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Ban Mani Phruk Expeditions 2015 & 2016

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Abstract and Figures

Following the 2014 Shepton Mallet Caving Club expedition to the Doi Phuka National park in Nan there were two smaller expeditions to the area in January and February 2015. These trips concentrated on the region between the end of the "Southern Track" and the village of Ban Nam Pua Patthana and many caves were located, including the main resurgence of the Nam Pua river. In February 2016 the fifth Shepton Mallet Caving Club Expedition to Ban Mani Phruk saw 15 cavers in the field for 10 days. The results of these expeditions are reported here.
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The 2015 & 2016 Expeditions to the
Doi Phuka National Park, Nan, Thailand
Compiled by Martin Ellis
Abstract
Following the 2014 Shepton Mallet Caving Club expedition to the Doi Phuka National park in
Nan there were two smaller expeditions to the area in January and February 2015. These
trips concentrated on the region between the end of the "Southern Track" and the village of
Ban Nam Pua Patthana and many caves were located, including the main resurgence of the
Nam Pua river. In February 2016 the fifth Shepton Mallet Caving Club Expedition to Ban
Mani Phruk saw 15 cavers in the field for 10 days. The results of these expeditions are
reported here.
Introduction
Since the last report on the club’s expeditions to Ban Mani Phruk in Nan province, Thailand
was published (SMCC Journal Series 12 No. 7) there have been several further expeditions
in February 2012 and February 2014, and in March 2013 a small team visited for three
days. Tham Pha Phueng has been confirmed as Thailand’s deepest cave and is now inside
the top ten longest caves as well. Three other caves with a vertical range of more than
100m have been explored and one cave has been surveyed to a length of 1.9km.
Location
In January 2015 the team was based at the Security Development Project, in the village of
Ban Mani Phruk 1 (19° 26’N, 101° 04’E) at an altitude of 1,400 m in the Doi Phuka National
park, Thung Chang, Nan province, with four days spent trekkking in the forest between the
end of the track south from Ban Mani Phruk and Ban Nam Pua Phatthana. In February 2015
the expedition was based at the Chomphu Phuka Resort in Pua.
In February 2016 the expedition started off at the Ban Mani Phruk Security Development
Project, but due to a coffee promotion had to move to a National Park ranger station in Ban
Pang Kae. From these bases the caves in the northern part of the Doi Phuka National Park
were explored. For the final three days the expedition was based at the Chomphu Phuka
Resort in Pua. From here caves near Ban Nam Pua Phatthana, in the central part of the Doi
Phuka National Park, were investigated.
Cave Descriptions
Only caves, sites and passages found, explored and surveyed in 2015 and 2016 are listed.
For the caves found on previous expeditions see the reports of the 2009/2010 Expeditions,
2012 Expedition and 2013/2014 Expeditions.
Notes:
All co-ordinates are UTM on the WGS 1984 datum.
The anchors that have been installed are 8mm 'Spit', 8mm Hilti stainless steel bolts,
8mm through bolts or 10mm through bolts.
Tham Pha Phueng, Tham Huai Poen, Tham Nam Tok Nam Poen, Tham Rai Phin,
Tham Pha Thong and Tham Men Dip are active stream caves. Judging from the
size of the tree trunks that have been washed in these caves flood violently during
the wet season.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 241
Map 1 – North Ban Mani Phruk
SMCC Journal 13(6) 242
Map 2 – Central Ban Mani Phruk
SMCC Journal 13(6) 243
Map 3 – South Ban Mani Phruk
SMCC Journal 13(6) 244
Map 4 – Nam Pua & Ban Nam Pua Phatthana
North East Area
Tham Pha Thong
 NA0164
Grid reference: 47Q 719366 2152294 Altitude: 1,363m
Length: 144m Vertical range: 84m
From the main track north of Ban Mani Phruk 1 turn right approximately 1.5km north of the
junction with the track to Ban Mani Phruk 2. Follow this track for approximately 1km, past
Tham Rai Phin to a small plantation on the left where the track trends round to the right.
Park in the plantation and walk a few metres north to the stream which can be followed to
the cave entrance.
The 3m entrance drop is easily rigged with a ladder, or can be bypassed by crawling under
the large boulder. After a few metres there is a 3m climb and then the first pitch is soon
SMCC Journal 13(6) 245
reached. This pitch is 11m deep and descends to a large ledge. From the ledge there is a
15m pitch to a narrow, meandering passage that descends steeply. This passage is
interrupted with a couple of 2m climbs and pitches of 4m and 8m. The final pitch, Skywalker
Pitch, is 14m deep and lands in a large section of passage. Unfortunately the cave soon
ends in a sump. The cave was rigged with 8mm through bolts.
The entrance was shown to the SMCC in February 2014 and was briefly explored to the top
of the 15m pitch. The cave was fully explored and surveyed in February 2016.
Figure 1 – Tham Pha Thong survey
SMCC Journal 13(6) 246
Photograph 1 – Tham Pha Thong pitch
(photograph by Andy Goddard)
Tham Rai Phin
NA0142
Grid reference: 47Q 719298 2152044 Altitude: 1,392m
Length: 487m Vertical range: 178m
From the main track north of Ban Mani Phruk 1 turn right approximately 1.5km north of the
junction with the track to Ban Mani Phruk 2. Follow this track for approximately 750m to a
parking place for one car on the left hand side of the track. Walk back up the hill, past the
cave's GPS location and find a path downhill into the valley. This is marked by some cut
small trees and bamboo supporting the side of the track. The path leads down to the stream
and the cave entrance.
