Caves of South Wales Dragon

Ogof Yr Ardd

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Overview
A cave that starts out in the friable upper beds of limestone and then changes character at a 13m pitch down an impressive pot, to then continue as a meandering rift for over 700m.
Length 1015m
Altitude 221m
Grid SN 85001 14675
History
Explored by the SWCC in 1950, and then extended by cavers working at the Minerva Adventure Centre at Rhongyr Isaf in 1985.
Location
The cave has two entrances on private land, one in the grounds at the rear of Rhongyr Isaf outdoor centre and one in the field behind Rhongyr Isaf farm that adjoins it. The entrance in the farm (probably once referred to as Ogof Coed Cae) being the most unpleasant due to glass and other rubbish being washed into the cave.
Swansea Valley Google map showing the location of Ogof Yr Ardd and other caves in the area.
Location map - click marker to show entrance photo
Access
Both entrances are on private land. Please call at the respective property to obtain permission to visit the cave.
Description
Ogof Yr Ardd (Garden Cave) also known as Pen Blwydd yr Ogof (Birthday Cave) is a long linear stream cave that has formed in the limestone just below the gritstone / limestone boundary. The cave has two entrances on private land, one in the grounds at the rear of Rhongyr Isaf outdoor centre and one in the farm that adjoins it. The initial passages are formed in the upper shaley limestones which are thinly bedded, sharp and very friable. Progress is generally by crawling in the stream with sections where you can stand up. A traverse over a cascade leads you to the top of an impressive 13m pitch, with the water cascading down the far side of the chamber. A 10m ladder can be rigged and drops to large ledges, where you can climb down to the bottom of the chamber. Once at the bottom of the pitch the nature of the cave changes as the water is now cutting through more solid limestone and you are now following a tall narrow rift passage. Progress is made by flat out crawling in the water, walking sideways in the wider sections or by traversing at roof level. The cave eventually ends at a sump. Organic matter enters the cave and as a result the cave has a distinct odour and is very much a collector's piece.
Tackle
Pitch 1 13m
References
Cambrian Cave Registry for Ogof Yr Ardd
Caves of South Wales | Tim Stratford | ISBN: 1-871890-03-9 | Published by Cordee
Warnings
Quite a quantity of broken glass and rusting metal is located in the upstream entrance behind the farm.
Disclaimer
The photographs and information of this page has been provided to help cavers planning trips. Caving can be a dangerous activity, if you are interested in exploring caves please join a caving club so you can enjoy a safe introduction to this sport. Local caving clubs are listed on the links page or you can visit try caving for more options.
If you feel that any of the information is incorrect or should be updated please contact us.