The Yorkshire Dales are world famous for their rich caving opportunities. The caves have formed in limestone rock over a period of many thousands of years. Limestone is a strong rock but has many joints and cracks, and is also soluble in rainwater, although extremely slowly. In cave systems other processes are also involved in their formation. Abrasion by sand and cobbles is very important and near underground waterfalls spray erosion occurs, and in larger chambers wall and roof collapse can speed these processes. With their beautiful passages and shafts and calcite formations such as stalactites, stalagmites, curtains and flowstone, they can be places of great beauty and peace.
The mysterious flow of water as it appears and disappears around Ribblehead has long captivated cavers, drawing them underground to find out more. The grand dramatic entrances of places such as Hull Pot near Horton-in-Ribblesdale also attract the serious and not so serious enthusiasts from far and wide to explore the many caverns and potholes.
An unmistakable landmark in the county is Gaping Gill on the southern slopes of Ingleborough. With a main shaft descending 105m, a stunning chamber big enough to engulf St. Paul's Cathedral, and the tallest unbroken waterfall in England, it's on every cavers must do list. The Gaping Gill system is one of the country's longest and most complex cave systems. As well as the Main Shaft, the system has six other principal entrances; Bar Pot, Flood Entrance Pot, Stream Passage Pot, Disappointment Pot, Henslers Pot and Corky's Pot. These entrances unite underground, and the water sinking in the system eventually emerges into daylight at Ingleborough Cave, a showcave passed on the walk up to Gaping Gill.
Other extensive and well known systems in the Dales include The Three Counties and Kingsdale Master Cave.
Do you want to experience something completely different? 'Live For Today' Caving Days are full of excitement and adventure no matter what type of group you are! Our fully qualified instructors will take you to some of the most famous caves in the area, and no matter what your experience is, we will give you a day you feel most comfortable with. Caving is open to families, groups, or individuals of any skill level.
It makes no difference whether you have had caving experience before or not. How Stean Gorge tailor your session to suit your requirements and abilities. The choice is yours - walk or crawl, abseil or climb, keep dry or get wet or maybe combine a bit of everything. You could find yourself wading through water, climbing underground waterfalls and sliding through mud. If you are looking for something a bit different and don't mind getting dirty then this is definitely for you.