The large entrance soon decreases in size to a meandering vadose canyon that heads
south for 150m to the first pitch which is 12m. The second pitch, P20, is wet, but can be
bypassed by climbing over the top of the pitch into a passage that descends, with a couple
of climbs and a steep mud slope, to join with the streamway below the P20. After a short
distance one reaches a chamber. There are two ways out of the chamber. By following the
active passage a second wet P20 is soon found. The second passage from the chamber
heads north as 1 5m high, sand floored rift before turning east and then south. After a few
metres of sand floor the passage becomes very muddy, descends steeply and requires a
rope. This muddy descent ends at the base of the P20.
Below the P20 the passage becomes a very high rift and has a wet 33m pitch. After this
pitch is a junction with a boulder floor. Straight ahead is an ascending mud slope that
SMCC Journal 13(6) 247
chokes after 20m while to the left is a P15 that lands in a boulder floored chamber. At the far
end of the chamber the stream passage continues and after 20m there is a P12 into a
smaller chamber. The stream soon enters a low passage, that becomes a grovel and is
eventually impassable after 30m.
This is the sixth deepest cave in Thailand and has been rigged with 8mm through bolts.
After being guided to the entrance in February 2014 the SMCC explored to the base of the
33m pitch. In February 2016 the rest of the cave was explored and surveyed.
Figure 2 – Tham Rai Phin survey (plan)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 248
Figure 3 – Tham Rai Phin survey (elevation)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 249
Central West Area
Tham Men
NA0132
Grid reference: 47Q 715078 2147949 Altitude: 1,293m
Length: 283m Vertical range: 46m
Following another visit to the cave in February 2016 the survey has been revised.
Figure 4 – Tham Men survey
Sink NA0101
Grid reference: 47Q 716011 2147889 Altitude: 1,271m
Turn off the road back down the hill from Ban Mani Phruk at 47Q 715140 2148195. The
track goes past the parking area for Tham Men (47Q 715255 2147995) to reach a wide
parking area at a cabbage field with Shaft NA0133. The track continues down into the
extensively farmed doline and the sink is on the southern edge of the doline.
A small concrete dam ponds the water, to allow it to be piped away, before the stream drops
over a 2m high limestone cliff. The water sinks in two places. One place is heavily
overgrown with vegetation and the other is a rift, that is blocked with rocks in which the
stream can be heard descending.
The sink was investigated by the SMCC in February 2016.
Sink NA0102
Grid reference: 47Q 715729 2147881 Altitude: 1,278m
Sink NA0102 is in the same doline as Sink NA0101. Turn off the road back down the hill
from Ban Mani Phruk at 47Q 715140 2148195. The track goes past the parking area for
Tham Men (47Q 715255 2147995) to reach a wide parking area at a cabbage field with
SMCC Journal 13(6) 250
Shaft NA0133. The track continues down into the extensively farmed doline and the sink is
on the southern edge of the doline, towards the western end.
The sink was located by the SMCC in February 2016.
Sink NA0198
Grid reference: 47Q 716042 2147879 Altitude: 1,264m
This sink is near Sink NA0101. Turn off the road back down the hill from Ban Mani Phruk at
47Q 715140 2148195. The track goes past the parking area for Tham Men (47Q 715255
2147995) to reach a wide parking area at a cabbage field with Shaft NA0133. The track
continues down into the extensively farmed doline and the sink is on the southern edge of
the doline.
The stream sinks amongst boulders at the base of a cliff. Above the sink, a rift can be
climbed for 10m to reach a small cave.
The sink was investigated by the SMCC in February 2016.
Central East Area
Cave NA0152/NA0153
Upper entrance (NA0152): 47Q 718497 2145008 Altitude: 1,395m
Lower entrance (NA0153): 47Q 718485 2145030 Altitude: 1,371m
Length: 220m Vertical range: 81m
From the Security Development Project headquarters take the sealed road south towards
Ban Mani Phruk 2. As this road turns north take a dirt road south. Drive past the National
Park ranger station to a Y junction. Take the left hand fork, turning right at another Y
junction, and drive down the rough track to where it levels out and there is a path heading
downhill on the right. Park at the level area and then follow the path on the right as far as an
abandoned farm at 47Q 718242 2145049. A small stream flows past the farm, but to find the
path to the cave continue along the track up the slope to the other side of the stream and
then head left into the trees. The stream sinking at Tham Pon has cut a valley about 10m
deep; keep up on the top of the bank and go past Tham Pon and then past Tham Wa, which
is another 50m along the path. The lower NA0153 entrance is where the stream in the small
valley to the right of the path sinks. The upper NA0152 entrance is in a low limestone
outcrop to the left of the path, above the stream sink in the valley and where the path starts
to climb out of the valley.
The upper entrance is a 9m climb down boulders which requires a handline. The
meandering passage below the climb ends after 30m at the 20m pitch into the main
chamber. The lower entrance is an active stream sink which has several pools of water and
a couple of low sections before a climb up into the main chamber. The main chamber is 10m
wide and 20m long, funnelling sown at the northern end into a boulder choke. Although
there are large and loose boulders in the choke, it can be passed to reach the steeply
descending lower passage that ends after 30m in a mud choke.
The SMCC were shown the entrance in March 2013, but the cave was not entered. The
caves were explored and surveyed in February 2016.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 251
Figure 5 – Cave NA0152/NA0153 survey
Photograph 2 – Emma Porter and Mike Clayton admiring formations in NA0152
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 252
Sink NA0201
Grid reference: 47Q 719114 2147650 Altitude: 1,389m
The sink can be reached by walking up the valley from the Nam Tok Nam Poen parking. The
valley can also be accessed from Ban Mani Phruk 2 village via a drivable track starting at
47Q 718194 2147977.
A stream sinks amongst boulders.
The sink was investigated by the SMCC in February 2016.
Sink NA0202
Grid reference: 47Q 719044 2147651 Altitude: 1,388m
The sink can be reached by walking up the valley from the Nam Tok Nam Poen parking. The
valley can also be accessed from Ban Mani Phruk 2 village via a drivable track starting at
47Q 718194 2147977.
