty . . t Liman accompanied him leave due to s. R l h Stewart and as far as Limbin, the next 'Jill, Lentuang, Tim completed the Sunamokola survey trails. Thomae of a feast. 13th July Th others headed along new set off to find the hun 1ng rai • ' tl t sided shafts on the 'punctute marks', two found, but nothing air photos. Several.small es ran high when Ralph was absent matching the photo cause was acute carbide down a hole for some. 1 a line of dolines, Jill anld Nail diddaff to 20m deep. One of entering severa caves1 an . ttie was mumu-ed that night. 14th Juiy . . d deli htful by all save Stewart Breakfast was aftempt was made to find and a aine •k t Dave Jill and Thomas made a the 'puncture mnr s o ' recce along a linear depression toward a deep sinkhole prominent on the airphotos. Several shafts but all though one was draughting strongly. On the a.12m shaft passed, but not entered. Ralph and NeJ.:1 investigated_ several. shafts known to Lentuang, but all were choked. fH U G HJI C \I E i \J 0lU1v1 E 5 NUMB E F< 3 70 1 Sth, July Jill1 Ralph and Dave set off for Danasing with Thomas and Lentuang. On the way they examined six depressions, two shafted and one with a spring and a dry stream passage. The Oanasing spring was a at a slope foot, clear and cool. Coming home Ralph caught a python, impressing Thomas and Lentuang. The others descended shafts found by Neil and Jill on the 13th. A 20m pitch led to a stream passage. That night the python was also mumu-ed. 16th.July with rain all day so became a rest day. In the afternoon growled around until Steven acbompanied him on a recce. Steven wore a raincoat and a martyred look. Stewart found-a gully leading to an entrance. He explored a tight fissure to Persistence paid off. 17th,: July Dave, Tim, and Lentuang set off to examine holes the east of Dana sing 9 close to the 'drop off'. Several small .paves and were entered, until Lentuang cut his foot badly with a First-aid was administered and they made their way back to camp. The others returned to Stewart's cave, now caliad Lemerigamas. After three pitches the cave Was still gong strong, if a little tightly. Liman located two promising in a nearby depression. 18th' July was disturbed by an which rattled Mots and slopped the porridge over the teams It a few minor landslips in depressions. Not daunted,: Neil, Ralph and Stewart pushed Lemeragamas as far as a low watery crawi in a major stream passage. Tributaries were joining the passage and the system looked set to go big. liman's entrances gavij; access to the tight rifts and streamway of Labapiviiis cave. 19thJuly Jill and Tim went to push and survey 1he work was completed, the cave terminating in a flowstone block uf the The others pushed Lemeragamas along several hundred metres of decorated streamway to a pitch estimated at 20m. Out of gear, they commenced surveying out. 20th July was to be the last day of caving, so the whole team .entered Ralph, Neil and Tim were to push the system while the others surveyed. However at the last pitch the bolting kit was found to be inoperable. No other belays could be within SOm, so the attempt was abandoned. Surveying and derfgging resulted in a 10pm exit to amuch appreciated log fire. 21st July Was spent packing,cleaning gear and dismantling camp in for departure. 22rtp July Sixcarriers arrived early, and camp was struck. was reached in 1! hours. After in the forest, the . sun+ight of the villages was blinding. The views were superb. Surplus food and equipment was divided between the gOides or given to the local scihool. Dave Larkin had up carriers from the coast: five hour the cool comfort of Lamerika was reached. The beer and real food (meat instead of T.V.P.) were universally appreciated.


23r -Juiy The day was spent festering in the Oalum efflux, ropes, gear and bodies. That evening the team was guests of honour at a barbecue given by Dave Larkin and Heather Anderson. 24th July After a iate rise, the gear loaded onto trucks and Bay was teached round noon. After a five hour1wait, a boat finally appeared, tried to enter the bay9 hitthe reef and st9pped1 Superficial damage only. It afforded the opport unity fQr a slow row out to the ship across the quicksilver waters qf a bay coloured by a tropical sunset. The fleshpots of Rabaul were reached around midnight. The 1976 N.I.S.E. over. PHYSIOGRAPHY OF THE EXPEDITION AREA David s. Gillieson The Le let Plateau .of centralNew Ireland, Papu_a Ne.I.ii Guinea, is an area of approximately 500 squara kilometres Tertiary limestone at an of 900 and 1400m ab6ve sea level. The Lelet between 151'E and and la titudes 1 0' S to .3() 30 'S. The upper surface of the plateau is roughly planar and dips about slli-.North 'East. The North Eastern fall of the plateau is comprised of a series of fourteen subhorizontal terraces, many of which for the length of the. plateau. The South Western edge of the plateau is marked by steep cliffs of limestone up. to 530m high. .i. The activities of the expedition were confined to the coasial terraces and the honeycomb karst of the high plateau. The morphology of these two areas only will be discussed •. Shannon (1976) has described the morphology of the fluviokarst upon whi9h the Lelet villages are located. 1. Coastal terraces and alluvium The terrapes on the North Eastern fall of the plateau are composed pf Quaternary raised corals from sea level to an altitudeof 150m. The photomap indicates their areal extent and appeararioe. The terrace is up to 1km wide and ranges in altitude from 10 to 3dm above sea level. On the seaward it is delimited by cliffs up to 25m high. At the base of these cliffs numerous freshwater springs emerge with flows of up to 2 cumecs from short cave passages. Freshwater springs also occur on the sea bed up to 100m from the shore. The upper surface of the lower is characterised by shallow soil filled dolines up to 100m 'In diameter and 10m in depth. Several of these dolines. on the inner fringe of the terrace have enterable paraphreatic cave pa&$ages. The soil is typically a terra rossa, texturally_ clay to clay (Van Wijk, 1959). At several points (Kimidan, Dalum, Pum Hill) freshwater streams emerge either from caves or as Vauclusian springs and have formed incised channels across the coral terrace. In situ bioherms form residual hills on the cliff-foot caves (Jennings, 1972), and tend to be found along outer edge of the terrace, suggesting that the terraces are growth structures rather than wave cut The arcuate shape of bays and headlands (with the exceptioh of Cape Lemeris Llhich shriws structural contrtjl) would tend to rnnPirm this6 The l?west are largely cleared of natural lowland hill forest vegetation and are used for the production of copra, cocoa and root crops. The terraces have retained their forest cover and are somewbat narrower. Closed.depressions have either minimal gully development and shafted sinks or rectilinear low-order (often parallel to the terrace rim) leading to sinks .• The West coast has a narrow coral terrace and extensive and swamps. The greater degree of sediment deposition related to the receipt of sediment derived the weathering of the Jaulu volcanics (tuffs and agglomerates). 2. Honeycomb karst This type is confined to the high plateau at summit elevations than 1200 metres, the summit elevations reaching a maximym of 1420 metres near the head of the Putnumba It will seen from the photomap that the upper surface of the plateQ.U is completely covered with closed polygonal d • f bl h . eprese1ons o. e s ape and size. Depression depths in the area v1s1 ranged from 10 to The depressions are and by narrqw crested sinuous ridges Small nea . d .. • , r circu ar are on the flanks of a highei ' Depression size is extremely variable and to the bounding the plateau. This may be to increased porosity (forereef talus limestone), or in9reased hydraulic relief. ( The.honeycomb karst terrain shows alignment of depressions.on aeria+ photography •. An orientation analysis was therefore : to determine the degree of structural control over alignment. The n tat ions of t e 1 o g axes of 1. 7 7 d 8 pre 8 8 i 0 n 8 we r 8 ; in thirty six classes from 0 to 180$ The in each class were plotted on a rose of major faults, joint sets and the tectonic d7p were also measured and entered on a separate diagram. (1972) used.the X2 statistic to assess the s1gn1f1cance.of orientation peaks. If the stream sinks in en area uniformly dispersed, the depression divides would tend to the hexagon form and no pref errod orientation of occur. it is possible to test the empirical data against the null hypothesis that they a uniform, circular distribution. The statistic chi-squared may be calculated from where 0. 1 e k = Observad frequency in each class = Expected frequency in a uniform distribution with equal class intervals = Number of pairs of frequencies to be compared . The number of of freedom is the number of minus above analysis, with k = 36. e = 4.92, df = 35, and probability level of 0.05, the calculated value of O. is 711153111 1


