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Exploring Gaping Ghyll Main Shaft

Listed under Caves & Caving in North West England, United Kingdom.

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If you are in the Yorkshire Dales at Spring Bank Holiday or August Bank holiday why not take a walk onto Ingleborough and have a trip on the winch down Gaping Ghyll, the deepest natural surface shaft in the UK at 103 metres and the deepest natural underground shaft in the UK until the discovery of Titan (See the Peak- Speedwell system). It takes just over an hour to walk up to the cave (it seems like two!) and just under an hour for the return trip. You can spend as long as you like underground within reason but The Main Chamber alone is well worth it. The winch trips are arranged on Bank Holidays only by Bradford PC and Craven PC.

All you need is a reasonable set of waterproofs and sensible footwear for the walk up. Wrap up warm especially if its busy as there can be a wait for the ride out! Don’t forget a packed lunch and plenty to drink.

You could finish off the day with a walk up Ingleborough or a trip down Ingleborough Cave, the show cave you passed on the way up.

Written by  Ralph Johnson.

Comments, reviews and questions by other travellers

Age/height limit?

Is there a minimum age or height for going on the winch into Gaping Ghyll?

1 Reply

The BPC generally regards that children should be 6 and over to go down the winch(duration approx 1 minute). They need to be able to sit still as they travel in the chair alone. They can be strapped in for added safety if required.

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