This is a flood overflow sink with very little potential for being dug out.
The sink was investigated by the SMCC in February 2016.
South Area
Cave NA0174
Grid reference: 47Q 717843 2142092 Altitude: 1,253m
Length: 17m Vertical range: 10m
From the Security Development Project headquarters take the sealed road south towards
Ban Mani Phruk 2. As this road turns north take a dirt road south. Drive past the National
Park ranger station to a crossroads with a large Hmong shrine. Take the track going straight
ahead (south) and follow this for 6km, through a farm, to a large cleared and farmed area at
47Q 717475 2141825 with a junction with two other tracks. One of these tracks heads east,
following the valley, for 500m to another clearing with a small field. The large, fenced,
collapse entrance of Cave NA0174 is at the edge of the field at the foot of the hill.
A rope is required to descend the 10m to the entrance, rigged from trees above the
limestone cliff. Unfortunately after 7m the cave is choked with mud. In 2014 there was a
15cm high gap above the mud and the cave could can be seen to continue. However, in
2016 the cave was completely choked.
The SMCC were shown the entrance to this cave in 2012. Visits in 2014 and 2016 failed to
find a way into the cave.
Cave NA0199
Grid reference: 47Q 717690 2142043 Altitude: 1,289m
Length: 13m Vertical range: 8m
From the Security Development Project headquarters take the sealed road south towards
Ban Mani Phruk 2. As this road turns north take a dirt road south. Drive past the National
Park ranger station to a crossroads with a large Hmong shrine. Take the track going straight
ahead (south) and follow this for 6km, through a farm, to a large cleared and farmed area at
47Q 717475 2141825 with a junction with two other tracks. One of these tracks heads east,
following the valley. This small cave is at the foot of the cliff on the northern side of the
valley, before reaching the small field.
The choked entrance, which is at the foot of the cliff where water sinks in flood conditions,
was dug out to find 5m of passage with a dry, cracked mud floor ending at the base of a
blind 8m aven. Two other entrances can be seen 10m up in the cliff above, but have not
been investigated.
The cave was investigated by the SMCC in February 2016.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 253
Tham Bpaet Sip
NA0149
Grid reference: 47Q 718416 2139751 Altitude: 1,277m
Length: 907m Vertical range: 118m
From the Security Development Project headquarters take the sealed road south towards
Ban Mani Phruk 2. As this road turns north take a dirt road south. Drive past the National
Park ranger station to a crossroads with a large Hmong shrine. Take the track going straight
ahead (south) and follow this for 7.5km, through a farm, to a parking area on the left (east)
at 47Q 717230 2140830 where the track to Tham Bpaet Sip turns off. Follow this track up
the hill for 1.5km to a junction with a path on the right at 47Q 718070 2140100. Follow this
path across the first valley and then descend the hill for 500m into a second valley, before
turning left off the path and ascending the final 100m to the very large collapse entrance.
Access to the cave is from the south side of the large collapse doline, is very steep and a
handline is useful to descend the upper section. The floor of the collapse is a mass of
boulders. The main passage is on the left hand side of the boulder slope where a couple of
holes give access to the large passage. Heading north it is necessary to ascend the
boulders for a few metres before starting to descend a rubble slope. Passing a side passage
on the right (east) the slope descends to a short crawl before opening out again and
descending to some gours and a stream that has a trickle of water in the dry months. The
other side of this very muddy section the passage continues and a hole in the mud floor
passage has been passed to an undescended pitch estimated at 15m.
Back on the rubble slope the side passage to the east soon reaches a pitch of 8m (rigged
with two 8mm spits). Below the pitch cross the mud slope to an acsending passage that is
floored with mud and then sand. After 30m there is a cross rift which can be followed north
for 15m to a 20m pitch. The main passage turns right (south) and after 60m reaches a
chamber. After a 4m climb down boulders (handline useful) in the chamber the passage
turns north, passes under the pitch from the cross rift and after 150m reaches a large
boulder and mud floored chamber. At the far side of the chamber there is a small choked
passage that can not be followed far.
At the bottom of the entrance doline, opposite the slope down, there is a passage heading
north. This descends steeply via a series of short climbs and pitches, but after 100m
becomes choked. This is the deepest point in the cave.
The SMCC were guided to this cave in March 2013 when it was briefly explored. In
February 2014 the SMCC explored and surveyed nearly 500m of passage. Exploration and
surveying continued in February 2016.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 254
Photograph 3 – Formations in Tham Bpaet Sip
(photograph by Andy Goddard)
Photograph 4 – Passage in Tham Bpaet Sip
(photograph by Andy Goddard)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 255
Figure 6 – Tham Bpaet Sip survey
Tham Men Dip NA0181
Grid reference: 47Q 719276 2140054 Altitude: 1,406m
Length: 142m Vertical range: 44m
The cave is a short but entertaining trip, following a small stream mainly through black
limestone. The cave is wet and shows signs of flooding, with a lot of flood debris (mainly
tree branches and other organic matter) found in the main streamway.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 256
The cave is found at the end of the track to the forest ranger station. Follow the rough track
through 3 gates until you reach the ranger station. Behind the ranger station there drop
down a small gully to a surface stream, which can be followed downstream (heading west)
to the sink, which is less than 50m from the parking area.
Where the surface stream sinks at the base of a small cliff there are two routes down to the
streamway in the cave. The left hand (western) entrance involves a climb down tree roots
for 4m to the stream bed, whereas the right hand (eastern) entrance offers an easier climb
down rocks. After 10m the stream drops down a 4m drop into a waist deep pool (handline
useful, bolt placed in the right hand wall a couple of metres before the climb).