73 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 If this value is equalled in any test interva+, the observed distribution may be considered to depart significantly from the model of uniformjty. A pecked circle of diameter units is on the rose diagram. It wili:be seen from the rose diagram that significant or i en ta ons occur within the classes from 3 0 0 to 3 4 0 . It w i 11 be of the limbs of the lelet Fault are , and 328 • class with the frequenqy is that from 320 to 324 the former figura being the approximjte orientation of the lelet fault at Laranbut. A0 significant occurs in the class 330. to 334 • Th$ overall topographic dip of scarp from the high plateau to the village area is at 328 • It can be seen that there are no significant grientation classes at the value of the tectonic dip (38 ), which Williams (1972) to control the orientation of the depressions in the he studied. Tha impltcations of this are that the karst depressions may have de0$loped since widespread faulting occurred. If the karst depressions had developed prior to faulting, then it might be expected'that their orientation would follow that of the dip slope. It is therefore likely that the karst has developed fully since the Plei9tocene (Hohnen, 1970), this being a maximum age for the karst landforms. To achieve this, the rate of denudation must be Oepressi6n slopes appear wholly concave from aerial this is due to the increase in forest height towards the floor. Within the depressions, visibility is reduced to 20 oi:30 metres because of the dense forest and low light intensity. Centripetal incised gullies drain to a central located at the base of a bedrock step up to 4 m high. The groHnd is covered with a thin mat of leaves, branches and dispersed clay. In the Danasing.area depression relief is reduced= a clay plug is often present. This results in the of long, shallow gullies leading to central sink points are frequently small, unenterable holes among boulders. A large number of depressions have mid slope cliffed segments. The cliff is frequently overhung and the exposed bedrock is fretted and carious. Minor rillenkarren, often choked with moss are on the upper edges of the cliffs. The ground below the cliff is frequently a steep slope comprised of an unsorted mass of small boulders in a clay matrix. Bedrock shafts may be present-if a major joint is present. Seepage moisture is normally: present and there is an active basal sapping. The of this seepage water was determined by Stenner's (1971) method at twenty five sites in the Lababat area: mean was 382 ppm Caco3 , standard deviation 56 ppm. This very high value indicative of the high rate of chemical denudation proceedihg in the area. Each sample was saturated with powdered. A. R. grade aC03 , hardness determined by the same : mean 415 ppm Caco 3 , standard deviation 21 ppm. This demonstrates that the seepage water is close to sa tura te9 with respect to caco.3. N I U G I N I CA \/ER \! 0 l iJ M E 5 NU M B ER 3 ORI.ENT NrIONS ORIENTATIONS LONG .AXES Olf' KARfu"T DEPRESSIONS i NUMBER OF Preferred cf depression long etructural features part of the Lelet major 74 ii lELEf f.AUlT


