Caves of South Wales Dragon

Pwll Pindar

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A 12m scaffolded shaft located in the centre of a shallow shakehole leads into the middle of a cave system linked by a bedding plane. Flat out crawls link several chambers and sections of fossil passage.
Length 300m+
Altitude 371m
Grid SN 90279 14338
This was originally dug by the Westminster Speleological Group to a depth of 3m and then abandoned in 1974. In early 1987 digging started again led by Toby Clark and by May a bedding plane was reached at a depth of 12m. The bedding plane was then dug out first to the west and then to the east to reveal chambers and sections of fossil passage.
The cave is best approached from the car park beside Bridge Cave. Follow the track over the bridge, then to the left through the woods above the Nedd Fechan, where it swings right and heads uphill to the north. At the T junction the right turn is taken and after a few metres the left hand fork is followed into the forestry. After a few metres a clearing containing shakeholes can be seen on the right. Go through this area and follow the footpath on the opposite side passing through the trees to reach a stile on the edge of Pant Mawr. From the stile heading northwest for 100m will take you to the area of the shakehole containing the cave.
Ystradfellte Google map showing the location of Pwll Pindar and other caves in the area.
Location map - click marker to show entrance photo
The cave is located in open moorland, please replace the timbers over the shaft after visiting.
Climbing down the 12m scaffolded entrance shaft leads to a point where a bedding crawl heading both east and west can be entered. At the bottom of the shaft a further climb down of 2m can be made to reach a lower level where a low gravel floored crawl that leads to a 15m climb down Honeymoon Pot to reach a sump that is believed to be perched. Past the top of the climb down to the sump, the passage continues to Cornflake Chamber. Back at the bedding passage at the bottom of the entrance shaft, crawls to the east reach larger passage at a sweeping bend with old gour pools on the left of the passage. The passage enlarges from this point with several rabbit skeletons found in the passage. From here to the right a bedding plane crawl leads to a small pot where a stream sinks and digs continue ahead, while straight on at the main passage leads via some bedding crawls to enter the top of a tall rift chamber, which chokes at the end. The main route from the rabbit skeleton passage is through boulders on the left to reach Bishopsgate Passage. This is a taller passage with two avens, leading to a section of crawls through sand fill to reach a landing with a view out over the main section of Bishopsgate Passage. An 8m pot in the rift in the centre of Bishopsgate Passage leads down to a lower passage. A climb down through calcited boulders leads to a point where it opens out wider on the final section of the descent. The passage below has a boulder choke at one end and a rift that closes down at the other. Bishopsgate Passage ends with a large boulder choke that has been dug in several locations.
Back at the bottom of the entrance shaft following the bedding plane to the west the route is a 40m tight flat out crawl over a calcite floor to reach Singing Stal Chamber, and area of calcited boulders and an array of fine straws. Beyond the taped stal the passage quickly closes down. A hole in the floor of Singing Stal Chamber leads down to Ted Moult Passage that ends in an aven.
Bishopsgate Pitch 8m - ladder or handline required.
Cambrian Cave Registry for Pwll Pindar
Descent 85 Article p26-27 - The Discovery of Pwll Pindar | Bob Wilkins
Descent 177 Article p21-23 - Softly, Softly Blows The Wind | Toby Clark
The Caves the Little Neath Valley | Tony Oldham
The boulder choke should be treated with care as you pass through it.
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 the 'New To Caving' website for more options.
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