Following the stream down a series of small cascades (and pools), after a further 50m a
short pitch is reached - best rigged with a ladder and tether through an eyehole in the left
hand wall, with a bolt placed for a lifeline a couple of metres back from the pitch. At the foot
of the pitch, heading upstream soon closes down but heading downstream involves a short
drop into a pool, quickly followed by a second pool, with low airspace below a stal curtain,
followed by a wet 3m climb down, which is awkward and tight at the top, and is aided by a
handline that can be rigged from a natural back in the low pool.
Another series of cascades and pools follows for an entertaining 30m of wet streamway to a
final pitch of 5m down a fine cylindrical shaft (bolt on left hand wall for ladder, lifeline rigged
from natural back in passage). Below the pitch the passageway briefly increases in size
(with an inlet heading up the slippery slope to the right), until at a well decorated corner the
streamway follows the stream to the right and disappears through a too tight slot between
the stal formations in the floor.
The cave was found and briefly explored in January 2015 by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and
Helen Harper. In February 2016 the SMCC expedition explored and surveyed the cave.
Figure 7 – Tham Men Dip survey
SMCC Journal 13(6) 257
Photograph 5 – Jo Campbell on the last pitch of Tham Men Dip
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
Sink NA0200
Grid reference: 47Q 716993 2140962 Altitude: 1,236m
From the Security Development Project headquarters take the sealed road south towards
Ban Mani Phruk 2. As this road turns north take a dirt road south. Drive past the National
Park ranger station to a crossroads with a large Hmong shrine. Take the track going straight
ahead (south) and follow this for 7km, through a farm, to a parking area on the right at 47Q
717150 2141100. Walk down across the overgrown meadow and cross the large, seasonal
stream and follow path up the ridge on the left for about 150m before dropping down into the
valley on the right.
This is a small, choked sink at the foot of a limestone outcrop in the bed of the seasonally
dry stream. The site has very limited potential.
The sink was found by the SMCC in February 2016.
Nam Pua
Cave NA0052
Upper entrance: 47Q 719710 2133245 Altitude: 840m
Lower entrance: 47Q 719749 2133129 Altitude: 832m
Length: ≈150m Vertical range: ≈8m
This is another through trip on the same stream as Tham Nan and Tham Fak Thong. It
consists of about 150m of easy walking passage with two 3m climbs down at the top end.
The lower entrance is an 8m high by 2m wide rift and no side passages were noted.
The cave was recorded by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 24 January 2015.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 258
Cave NA0185
Grid reference: 47Q 718601 2136903 Altitude: 1,111m
Length: ≈115m+
The cave is 750m north-west of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
The entrance is a collapse in a doline. A crawl through boulders for 15m leads to a squeeze
into square passage 3m wie by 3m high with a smooth chert/shale floor heading down dip at
approximately 50°. The passage has been followed for about 100m with the passage getting
slightly smaller, but has not been pushed to a conclusion.
There is no draught and a suspicion of bad air. The cave floor is very slippery and the
guides say that the passage continues to a lake where the cave ends.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 25 January 2015.
Cave NA0186
Grid reference: 47Q 718684 2136841 Altitude: 1,110m
In a large, overgrown, doline there is said to be a cave entrance. The doline is 670m north-
west of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
The cave has not been examined due to time constraints and the necessity for major jungle
clearance just to get into the doline.
The site was recorded by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 25 January 2015.
Cave NA0193
Upper entrance 47Q 719784 2133113 Altitude: 835m
Lower entrance 47Q 719838 2133089 Altitude: 835m
Length: ≈40m
This through cave is the furthest downstream on the stream with Tham Nan and Tham Fak
Thong. Access is from Ban Nam Pua Phatthana and the cave is near cultivated fields.
The upper entrance is an arch 3m high and 4m wide and the cave is a short through trip
consisting of walking passage with a cobble floor, apart from a 4m hands and knees crawl
half way through. There are no side passages.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 24 January 2015.
Cave NA0194
Grid reference: 47Q 718232 2137727 Altitude: 1,165m
Length: ≈8m Vertical range: ≈5m
The entrance is 30 to 50m to the right of Tham Don Mai Phai as you face the cave.
This is a small muddy rift 3m long by 1.5m wide and 5m deep with a possible passage
continuing at the bottom. The cave obviously takes a small stream as it is at the downstream
end of a small stream gully in the jungle, but the guides insisted that during the wet season
it resurges.
The cave was recorded by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Caves NA0187
Grid reference: 47Q 718731 2136770 Altitude: 1,116m
The co-ordinates are for a small clearing with bamboo surrounded by small stream gullies in
which there are, according to guides, 4 small cave entrances. The caves have not been
located or explored.
The site was recorded by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 25 January 2015.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 259
Shaft NA0197
Grid reference: 47Q 718974 2136663 Altitude: 1,102m
Length: ≈30m Vertical Range: ≈30m
The entrance is 80m directly upslope from Tham Thip and is 370m north-north-west of
Tham Kun Nam Pua.
The shaft is in a slip rift approximately 3m wide and 8m long. The shaft is split at the bottom
by a large boulder and the depth was estimated at approximately 30m. The guides reported
that there is ongoing passage at the bottom and the presence of rotting sections of bamboo
would suggest that the locals have explored it. They also report that there are nine other
caves in the vicinity.
The shaft was visited by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Tham Chang
 NA0192
Grid reference: 47Q 718728 2133981 Altitude: 975m
Length: ≈80m+ Vertical range: ≈25m+
Tham Chang is near the upstream entrance to Tham Nan, which is the furthest upstream of
the series of through caves which includes Tham Fak Thong.
The south facing entrance arch is approximately 20m high by 50m wide and opens onto a
passage of similar size which heads approximately north, sloping down at 30° over huge
boulders for 20m to level off then a further 40m to a chamber 20m high, 10m wide and 10m
long where the passage ends. Keeping to the right at the bottom of the entrance slope leads
to a climb down through boulders for about 10m to a pitch, which has not been descended,
estimated at 15m into a larger ongoing passage which, according to the guides, leads to an
even bigger passage with a stream. There is a perceptible draught at the undescended
pitch.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 24 January 2015.