75 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 This seepage water is derived from bedrock solution on the slope above the cliffed segment. The upper slope is invariably convex, tpe degree of convexity apparently increasing with depression depth. The ground is covered by a dense root mat. No evidence of negative geotrophism was seen, suggesting that surface soil creep may be minimal. The ridge crests are frequently narrow (less than 3m) and may have residual joint blocks of limestone up to 4m high protruding through the root the soil has been removed from the bases of these limestone residuals, well developed rundkarren are A mull rendzina soil is present in small pockets on the limestone. On wider parts of the ridge crests, broad, circular depressions up to 2m deep are found. These no visible outlet and appear to be solutional to the 'seepage hollows• of Bunting (1961). Below the. cliffed segment is a predominantly concave toeslope by shallow anastomosing gullies up to 50cm deep. Bare soil' is exposed on the toeslope and is typically a heavy plastic 9lay even on steep segments (angle greater than 30). Trees more widely spaced and there is evidence of ,. cavitatiqn around the root risers. Where depression relief is low (such as in the Oanasing area) slopes to be rectilinear and lack a deep root mat, bare being exposed close to.tbe ridge crest. The larger compound (such as Lababat and Sunamokola) have floors of puddled clay and support a lush . vegetation. Such depressions have at least crte cliffed side9 the cliff being up to 20m high. At the base of the North cliff of several gullies sink into tight, sepentinous cave The cliff is undercut by structures analogous to 'swamp slots' (Jennings, 1972). At the base of the cliffs are short, high angle toeslopes composed of angular limestone debris and a clay loam soil. This is considered to be the result of mass wasting. The cliffs are often the site of small springs emerging from the bedding planes. These tend to cause soil conditions at the cliff foot and must aid in basal sapping.'-'" The cliffed segments in the Lababat area show na clear distrib ution, onrone side of a depression chain ror at any fixed elevation. This is in accordance with the findings of Aub (1972) who considered that aspect and stratigraphy alone did not explain the distribution of cliffed depression sides. The Dana$.ing area is characterised by low slope angles and large depressions of low relief (10 to 20m). Depressions are of higher order than either the Laranbut or Lababat areas. The area is bounded \o the North and South by low scarps which appear to have a origin. It is therefore likely that the Danasing area is a zone of sediment accumulation and the depressions are . This is consistent with the well developed drainage channelsi lack of bedrock outcrop and choked sinks. The high plateau experiences a weather pattern which ensures that thesoil remains at or above field capacity. Cloud builds up over the plateau during the morning and develops instability in the early afternoon resulting in heavy showers of rain. Approximately every three or four days in the midyear period or every day in the •summer', heavy rain persists all day. NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 76 Most of this rainfall is intercepted by the tree canopy, and amalgamates to fall to the ground as large droplets. On the dense root mat of the ridge crest these droplets infiltrate rapidly and surface water flow is absent. Below the cliffed segment and on the lower slopes the droplets cause widespread disaggregation of the bare soil intosu-spended clay. This suspended clay is entr,ained in the rilled flows that result from the emergence of or stem flow 1967). The 9ro4nd loss is considerable and is termed •.splash erosion' {de1Ploey and de Savat, 1968). The rilled flows concentr4te in the anastomosing and carry the entrained to the It was noted that during the first few of "heavy rainfall the rilled ,flows and gully flows were turbid with clay, but after rainfall had cohtinued for some time became markedly less indicating entralned • " The.;hardness of the aete:fr:Hnei:i by (1971) yielding a mean value of 28 ppm (10 samplss) at the comm,encement of flow and a mean value of 9 ppm after 20 ni1nutes had elapsed. The two groups of flow samples saturated at and 86 .ppm CaC03 respectively •. The initial high values of may be related to the addition of ions from humus. It is. , int•resting that this flow water, although aggressive, has a far lower total capacity for uptake of dissociated.Caco at than the seepage water from the midslops seepaae (wh1ch saturated at 416 ppm). , . . '. Caves of the high fall into one of three categories: 1. Shafts aligned along joints These are common in depressions in the Laranbut area and in the higher parts of the Sunon area. The walls of bedrock shafts arefrequently pitted and unstable due to the unrecrystallized natqre of limestone. Many shafts at depth aloQg bedding planes and frequently choke in boulder or clay 2. Serpentinous vadose passages Most depressions observed on high plateau contained bedrocik leading to tight, serpentinous passages which ... -81-fher in clay fills or ,dee!'. eased markedly in siz1:1 aft:er :-a few. metres. They show strong bedding plane control oVer. the main and a series of intersecting joints. The'. rate of : of solutional activity underground is marked •. a large entrance up Sm high and 3m. will rapidly narrow to a slot than 2m higM and 30cms wide, within 20m passage length. 3. Major vadose caves of high such as Sunamokola and are;drained by extensive vadose systems. In their elevations thS?e caves reflect the control of bedding (seen in'the sub.horizontal main passage) and of fauits frequent steps in the long profile). All major tributary passages at depth with small (less than cumec) flows." These flows may, however, permit the maintenance of activity through the agency of mixing corrosion (Bogli, 1964). It is likely that the springs on the North East coast fed by underground stream networks.


