Stuck for something to do on Sunday, John suggested caving, but as we were in Bolton and John did not want to do a long trip we decided to to do something more local and shorter. Right at the back of the Northern caves book is some odd caves in “other areas”. These caves are special as they are not in Limestone. They also were not too far away from Bolton.
We decided to Fairy Holes, twin shafts and Diggle Wigglepit, near Greenfield.
We parked near the reservoir and walked directly up to the first cave Fairy holes. We found it quickly and knew were in the right place, thanks to a helpfully labelled entrance:
(though it looks like Northern caves has the name wrong as it’s Fairy Hole, according to the inscription).
A crawl led off under the fell and soon dropped onto an interesting and slightly slippery climb down a deep rift. Climbing grit-stone underground was an interesting experience, less grippy than a limestone is underground. After a ledge another drop directly under where we climbed down dropped us to the floor of this wide fault cave.
This continued for about 20 meters with a climb up of 2m and down the other-side, before eventually coming too tight after two passages intersect vertically, the bottom one being a crawl.
After exploring a few small holes in the floor on the way out. We went to the next cave twin shafts, only 70m away.
Again we found this no issue by taking a compass baring. A short drop of 2m dropped into a rift, South led to a 6m drop and so did north after a short slope. Neither drop looked climbable as it was just a smooth rift and wet grit stone was not easy to climb in my boots. This was a short trip.
The last cave to visit was Diggle Wigglepit some 3km north of there. A nice little hike and a couple of confused walkers later (we were wearing our over-suits for the walk) we were in what we thought was the quarry, however there was no sign of the cave, only dead sheep. We searched other quarries nearby but still nothing, so eventually with the sun setting we gave up. It turned out we had marked the grid ref wrong on the map and were just a litte too high up the hill, the cave being in lower quarries we could not see.
Tea and cake in greenfield rounded off a nice off-beat day caving/not caving.