Tham Don Mai Phai NA0182
Grid reference: 47Q 718229 2137688 Altitude: 1,160m
Length: ≈142m+ Vertical range: ≈50m+
The cave is 1.6km north-north-west of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
A hading rift leads after 7m to a climb down into an arched passage which is 5 to 8m high
and 6 to 8m wide. This can be followed down dip, at 40°, for 60m to a short constriction
followed by similar large passage for a further 50m to two, undescended short pitches
estimated to be 15m and 10m deep respectively. Several side passages were also noted,
but not explored. There is a very strong draught in the main passage to the extent that it is
quite cold, but no detectable air movement in the side passages.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Tham Fak Thong

 NA0077
Upper entrance A 47Q 719278 2133551 Altitude: 918m
Upper entrance B 47Q 719279 2133578 Altitude: 924m
Lower entrance 47Q 719425 2133386 Altitude: 903m
Length: 457m Vertical Range: 22m
The cave is on of the series of through caves on the same stream that includes Tham Nan.
The two upper entrances lead to a walking phreatic type passage in beautiful white
limestone with a floor covered in cobbles, stones and sand through to the bottom entrance,
after approximately 300-400m. No side passages noted. There are probably no prospects of
finding much more passage.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 260
Tham Fak Thong was first explored by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka on 24
January 2015. It was then surveyed by Phil Collett and Ivan Hollis on 24 February 2015.
Figure 8 – Tham Fak Thong survey
Tham Kun Nam Pua

NA0161
SMCC Journal 13(6) 261
Grid reference: 47Q 719078 2136309 Altitude: 990m
Length: 50m+
Other names: Tham Teuan
This is the main resurgence for the Nam Pua river.
The stream emerges from a rift approximately 7m high and 2m wide in a south facing
entrance, falling into a flooded shaft about 5m deep with a whirling vortex sump at the base.
The water from this sump resurges from under boulders about 10m away. On the visit in
January 2015 it was not possible to climb across the shaft to examine the rift more closely
with the equipment and time available, although there are several rotted bamboo poles still
in place. The guides reported that this is the water from caves in the Ban Mani Phruk region.
The cave was first visited on 25 January 2015 by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek
Wyderka.
Tham Lom
 NA0050
Grid reference: 47Q 718985 2133875 Altitude: 913m
Length: 184m+ Vertical range: 13m
Tham Long is one of the series of caves in the valley to the north-west of Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana. Follow the base of cliff on the west side of the lower entrance of Tham Nan
steeply uphill for about 80m to the entrance. In the wet season a large stream resurges from
the cave before dropping over a cliff 12m beyond the entrance.
Immediately inside the drafting entrance the passage lowers to a hands and knees crawl for
about 5m before enlarging to a rift passage approximately 2m wide and between 5 and 15m
high. This passage meanders for about 100m heading vaguely west to a sharp turn to the
right. Taking this right hand turn the large passage closes down to a drafting crawl. Back at
the junction the left hand passage goes up a series of climbs, which seem to be in re-eroded
calcite deposits. Exploration stopped where, on the right, was a climb up a calcite wall 3 or 4
m high. On the left it was possible to climb a similar height into a smaller passage which
continued to a squeeze. This would drop back into the passage at the top of the other
climb. Looking through the squeeze the passage seems to get bigger. The guides reported
that there are about five other, similar caves in the area.
Tham Lom was first explored by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka on 24 January
2015. It was then surveyed by Phil Collett and Ivan Hollis on 24 February 2015.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 262
Figure 9 – Tham Lom survey
Tham Nam Pua

NA0162
Grid reference: 47Q 719145 2136288 Altitude: 988m
Length: ≈140m+
From Tham Kun Nam Pua follow along base of cliff to east for approximately 80m to an
entrance which is 8m high and 4m wide.
At the entrance there is a climb down a dry, 2m deep pothole. From here the mud floored
passage, which is only slightly smaller than entrance, rises at an angle of about 45° via a
series of climbs up, over and around deep pools for about 40m to walking passage. This
walking passage goes for about 100m to a large pool with passage seen to be continuing
beyond and there is a draught.
This is obviously the flood overflow for Tham Kun Nam Pua and the guides say that in the
wet season there is a huge volume of water resurging here and at various points in the cliff
above. The rocks are very slippery throughout and some of the climbing/traversing is
exposed and strenuous.
The cave was first explored on 25 January 2015 by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek
Wyderka.
Tham Nan NA0051
Upper entrance 47Q 718716 2133954 Altitude: 947m
Lower entrance 47Q 719042 2133866 Altitude: 910m
Length: ≈340m Vertical range: ≈37m
This is the furthest upstream of the the series of through caves that includes Tham Fak
Thong. The entrance is an active sink and faces south.
The rift entrance is approximately 4m high and 1.5m wide. The almost straight passage
goes through the ridge for approximately 350m to the north facing lower entrance. There is
a small side passage entering from the north about one third of the way through. The cave
is obviously used by hunters to avoid going over ridge. Guides reported that there are
SMCC Journal 13(6) 263
multiple caves within 30 minutes of walking along the ridge to the left and right of the lower
entrance.
The cave was first visited on 24 January 2015 by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek
Wyderka.
Tham Pip NA0189
Grid reference: 47Q 719148 2136859 Altitude: 1,099m
At the head of a small valley this a sumped resurgence approximately 6 to 7m in with a
small stream flowing out of it. It is 560m north of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
Although no air space was apparent in January 2015 a large passage could be seen
underwater. The guides said that at times it is possible to get in to a big chamber within 10m
of the entrance where antique knives had been found. This cave is near the top of a ridge,
but the size of the streambed would suggest a strong flow of water at some times of the
year.