References Aub, c. F. 1972, : The Nature of Cockpits and Other Depressions in the Karst of Jamaica. Proc. IX I.U.S. Stuttgart. Bogli, A. 1964, : Mischungskorrosion : ein Beitrag zum Verkarstungsproblem. Erdkunde, 18(2) 83 -92. Bunting, 80 J., 1961, The Role of Seepage Soil rormation, Slope Development and Stream Initiation. American Journal of Science9 259 : 503 -518. Hohnen, P.w. 1970, : Geology of New Ireland. B. M •. R. Ree. 70/49 (unpublished). Jennings, J. N. 19729 : Karst. A. N. LI. Press. de Ploey, J. and de Savat, 1968, : Contribution a l'etude de lf er9sion par le splash. ?• f. 12 : 174 93. Ruxton, B.:P. 19671 : Slopewash Under Primary Rainforest in Northern Papua. pp. 85 -94 in Jennings, J. N. and J. A., : Landform Studies trom Australia aqd New Guinea, Canberra, A.N.U. Press. Shannon, c. H. 'c .• 1976, Physiography. pp. 102 106 in Bourke, M .• , Le let Report of the 1975 New Ireland '• Expedition, Niugini Caver:, 4(3) : 85 -136. D. 1971, : The Measurement of the Aggressiveness pf to Carbonate. Cave Res. Grp. Gt. B •. , 13(4) : 283 295. w. 1972, : Morphometric Analysis of Polygonal Karst in Guinea. Gaol. Soc. of Amer. 83 : 761 -796. * General References Beran, 1976, : Preliminary Notes from a Biospeleological Trip to New Ireland. Niugini Caver .. , 4(1) .: 27 30. Bourke, R. M. 1974, : Some Caves of the Lelet Plateau, New Niugini Caver, 2(3) : 212 221. Bourke, R. M. 1976. Lelet : Report of the 1975 New Ireland . Expedition. 4(3) : 85 136, Shannon c. H. c. 1976, : Physiography. PP• 102 106 in Bourke, R. M;, : Lelet.: Ra.port of the 1975 New Ireland Expedition, Niugini 4(3) : 85 136. Wilde, A. 1975, : More Caves of the Lelet Plateau -New Ireland. Niugini Caver:, 3(1) : 6 12. E.:ditor's Note_ This issue of Niugini Caver is devoted to the report of the 1976 New treland Expedition, and will form the record_ this Coordinators of expeditions are invitd to submit the reports of their expeditions.for publicati6n as a special edition of benifit$ of this efe. twofold; firstly to the editor, who , . interestiMg matBrial for Niugini Caver, and expedition who are saved of pro.ducing a sspar.ate volume and the marketing'. problems. The circulation of Niugini Caver ensues a wide coverage such reports to most speleologists New Organisers are invited to contact the Editnr if they wish to DESCRIPTIONS s. tJilson1<, R. Cant yH, J. Landsberg t, D. Gillies on+, -R. • COASTAL CAVES:. (Pum Hill) N10 . G. R. 890428 50m above sea level near Pum Hill, about 1km south Dalum. Entrance chamber 2m high, then roof becomes lower with most passages less than a metre high. From the entrance the stream passage forks into a number of small' fight passages which.all sump. Passages are well decorated with small and ' Meabin N11 collapse cavern 100m above .level arid fro.fil the coast behind Oalum. Shaft of 30m diameter runs down top of a pile of collapse debris 26m below surface. is cone. shaped, opening 45m at the base of ,pitch. base of pitch 20m down debris pile to the entrance of a > large passage 19m high and wide which slopes upwards and: nartows. There is a bat colony in this passage •. ' ' G. R. . . . . . is located in a large.doline to.the epst of -Limbin road, atan altitude of 350m. A; steep talus slope extends from the entrance to the base of the main rift alohg bedding planes. small on the ' tals slope are encrusted with grey flowstone. Af:the 6f tna: slope is a silt floored chamber with a profusion. of short st•lactites-nn the walls and.the A short climb_ through covered boulders gives access to the main wa emerges at a number of points f'rom the base. of .. rockp1le which was pushed unsuccessfully. The was estimated at 0.3 cumecs and according to local informants varies little with the seasons. The clear cold water tumbles amongst boulders for less than 10m to the lip of a 3m waterfall over flowstone. At this point the passage enlarges and the water fills the whole width of the as a pool some 1 to 2 metres deep. The cross section of the passage at and downstream of this point indicated flow conditions. It .is to proceed downstream for some thirty metres paet shingle banks, to a point where the roof dips 309ms.of the After this constriction it is to into the final sump where the roof height nowhere 1 metre. The water appears to flow on unrestricted and th' sump may be a dipping of the roof i.e. is cave is well known to local in Dalum village and is.a water source on the route Oalum Limbin. * Ouse, Australia. " 232 Scrub Rd., : Belmont, Brisbane, Queensland,. Australia. ' 5 Arthur Si., Beaudesert, Queensland, Australia. + Dept. of Geography, Uni. of Qld., st. Lucia, Queensland. • 72 Pelican St., Townview, Mt. Isa, Queensland, Australia.


79 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 Dalum Efflux Cave N33 G. R. 850407 Undoubtedly one of the chief delights of the expedition was total immersion in the cold crystal clear water of the Dalum 2 cumecs of this excellent fluid a series of vertical joints at the base of a coralline limestone cliff, some 200 upstream of the road bridge at Oalum village. The western most cleft can be followed three hundred metres of sub parallel rifts to a point where the presence of a large banded coral .snake deterred further exploration. The rifts typically 1 to 1.5 metres wide and ledges at or below the level of the deep water which filled the rifts to within 2 metres of the roof. At the point where one rift closed tjpwn, it was usually possible to gain entry to a sub -. . parallel rift via a natural porthole, 1 metre in diameter. A few shori stalactites and minor flowstones were present in roof pockets. The coralline limestone is extremely sharp and jagged loose in places. The 'main' entrance to the system was behind large collapse blocks the base of the 15 metre cliff. Behind was a low rocifed chamber with a series of water filled anastomasing trenches the floot. The flow pattern in these trenches was extremely complexi Trenches could be followed down rifts to a either $ narrowing of the rift or a talus blockage. One such : rift be followed for a hundred metres to a large stream an estimated flow of 1 cumec. The water over shoit flowstone drops and around breakdown blocks, in a passage •ome 6 metres wide 3 metres high. was . at several points. this passage terminated in a large sump chamber were the estimated water depth was 2Dm. A short. passage could be traversed to a point where a major flow of issued from the base of the wall. This point coijld be with difficulty, from a smaller loop off main chamber,, A 11 the rifts in this cave had w.alls coa teq in a thih layer of extremely fine grained mud. This hindered explorat;an as movement Gas necessarily by wide bridging. The pattern of water flows in the cave was extremely complex and confusing.One would head upstream for a few metres,reach a non-visible then proceed dowhstream all in the same rift. The reason for this is held to be the cross seqtion of the cave. Essentially the enterable passage was a series of clefts in the roof of a large submerged 'phreatit' cavern, whose flow was consistently to the sea. The flow patterns in the enterable passages were eddy currents. in these roof pockets. Fresh water emerges as discrete and soaks for several hundred metres either side of the Oalum mouth, and this water is held to be the result of this submerged conduit. The sea water is potable for a ' distance.of 50 from the mouth of the river. Thus the visible flow in the Oalum river may be but a fraction of the total of the hydrologic network. The upstream extensions of this tmain drain' for the Lelet plateau must be a sizeable cave system and the whole area would repay more intensive Resurgence North of Lemeris G. R. 920415 Located at the north end of Lemeris beach. This is the only enterable one of a group of effluxes at the foot of a cliff. Passages about 2m wide and 3m high. Stream O.Sm wide and. 0.3m deep. Roqf slopes down to a sump 6m from entrance. NlllGINI CAVER YOUIME 5 NUMBER 3 I rocks/ large 'f '9' s'tites N 11 MEABIN 1:soo 0 5 10 15 20m 11111! I I I I I 0 IO I S! I I 0 N I IO N I I 0 IO (") .;... (")


t,.HUGINI CAVER VO 5 NUMBE H __....., z-N33 DALUM 0 5 II II II 1:500 10 I 15 I 20m I


NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 N37 MERAKAMBILIN 1:500 o 5 10 15 20m I• I \ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ I I ' , I I \ I x x x --------\ \ I I \ ' ,,, ' ' ' ' ' ' ' '\ ,,, ,, t ,, ,, \\ N \ \ I ?


NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME S NUMBER 3 N34 DANMIN 1:500 0 5 I II f1 I 15 I 20m I sump


b.G 6. Climbhble 10m shaft leads to rock choke. Very shatp, friable rock. G' R II 20m pitch terminates in a tight water sump, Between G, R. 908357 and G. R. 915351 1. 10m climb and 15m pitch both lead to a small rock chamber, 2. Three 2m climbs lead to a small chamber with a loose rocky floor. G. R, 915351 Gully leads to a large entrance. 1 m climb to small terminal chamber. impassable crawls leading off, Three Features in the Area G, Ro 915 925E and 35.36N (partiallj obscured by cloud on the photomap 1. Sm climb leads to main entrance chamber with 1m crawl off to 3m climb and terminal small collapse chamber, 2. Canyon-like depression with cliffed sides9 separated by a bridgirg rock buttress in the middle. Deepest section not entered, dirt floor seen about 20m down9 no apparent cave entrances in floor. 7m climb to floor of second from here a 10m pitch in one corner leads to a mud sump. 3. 15m pitch to floor of a very steep sided depression. Small in one side leads to 80m of meandering passage 10m high and 1m wide. Eventually tapers to a small impass$ble passage. Sunon Area Sunamokol? L83 G. R. 895323 This located about 1.5km SSW of lababat. A hunting track from Lababat through a .short canyoA into a gully. Closer examination of the heavily vegetated(gully reveals a spectacular daylight hole. Twenty five metres further south a walk in entrance is found9 also taking the flow of a deep gully. Two pitches of 6 and 3 metres lead to the floor below the daylight hole. During subsequent visits daylight hole was rigged as a 22m pitch. The high humidity moss -fern cover of the hole create a sight when viewed from the cave. A short section of lofty passage with muddy breakdown leads to a wash.ed vadose passage, with periodic accumulations of Several short pitches are encountered and some low passage is tightly serpentinous. A wet 4m abseil leads into the final chamber which contains a muddy sump. Canty swam on belay to the end of the sump pool but no way on was detected, Extensive mud banks in the chamber would not be moved in flood flows and seem stable. Lemerigamas LBS G. R. 895313 This is deep pave\system. A long gully, deeply 1 incised9 is joined by a shorter steeper gully Within the same'. depression. The incised gully sinks amongst boulders at the base of a low limestone cliff. A crawl over boulders leads to a short cobble floored passage which rapidly tightens to an inclined rift. At the end of this narrow rift is a 6 metre pitch to a small gravel floored chamber, From this point the rift is followed for 50 metres to a 4,5 metre pitcho The rift is sinuous and constricted at the necessitatinq 0 t I I I 'I• ? L82 1:100 2 I NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 N10 PUM HILL (LAMLAMSIK) guano mound 3high unstable 1:500 O 5 10 15 20m \x x \ \x x x ' x x x l x x I x I I \X x \ \ x x x \ \0 x x x pool x x x ... ... .. I mud L84 : ; low entrance 3p d't ::t:1 .... , ' \ \ \ \ \


deep pool NIUGINI VOLUME 5 CHAMBER 18mhigh s R N I L83 SO 0 5 I 1 II 1J 1 :500 10 I 15 I LA 20m J


,, Ii traversing. At the base of the pitch a passage enters from the left this influent was not explored. The passage at this point is three metres wide and five metres .high, floored with boulders and sandy clay. The eerpentinoua rift continues past a series of short climbs and a 6 metre pitch to a constriction, beyond which is a 4.8 metre pitch to the main stream passage. The stream passage at this point is 5 metres wide and 6 metres high, with some decoration, The passage cross section is The flow meandets across the gravel Qf the floor. This gravel fill deepens some 60 metres down. stream, necessitating a watery crawl. The passage becomes a tall,' narrow rift for another 100 metres to a flowstone constriction. This is bypassed by a roof traverse. Downstream a small tributary enters from the right and the passage dimen$ions increase rapidly. The elliptical crosssection is regained and the passage continues for another 100 metres to top of a deep pitch. The passage roof in this section is covered in a profusion of straw stalactites and white flowstone well developed. The final pitch remains undespended. A ledge could be discerned at roughly 15 metree, Any descent would be in the full force of the water at D.1 cumec). The stream passage plan shows meanders of two scales of amplitudes; the small amplitude serpentinous mBanders contribute greatly to the awkwardness of the upper section, whilst the larger meanders direct the cave system away to the south east of the entrance. This direction is surprising as it was thought that a major cave system wciuld tend towards the Dalum resurgence. The passage cross sections are reminiscent of pressure tube phenomena than phreatic passage shapes. Large water precluded entry the cave fc llowing heavy in the wet would be difficult. Labapivilis L86 G. R. 896310 This short but interesting system is located some 250 metres from Lemerigamas LB5. The northern most entrance is a horizbntal slot at the base of a Sm over hanging cliff. A leads into the entrance and continues inside as a floor trench. The passage as _a narrow rift to an awkard drop of 7m. Below this drop, the rift continues to a junction with a major leading from the southern mo$t This latter enirance is gained by a short climb. A descent over guano leads to a 2m climb, below the passage is floored with collapse boulders. The passage descends with short climbs and traverses to a flowstone . At this point a stream enters from a side passage, but way on is too tight. The side passage carryin9 the stream can be fbllowed upstream. An ascending watery crawl boulders leads to a constriction. Past this, the passage height .increases as does the passage width, Above a climb pf Sm is a broad, rock floored stream passage with a floor ; and minor flowstone. After 10 metres this leads to the . entrance, which takes the drainage from a long gully. is suspected that the influent tributary passages in are tha downstream continuations of systems to labapivilis,. It is possible that the stream in Pivilis feeds into Lemerigamas. 4 lies lead to a large entrance .. 6m climb to a flat floor continues about 5m horizontally. A small squeeze leads a tight sloping passage for Sm; flowstone


