Projects Done by USSCC
We take part and organise many projects ,Trips & Events Over the year.
We also do your bit in cleaning up litter at cave entrance's and within.
We also from time to time take some clubs and groups under ground to explore some of the wonders underneath.
Rossorry Scouts Group 2023
In the Summer of 2023 we took two groups of Rossorry Scouts group Caving at Boho Caves and some waterfall abseiling.
North Coast Clean Up 2022
North Coast Sea Cave Clean Up & Surveying
In July 2022, members of various groups, including the USSCC, QUB, and Dublin Groups, along with individuals from different walks of life, are collaborating on a personal project to address the accumulation of plastic and marine debris in a sea cave near the Giant's Causeway.
During an exploration of the north coast sea caves in August 2021, the group discovered a cave that can only be accessed by sea. They were dismayed by the substantial amount of waste found inside, estimated to be accumulated over a period of 45 years.
In addition to the rubbish, the team also identified impressive calcite formations within the cave that are at risk of destruction.
The USSCC is a club formed in 2018, consisting of passionate volunteers dedicated to preserving caves across Ireland. Aimee Dow, a member of the organization since its establishment, has taken the lead in addressing the issue of waste in the cave.
Liam McCarthy, Chairman of USSCC, commended Aimee's dedication and organizational skills, emphasizing her instrumental role in organizing the cave cleanup project. The club fully supports her efforts and is confident in the success of the endeavor.
The team has scheduled the cleanup for Saturday, May 28th, and extensive planning is underway.
Aimee has outlined a three-step plan for the cleanup. Here are the details:
The Rigging Team and the Cave Team will swim to the cave.
The Rigging Team will set up hauling lines and hand lines, transitioning into the support team.
The Cave Team's task will be to fill 30 x 1-tonne bags with plastic and marine waste, ready to be floated out in batches.
(Note: This part of the plan had to be modified due to hazardous sea conditions.)
The Boat and Support Team will be on standby in the water.
The Support Team will use kayaks to reach the boat, and the Boat Team will tow the rafted bags out to the boat.
The bags will then be towed to Portballintrae Harbour.
The Ground Team will retrieve the bags ashore.
They will sort, photograph, and log all the landed rubbish before disposing of it in the provided skips.
Aimee encourages anyone interested to get involved and volunteer for the cleanup. She emphasizes the need for additional assistance and invites those interested to reach out and join the effort.
Pegleg & Freda's Hole Digging & Clean Up
In the local area, a group of explorers has been actively searching for and cleaning up caves. One particular cave of interest is called Peg Leg Pot. During their exploration, they discovered another cave called Freda's Hole, which was blocked with wire fencing and rubbish. This discovery led them to believe that Peg Leg Pot was nearby. After returning to the area and thoroughly searching, they eventually found Peg Leg Pot hidden beneath rocks. They spent hours digging and clearing the entrance until they could enter the cave.
Peg Leg Pot consists of a muddy chamber with high-level passages and a back chamber. There are multiple small passages that quickly fill with mud. One low tunnel leads to a small middle chamber with a pool of water that overflows down a small hole, known as Nasty Crawl. Another muddy tunnel leads to the backbreaker, a chamber at the bottom of Freda's Hole, which was filled with rubbish. Daylight was visible through the wire fencing in this chamber.
During a subsequent visit, the group removed the wire and fencing from Freda's Hole and installed a wire gate over Peg Leg Pot. They also rigged the cave for a 10-meter ladder and a belay point. Freda's Hole only requires a 10-meter handline for access and egress. The group bagged up the rubbish and began the task of removing it with the help of club members.
Furthermore, the group initiated a dig in response to the sound of flowing water coming from the left side of the backbreaker. Three cavers, including a visitor from England, started the dig. They encountered mud initially, but as they progressed, they reached washed clean stone and boulders. The dig descended a little before heading under a solid rock overhang and back into the collapsed section above. The next stage will involve securing the collapse to ensure safety and splitting larger boulders for removal. The group hopes to uncover new cave passages through this ongoing dig.
In addition to the dig, the group plans to examine and study the rubbish they have collected, as it may contain historically significant items. They also express the intention to replace fencing around nearby caves that have been damaged by cavers over the years. Installing stiles at crossing points could help maintain good relations with landowners.
The group continues to provide updates on the progress of their project. During one digging session, they managed to descend a couple of meters, removing mud, boulders, and small stones. They caught a glimpse of the river but had a minor collapse that fortunately caused no injuries. They plan to return, secure the collapsing bank, and continue digging downward. They also hope to explore the left bedding plane or the right rift filled with stone, both potential avenues for new cave passages.
During a check-up in Freda's Hole, they noticed further collapse at the dig site, which may have made the area safer for work. They also ventured into Peg Leg Pot and discovered an 8 to 10-meter narrow drop pot in the back chamber, which they intend to attempt descending.
In Pollthanrees, one caver descended to a slightly flowing streamway, possibly the path where water from Freda's Hole enters the main cave system. Further exploration is required to confirm this connection, along with a dye test from Freda's Hole. They also plan to explore the narrow pot and potentially find a way back up if needed.
With the assistance of Queens Caving Club, all the wire was relocated for disposal, ensuring the cleanup effort was completed.