The site was recorded by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka on 25 January 2015.
Tham Samlang NA0183
Grid reference: 47Q 718254 2137480 Altitude: 1,150m
Length: ≈45m+ Vertical range: ≈25m+
This is an active stream sink at the base of a cliff. It is 1.5km north-north-west of Tham Kun
Nam Pua.
From the 8m high and 3m wide rift entrance the passage descends steeply at 70° to 80°,
over boulders, for 30m to an undescended pitch estimated at 15m with a small trickle of
water. Climbing to the left at the head of this pitch allows access to a rift with bridged
boulder jammed across the same drop.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Tham Thip NA0188
Grid reference: 47Q 718952 2136689 Altitude: 1,090m
Length: ≈60m+ Vertical range: ≈15m+
Tham Thip is 400m north of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
The small rift entrance leads to a wriggle through boulders to gain another descending rift
for 10m to a phreatic type passage. This has a stream trench in floor and is 2 to 4m high
and about 4m wide. After 20m this is another rift, 8m high and 6m wide, which can be
followed for 15m to the head of a pitch estimated at around 15m deep. There is probably
with a mud floor overhung with massive perched boulders. There is possibly slight draught
at the head of the pitch. If the boulders can be trusted this could easily be rigged off natural
belays, otherwise the quality of rock in the "solid" walls is somewhat dubious.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Tham Thompo NA0191
Grid reference: 47Q 718465 2134215 Altitude: 994m
Length: ≈50m Vertical range: ≈25m
The cave is at the head of the valley which has the series of through caves including Tham
Nan and Tham Fak Thong.
The north facing entrance is the top of a bedding slope approximately 15m wide and 3m
high. The straight passage slopes down at approximately 45° heading almost due south with
a small muddy streamway at the lefthand side. There are two small, 3m, climb down over
boulders and after approximately 40 to 50m the cave appears to end in a mud floored
chamber after another climb down of about 4m. There is no draught and the cave feels hot.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 264
The cave was first visited on 24 January 2015 by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek
Wyderka.
Tham Tom Som NA0184
Grid reference: 47Q 718369 2137321 Altitude: 1,180m
Length: ≈105m
Tham Tom Som is 1.25km north-north-west of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
From the 4m high by 4m wide entrance a similar sized passage with old, dusty stal and a
mud floor, leads for 40m to a junction. To the left at the junction is 10m of lowering passage
to a choke while to the right is 15m of walking to a chamber from where a wriggle up
through stal on the left leads to more walking passage with stal for about 40m to another
choke. The cave is hot and airless.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 26 January 2015.
Tham Yang Pha Ra
 NA0196
Grid reference: 47Q 718549 2137079 Altitude: 1,106m
Length: ≈80m
Other names: Rubber Tree Cave
The cave is 900m north-north-west of Tham Kun Nam Pua.
A stream sinks into an entrance which is approximately 1.5m high and 2m wide and
contains a lot of flood debris. A squeeze over this debris gains a passage varying from 4m
high by 3m wide to 1m high by 2m wide between boulders in a huge ruckle. An estimated
80m of passage was explored by climbing down through boulders with the passage getting
smaller, but it was not pushed to a conclusion. This cave is all in a big boulder ruckle with no
"real" passage seen and the potential would appear limited. However, there is a noticeable
draught throughout.
The cave was explored by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper on the 25 January 2015.
Ban Nam Pua Phatthana
Cave NA0195
Grid reference: 47Q 720555 2131150 Altitude: 750m
Length: ≈50m
The entrance is 30 to 40m along the base of the cliff to the left of Tham Yok Wiman, when
facing the Tham Yok Wiman entrance.
The rift entrance is approximately 1.5x2m and has a wooden ladder. Descending the ladder
for an estimated 5-6m gains a mud floored walking passage for 20m to an apparent end in a
small chamber approximately 3m in diameter. However, a wriggle through stal on the left
gains a descending passage, approximately 5m high and 6m wide, which descends over
muddy dirty stal to a flat-out crawl over mud after 10m. The air throughout the cave is hot,
foetid and of dubious quality.
The cave was found and explored on the 27 January 2015 by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and
Helen Harper.
Shaft NA0203
Grid reference: 47Q 721134 2130378 Altitude: 865m
The large entrance is 60m south-east from Tham Maa.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 265
The large entrance is in a doline, approximately 30m in diameter and 15m in depth, which
slopes down to what looked like the opening to a shaft. The entrance had some old bamboo
poles laid across it – presumably for bat netting.
The entrance was found on 23 February 2016 by the SMCC expedition when looking for
Tham Maa.
Sink NA0190
Grid reference: 47Q 720477 2131159 Altitude: 730m
The sink is in the left bank of the Nam Pua river, about 4m from the road near the start of
the track up to Tham Yok Wiman.
There is not an entrance in the river bank, and the water sinking is seen in the lower series
of Tham Yok Wiman.
The sink was recorded in January 2015 by Tomek Wyderka, Rob and Helen Harper.
Tham Maa/Tham Yang
 NA0147
Tham Maa: 47Q 721060 2130426 Altitude: 846m
Tham Yang: 47Q 750454 2130094 Altitude: 789m
Length: 1,990m Vertical Range: 114m
Other names: Tham Nang
To get to the Tham Maa entrance walk up through the village of Ban Nam Pua Phatthana
and take a track on the right up a small stream valley and then up across the hill for 15
minutes to a large open shaft entrance, approximately 8m by 8m. 300,000 baht has been
spent on developing it as a show cave with a substantial steel stairway and gate. Tham
Yang is to the south of Ban Nam Pua Phatthana – take an obvious track that leads off the
road from between some corn storage huts and after 40m the cave is in a small doline, 5m
to the left of the track.