90 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 G. R. 903318 A gully to a large entrance. 2m climb leads to 1Dm steeply slpping passage with gravel floor, then to 5m climb and mud sump. G. R. 901315 A gully leads to a large entrance. 4m climb leads to a tight rocky crawl which goes down to a tight meandering stream passage (3m wide x o.s 1m high); leads to water sump. Total traverse distance 60m. G. R. 910309 2Dm pitch to 30m of low tight stream passage choked by formation. Probably connects with nearby 10m pitch. G t R. 915309 3m climb leads to flat dirt f looq 2 chambers about: Orn high, 5m diameter. Large number of swiftlets nesting. G" R. 917,310 Short squeeze leads to small active streamway which becomes too tight.after 12m. G. R. 907314 1m climb leads to 10m free hanging pitch into di chamber about Sm in diameter. Three Karst Features in the Area 905/915E and 315/320N 1. Frsm entrance a tight passage runs down PJ..,8.fae a.t 70 for 20m, then into a low, tight stneam 2. Two 10m climbs lead to a small collapse 3. Sm chiwney leads t6 a well decorated Sm wide. 9• R. 903312 Two gullies leading to a shaft Line of 0ressions from G R Six in a north/south line. choked, one draughting but unentera leading to mud sumps. Dana sing Area. L84 G, R: 895337 10m shaft" down to the middle of a wide. Small holes in the floor passage :runs off at right angles G. R. 90034q 3 shafts (30m) lead Six Karst Features in the Area 1. Oanasing water source. Two at prominent break of slope. approximately 200 litres here leads acros Bungaring .. 2 .. 2m en --.... llllllllB > --A. c( ma cc .... -0 co .... 0 lC') N ,... E 0 ,... -=4 z' I 0 II> I I c 0 :;::: 0 0 (J 0 -CJ) ,... II) c .9 0




NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 93 3. 6m wide mud slide in to tight serpentinous passage. 4. Cliff foot a large depression with two gullies. Small pressure tJJbe to constriction .... opens beyond for 3m. Good phreatic pendants. s. Thtee gullies lead to a sink in a large depraBsion. Enirancc leads to a muddy streamway (1.Sm,hLgh). 4m of .rock pile halfway in. Passage continues as a nartow rift: wit_h flowstone and keyholes. Water enters from flowsti:fne choked on the left; main passage blocks in Traverse distance 5Dm. 6. Major sink. 3m climb to constricted streamway. Likely connection with 5 •• of Depressions from G. R. 894355 to G, R. 892363 1. 9mclirnb to flowstone chamber; mud floor with unenterable tubes. 2. Twp shafts that connect at -5 metres. 16m pitch to a tight sage. 3. Two drops of 40m lead to a tight, serpentinous. rift. 411 Three gullies lead to a muddy sink and small spring. Small ontrance in the side of the depression leads to 30m dry passage 2m x 1m wide, then through a hole in the floor to a tight.streamway downstream and 4m upstream ta a .small daylight hole. CONCLUSIONS D. S. Gillieson It is always a source of satisfaction if significant caves are found during the course ofa speleological expedition. Althqugh the caves found by the 1976 N.I.S.E. were modest'by world standards$ those who explored them found the experience enjoyable and stimulating. New Ireland must be one of the pleasant places in the world in which to explore. Some measure oF the success oF the expeditlon can also De from the possibilities it presents for further work. In this respect the expedition has raised several in'b:iguing The downstream continuation of Lemerigamas, and the' upstream continuation of the Dalurn resurgences are both_exoiting for another expedition. It is suggested however, that such an expedition be small and effective. Since 1974 approximately three to four hundrod karst depressio'ns havo been ontorod on thG Lelut :jlateau. These, have Yielded several significant caves. Hundreds more await It is felt that selection of specific from the excellent aerial photography may be m9re productive than a random sample however large. The relative ease of access and depth potential must surely make the a -suitable target for a small, low budget expedition able to m•intain itself for at least a month. on the plateau should not be sacrificed for base camp comfort. Several water sources exist and are adequate for up to ten persons. All the members of ,the expedition would go againgiven the : we an enjoyable time, health was good, lasting friendships were made and some useful work was done. Speleology needs no more iustification.


94 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 Lighting EQUIPMENT .S. Wilson Members of expedition used carbide lamps (cap lamps or hand held ones) and electric cap lamps, the latter being reservep for wet caves, surveying etc while was to be the chief light source. The electric lights used were all CTl::hnm or MSA miner's cap lamps. The wet cells were removed and replaced with 6 volt metal case Mallory marine cells (M918). The standard bulbs in the lamps were all replaced by 6v, o.3 amp globes which extended the continuous life of the battery to about 19 hours. Simple rgged battery holders were contructed as follows. A large Utilux worm screw hose clip was clamped around the . battery parallel to, and about 5mm below, the top rim. Harness D rings threaded on the clamp were used to attach the battery to a belt or sling. A small tinplate bracket threaded on the clamp and passing over the top of the battery held the end of the lamp flex and prevented it being torn away from the battery terminals. Tha dry cell batteries were wider than the wet cells they replacedi and were consequently more awkard in tight passages, but they were satisfactory in all other ways. The lamps did not suffer from prolonged total immersion nor did they develop bad connections. Since they were very simple a minimum of spare parts was required to ensure that all lamps were in working order. Vertical Gear The f ollpwing ropes and ladders were taken9 Bluewater II 5 x 50m Bluewater III 3 x 15m 1 x 40m 1 x 20m 1 x 13m Mamut 4 x 1Dm Ladders 2 x 10m The ropes were used Total Total Total more often. 368m 40m 20m Thanks are due to the University of Queensland Speleological Society (UQSS), Southern Caving Society (scs) and Leigh Gleeson who loaned ropes and ladders. Other ropes were owned by expedition members. Because of the sharpness of the Lelet limestone, good rope protectors were essential •. The expedition used the canvas rope described by Montgomery (19?7) which proved . entirely satisfactory. A number of wire headers (loaned by SCS and expedition members) proved valuable in reducing protection problems at the top of many pitches. All members of the expedition used jumars and whaletail descenders. Few new problems were encountered with this gear. Reference Montgomery, N. R. 19771 Single Rope Techniques. Sydney Speleolo9ical Society Occasional Paper No. 7