The Tham Maa entrance has a steel staircase that descends for 50m into a large chamber
which is 20m by 20m, with a medium sized active stream. Climbing down over fixed ladders
and boulder allows access to stream. From this chamber a gour floored inlet can be
followed northwards for 50m to a choke. Upstream (right) there is a drop into a large
passage (20m high x 8m wide) which leads to a boulder fall after 40m. Turning right the
stream can be followed through boulders for 15m into a small passage (4m x 3m) with easy
walking on a gravel and cobble floor for 60m to a hands and knees crawl in water. Once
past this crawl the passage can be followed for a total of 300m to end in a boulder choke.
The downstream (left) streamway often has two sections – a lower level at stream level that
requires occasional crawling and a higher level over mud coated boulders.has been
surveyed for about 150m into a higher level which had a coating of slippery mud. After 350m
a chamber is reached were a high rift enters from the north. This has been explored for
200m, but not pushed to a conclusion. The main streamway continues for another 350m
through a couple of chambers, to the bottom of the pitch from Tham Yang. The stream
sumps about 60m past the Tham Yang pitch.
The Tham Yang entrance is 2m by 4m and drops through boulders to a dry, 4.5m wide by
4.5m high square stream passage which can be followed 20m down dip on a 25° slope to a
4m climb and a further 4m of passage which ends at the lip of 20m pitch into the lower
streamway of Tham Maa, just upstream from the sump.
The cave is not in limestone, but in a conglomerate.
Both entrances were shown to Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka on 27 January
2015. The downstream section from the Tham Maa entrance was surveyed by Phil Collett
and Ivan Hollis on 23 February 2015. The cave was explored and surveyed, including the
link from Tham Yang, by the SMCC expedition on 23 and 24 February 2016.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 266
Figure 10 – Tham Maa / Tham Yang survey
Photograph 5 – James Begley admiring conglomerate formations, Tham Maa
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 267
Photograph 6 – Tham Maa entrance
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 268
Photograph 7 – James Begley admiring formations in Tham Maa
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
Photograph 8 – Formations in Tham Maa
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 269
Photograph 9 – Jo Campbell in Tham Maa streamway
(photograph by Andy Goddard)
Tham Nam Ook Ru NA0054
Grid reference: 47Q 720293 2130676 Altitude: 710m
Length: 91m Vertical range: 2m
Other names: Tham Lod; Tham Nam Lot
Park in the centre of the village of Ban Nam Pua Phatthana, where the road crosses a
bridge. Take the track that follows this stream for 30m to the Nam Pua river and the
entrances are just on the right.
There are two entrances. The first entrance is a rift 4m high and 3m wide while the second
entrance is about 10m further on at the level of the Nam Pua river and is 1m high and 2m
wide with a medium sized stream resurging. Both entrances unite after about 30m of
walking passage from the upper entrance. From here easy walking in a phreatic type
passage 5m high and 6m wide leads to a lowering of the roof after about 40m to hands and
knees crawling to what was, in January 2015, a flat out grovel in water, but was sumped in
February 2016. The cave is probably the resurgence for the water seen in Tham Yok
Wiman.
Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka located and explored the cave on 27 January
2015. It was surveyed by the SMCC expedition on 23 February 2016.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 270
Figure 11 – Tham Nam Ook Ru survey
Tham Sua Dao
  NA0144
Grid reference: 47Q 721128 2131203 Altitude: 823m
Length: 126m Vertical range: 17m
From the school in Ban Nam Pua Phatthana a track leads across a dry stream bed and then
ascends to the cave entrance which is about 500m from the school.
The cave was used as a Communist Party of Thailand base. The large entrance passage
soon closes down and turns right for a few metres to a chamber. On the left at the back of
the chamber is a rift with a 4m pitch which has not been descended.
In March 2013 the cave was surveyed as far as the 4m pitch by the SMCC.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 271
Figure 12 – Tham Sua Dao survey
Tham Yok Wiman
! NA0146
Upper entrance: 47Q 720535 2131137 Altitude: 756m
Lower entrance: 47Q 720500 2131155 Altitude: 738m
Length: 234m Vertical range: 26m
Past the main village of Ban Nam Pua Phatthana there is a sign showing the start of the
path, which has a short ladder up from the road. A set of wooden steps can then be followed
steeply uphill for 30m to the upper entrance at the base of the cliff. The lower entrance is
literally right beside the road, being down in the ditch a few metres to the east of the steps.
The upper entrance is 2.5m high by 15m wide and opens into a chamber that is used by
monks. From the chamber there is 30m of easy walking passage before a short section of
narrow passage up to a small chamber with a rift that descends to a pitch. From the
chamber there is also a small passage heading back towards the surface that hasn't been
pushed beyond a low section. The rift descends for 3m to the head of a pitch which drops
15m into the lower streamway.
The lower entrance drops from the roadside ditch into a small chamber and then there is a
5m crawl to a walking passage which meets the stream. The stream passage, which has
mud banks and obviously floods in the wet season ends at a junction with a larger passage.
To the left soon chokes while to the right there are two ways, either following the stream or
up and over a mud bank, to the high rift passage where the 15m pitch from the upper cave
enters. Unfortunately the cave soon sumps beyond this point.
Tham Yok Wiman is probably the upstream end of the underground stream that resurges at
Tham Nam Ook Ru.