0 10 20 30 40 50 NIOOINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 long Sections 1:500 O 5 10 15 20m L85 LEMERAGAMAS L83 SUNAMOKOLA 20: B 30 40' 50. 57


NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME S NUMBER _SURVEY I NG s. LJilson, 95 Suunto compasses and clinometers and 'fibron' tapes were used. Two complete sets of surveying instruments were taken. The compasses and clinometers were prone to fogging, which causep some difficulty at times. Survey notes were taken in waterproof surveyors notebooks. The was fairly waterproof but the binding was inadequate arid the books tended to disintegrate. were=Aumbered usino metal tags held in place by masonry screws, Hand drills were used to drill the screw holes'. " ... .. PHOTOGRAPHY s, Wilson Several different brandsof 35mm SLR cameras were used by the expedition members. Trouble was experienced with film sticking on wind-on spools and many films were spoilt. Unless film was to be exposed and rewound quickly (within one day) it was essential to keep the camera in an air tightcontainer with silica gel. F'OOD_ J. Landsberg The amount of food taken was calculated on 200 man-days for cavers and 100 man-days A typical daily menu Breakfast K and/or porridge(with rniik and sugar) Biscuits, bread or damper with various spreads , Stew of tin meat, soup and pasta (which deolined quickly in popularity) kunch Sardines, cheese, chocolate, nuts, lollies, cabin bread or sweet biscuits Dinner Stew of textured vegetable proteiD, pasta, dried vegetables, flavoured with packet.soups or sauces Boiled custard and stewed fruit. Choice of tea, . coffee, milo, cocoa as beverages Emplqyees had a daily ration of 4509 rice, 1409 tinned and 2 cabin bread biscuits, plus tea and sugar, and theor,etically, 10 cigarettes. Cigarette rationing was not rigorously followed because of varying preferences on the part of and unprecedented demand on the part of cavers. Emplqyeas usually shared lunch, but were not very with breakfast or dinner. Fresh food (oranges9 spring onions and taro) was only obtained once; but made a welcome chang&. l Quantities taken proved sufficient, with no item running short (except tobacco and potato flakes) and most items, especially beverages9 in excess. This was largely due to the generosity of Dave Larkin and Heather Anderson during the fiva days spent on the coast during which time expedition stores were litt,le used. Excess food was given to the villagE:IS .who intended 'to sell it and give procf1eds. to the


s : NIUGINI CAVER S Main criticism of catering was the lack of variety in the menu but this lack of variety considerably simplified calculations of quantities and allowed maximum use of donated foods. * GUIDES AND CARRIERS J. Landberg Some 26 villages in the halfday carry from Limbin to Lababat anq 8 assisted in the return. They were paid K3 and a food and cigarette ration. Loads were in 15 20kg units, packed in duffle bags and copra sacks, with the duffle bags being much less unwieldy. Four.guides {Lentuang, Liman, Stephen Enoch, and Thomas Tekaina) were employed for most of the time on the plateau the rate. Blankets were also provided as the plateau is colder than the villages. The men returned to the villages on Sundays. All four proved capable and willing. Thomas and lentuang were familar with much of the Danasing-Lababat area from hunting trips and gave valuable assistance. CAMPING J. Landsberg Camping ar.rangements for the five days spent at the coast were generously provided by Dave Larkin and Heather Anderson. Sleeping guarters (in the Haus Win at Lamerika) were cool and comfortable and hospitality was lavish in the extreme. On the plateau Lababat campsite was chosen for its reliable water source, though later exploration discovered at least four other good water sources. The campsite was.on relatively groumd in the depression, but.quickly became muddy. Flies were a problem on the few sunny days. Shelters were of the plastic sheeting and sapling type and were adequate. Steeply sloping roofs reduced water ponding. Three shelters were a communal sleep out and gear storage one, a cooking.shelter and kitchen, and a sleeping shelter for the Gear was stored on sapling shelves to keep it dry and above the mud. Most cavers quickly followed the guides• example and constructed sapling beds for the same reason. f'lEDI J. Landsberg The contehts of the medical kit wete broken into three units; a large base medical kit containing a wide range of medicaments and dressings; and two small, clearly labelled first aid: kits for use in the field. These contained emergency dressings and pain killers stored in screw top, waterproof, unbreakable plastic containers. They were carried at all times by all parties away from camp. No serious illnesses occurred during the trip, although lentuang cut his foot severly with a machete. This was dressed on the spot and he was able to walk back to base with frequent rests. No.infection resulted and he was not easily persuaded NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 98 to take a rest day the following day. The usefulness of the first aid kits was demonstrated here, since without quick treatment, the blood loss. may have been serious. All cavers suffered frequent minor cuts which were cleaned then treated with e vine which proved adequate in most cases. More severe cuts were dressed with neosporin dusting powder or ointment and adhesive dressing strip. One caver with persistent infections took a course of Achrostatin antibiotics to which the ihfection quickly responded. No first aid items were in short supply and many were not used. A copy of the contents is available from t.he expedition co ordinator if requested. Although all cavers took Chloroquin or Nivaquine antimalarials beforet during and after the trip, one caver{Stewart Wilson) was found, on return, to have contracted malaria. Stretcher It not possible to borrow a suitable so one was .. stretcher had to be suitable 6ave rescue and surface carrying, As a starting point a WW II surplus field stretcher was ac:quired, It was made of canvas and stiffened with wooden slats alorig the back and down the legs. Flaps on the stretcher over the victim's chest and legs to hold him There were four carrying loops attached, As the stiffening slats did not run the full length of the stretcher, it was possible to benq. the stretcher and manouvre it along tight bendy passages. In fts original state1 however, the stretcher was totally unsuitable for hauling an injured person up a pitch or for transporting a victim with a broken back, hip, neck etc where it +s essential that there be as little bending or movement of the body as possible. To overcome the prcblem of rigidity a 150 x 25mm pine board running the full length of the stretcher was bolted underneath the back of the stretcher. If it was found necessary to bend the stretcher this boar.d coulp be quickly unbolted and removed. To make the stretcher suitable for hauling up a pitch, a footboard was bolted to the foot of the stretcher. This supported the victim's feet. the weight of his was not all taken under his by the flaps across his chest when the stretcher was vertical. The footboard was adjustable to suit the height of the injured Hauling loops of climbing webbing were sewn onto the so that it could hauled vertically up a narrow chimney if necessary. Thus modified the stretcher was light and and suitable for both underground and surface work$


99 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 J. Landsberg All insured with ISIS Travel Insurance (obtained through AUS Travel). When an extra premuim is paid fo7 a.mountaineering benefit (under which caving is covered), this hospital and medical expenses, death and disability, extra travelling expenses, luggage to $300 (or $600}, and expenses of rescue and transport to nearest place of sufficient medical treatment. The policy is open t? non and the cost of 31 45 days cover (world wide) was.$19.00 in 1976. The only claim by any expedition member was for a damaged camera and the full claim was paid with the minimum delay. BASIC CONVERSATIONAL LELET This listing was compiled by Dave Gillieson after consulati9n Stephen Enoch and Thomas Tekaina. Spelling follows.established rules for Nee-Melanesian and was given by the informants. food itemsg Greetingsg Nounsg Useful Lun L1muli L1rauka:u La was Lem pas Lakdang Lemegei Ladan Labo Lasisi Magantamak Ukantina Kareiwamo Laranuna La raring Lugu Larangu Lemenemen Laumarat Lawatlapun Laman Luwurau Bananas Oranges Sweet potato A piece of taro Several pieces of taro Cassava Type of taro LJater Pig Snake Good Morning Good afternoon How are you? Forest Bush House Several houses Village Young man Old man or woman Dog Young man Come here quicklyl You camel Sosoude Ude Nambatpas Maybe he comes, maybe not, I don't kno1.i1. We go Unaunon You go Togompatia Give me Lawastia Give me Abaraba U Me Togompa Huwa ra togompa? .Nambaraba U Nambaraba Di Hatarabara Di Mangaraba Di some food some taro I will give you some You want some food? He will give you He will give them We will give them He gave them food Numbers NIUGINt CAV[R VOLUME 5 S Gan He ate, We ate, Miran We (excl) ate .A.nain I drink, Unain You d_rink, et.c .• Naminde He sleeps Nawas He walks Unawas lararing You walk in Nen-ya I am, Nenu You are, Nani He is, :_ Nama We are Ganeni He was Ganenya I was Gaminde He slept Pam Already, thus Gan pam H-0 ate already Ne Of Lamane Thomas the dog of Thomas Kopmen No Annh Yes Igokaukat Thank you Tino Very much Iepovo Enough, that•s it La and Ladan wa Where is the water? Nomeso capo It's over there Ladan A The water is here Laman Wa? Lamanum Meso Capo A ban Uto The dog is over there I eat, Uban You eat, Namban He eats Naunan Uta Iepovo, una Nenula Nenulem Ne run Neuvet' Nslimo Neona Uti Uan Sik Sanganun There ' He goes there rabe ia mi •••••••• Please can you give me ••••••• One Two Three F'our Five Six Seven Eight Nine Ten Larau An established fire Logonka A burning branch Soro From Thomas bore Bunaring Thomas from Bunaring ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS organisations assisted the expedition: Kraft foods Ltd. tinned cheese and vegemite Rowntree Hoadley Ltd. donated confectionery, appreciated by and the children.of the Lelet Cadbury Schweppes Ltd. donated chocolate and cocoa Lifesavers (Qld.) Pty. Ltd. also donated chocolate Kellogg:> Aust. Pty. Ltd. donated a generous supply of Special K breakfast cereal Sanitarium Health Food Co. donated generous amounts of textured vegetable protein and dried fruit, which kept the . expedition moving Harry Peck and Co. (Aust.) donated tinned sardines1 meats and pastes


101 NIUGINI CAVER VOLUME 5 NUMBER 3 Mallory Batteries (Aust.) Pty. Ltd. donated the reliable M918 batteries The Nestle Co. {Aust.) Ltd,, donated powdEIDd milk, fUlo and coffee John Swire and Sons Pty. Ltd. provided free cargo shipping to Rabaul The Paddy Pallin Foundation provided a grant of $2UU for equipment Websters Biscuit Co. gave a discount on their products Trumps Nwt Merchants gave a good discount on their praducts9 which were specially packed for the expedition Press Pty. Ltd. gave a large discount on books for the Lenkamin school Steamships Trading Co., Rabaul gave a discount on grocery items Civil Rabaul, provided two transceivers and a base camp in case of We sincerely thank all of the whose generosity made the possible. The Souttjern Caving Society {Tasmania) loaned ropes and wire belays ' Rick White. Experience (Brisbane} assisted in the production of underground packs Dave Larkin and Heather Anderson of lamerika Plantation overwhelmed us with their hospitality9 and by providing transport made the move to the plateau incredibly easy. Our stay on the coast was exceedingly pleasant and this was largely tjue to their efforts. The counqillors and people of the Lelet Plateau welcomed our pre s _enc$ , ad v i s e d and guided us , and were ext r em Bly h o spit able • We offer;our sincere thanks to them all. Last but not least, our guides Thomas Tekaina, Lentuang Mesularn,:Liman Benson and Steven Enock. Without their capable assistance we would have been fireless, caveless and lost! NEW CONTRIBUTORS Bob is a cartographer and his skills have been applied in the documention and exploration of caves in his home state of Queensland. He is a foundation member of Gilt}eson is a geomorphologist currently engaged in research"!n He has caved in Australia and New Zealand and led ,A expedition to New in 1975, Jill Landsberg teaches biology and chemistry and is keen on exploratdry caving. A member of U,Q.s.s., has caved in Tasmania, New Zealand, New Caledonia and Norway. Ralph worked as a full time caver (paid!) while document.trig the Chillagoe caves. An electrician and member of c.c.c., he combines caving with sitting on tropical beaches mending appliances. Stewart Wilson is a member s.c.s.and adept with mine machinery and boats. He has participated in many s.c.s. exploratory circuses and is a firm believer in the insulating properties of wool (even in the tropics).


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