The upper cave was briefly explored in March 2013 by Glenn Washburn. The upper cave
was more thoroughly investigated by Rob and Helen Harper and Tomek Wyderka on 27
January 2015. In January 2016 the SMCC expedition explored and surveyed both the upper
and lower series.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 272
Photograph 10 – James Begley admiring the sump pool in Tham Yok Wiman
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
Photograph 11 – James Begley and Emma Porter in Tham Yok Wiman
(photograph by Estelle Sandford)
SMCC Journal 13(6) 273
Figure 13 – Tham Yok Wiman survey
References
1. Ellis, Martin (2015) "Thailand's Longest and Deepest Caves: A Caving Guide"
Martin Ellis, Shepton Mallet ISBN 978-1-326-43857-9 84pp
2. Harper, Rob (2015) "Not the fifty cave walk" unpublished report, 20pp
SMCC Journal 13(6) 274
Appendices
Cave Data Summary
Name Code Area Co-ordinates Altitude Length VR
Cave NA0052 NA0052 Nam Pua 47Q 719749 2133129 832 ≈150 ≈8
Cave NA0152/NA0153 NA0152 Central East 47Q 718497 2145008
47Q 718485 2145030
1,395
1,371
190 81
Cave NA0174 NA0174 South 47Q 717842 2142074 1,249 17 10
Cave NA0185 NA0185 Nam Pua 47Q 718601 2136903 1,111 ≈115
Cave NA0186 NA0186 Nam Pua 47Q 718684 2136841 1,110
Cave NA0193 NA0193 Nam Pua 47Q 719784 2133113 835 ≈40
Cave NA0194 NA0194 Nam Pua 47Q 718232 2137727 1,165 ≈8 ≈5
Cave NA0195 NA0195 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 720555 2131150 750 ≈50
Cave NA0199 NA0199 South 47Q 717690 2142043 1,289 13 8
Caves NA0187 NA0187 Nam Pua 47Q 718731 2136770 1,116
Shaft NA0197 NA0197 Nam Pua 47Q 718974 2136663 1,102 ≈30 ≈30
Shaft NA0203 NA0203 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 721134 2130378 865
Sink NA0101 NA0101 Central West 47Q 716011 2147889 1,271 0 0
Sink NA0102 NA0102 Central West 47Q 715729 2147881 1,278 0 0
Sink NA0190 NA0190 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 720477 2131159 730 0 0
Sink NA0198 NA0198 Central West 47Q 716042 2147879 1,264 0 0
Sink NA0200 NA0200 South 47Q 716993 2140962 1,236 0 0
Sink NA0201 NA0201 Central East 47Q 719114 2147650 1,389 0 0
Sink NA0202 NA0202 Central East 47Q 719044 2147651 1,388 0 0
Tham Bpaet Sip NA0149 South 47Q 718416 2139751 1,277 907 118
Tham Chang NA0192 Nam Pua 47Q 718728 2133981 975 ≈80 ≈25
Tham Don Mai Phai NA0182 Nam Pua 47Q 718229 2137688 1,160 142 50
Tham Fak Thong NA0077 Nam Pua 47Q 719425 2133386 903 482 22
Tham Kun Nam Pua NA0161 Nam Pua 47Q 719078 2136309 990 50
Tham Lom NA0050 Nam Pua 47Q 718985 2133875 913 184 13
Tham Maa/Tham Yang NA0147 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 721060 2130426
47Q 750454 2130094
846
789
1,990 114
Tham Men NA0132 Central West 47Q 715078 2147949 1,293 283 46
Tham Men Dip NA0181 South 47Q 719276 2140054 1,406 142 44
Tham Nam Ook Ru NA0054 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 720293 2130676 710 91 2
Tham Nam Pua NA0162 Nam Pua 47Q 719145 2136288 988 140
Tham Nan NA0051 Nam Pua 47Q 718716 2133952 974 ≈340 37
Tham Pha Thong NA0164 North East 47Q 719366 2152294 1,363 144 84
Tham Pip NA0189 Nam Pua 47Q 719148 2136859 1,099
Tham Rai Phin NA0142 North East 47Q 719298 2152044 1,392 487 178
Tham Samlang NA0183 Nam Pua 47Q 718254 2137480 1,150 ≈45 ≈25
Tham Sua Dao NA0144 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 721128 2131203 823 126 17
Tham Thip NA0188 Nam Pua 47Q 718952 2136689 1,090 ≈60 ≈15
Tham Thompo NA0191 Nam Pua 47Q 718465 2134215 994 ≈50 ≈36
Tham Tom Som NA0184 Nam Pua 47Q 718369 2137321 1,180 ≈105
Tham Yang Pha Ra NA0196 Nam Pua 47Q 718549 2137079 1,106 ≈80
Tham Yok Wiman NA0146 Ban Nam Pua
Phatthana
47Q 720535 2131137
47Q 720500 2131155
756
738
224 26
January 2015 Expedition Members
Helen Harper (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK
Rob Harper (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK
Tomek Wyderka, Chiang Mai, Thailand
February 2015 Expedition Members
Phil Collett (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Oxfordshire, UK
Ivan Hollis (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
Aye Htwe, Bangkok, Thailand
February 2016 Expedition Members
Keith Batten (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
James Begley (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
John Biffin (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
SMCC Journal 13(6) 275
Jo Campbell (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), West Sussex, UK
Mike Clayton (Craven Pothole Club), Shropshire, UK
Geraldine Collett, Oxfordshire, UK
Phil Collett (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Oxfordshire, UK
Claire Dummer (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
Paul Dummer (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
Martin Ellis (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Phetchabun, Thailand
Andy Goddard (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Wiltshire, UK
Rob Harper (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK
Ivan Hollis (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK
Sean Howe (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Bristol, UK
Aye Htwe, Bangkok, Thailand
Emma Porter (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Shropshire, UK
Estelle Sandford (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK
Expedition Diaries
2015
Tue 20 Jan HH & RH arrive Chiang Mai. Meet TW.
Wed 21 Jan Get provisions and drive to Ban Mani Phruk
Thu 22 Jan Tham Pha Phueng – tourist trip
Make arrangements for walk with Wirot
Fri 23 Jan Jungle trek: walk to first camp
Sat 24 Jan Jungle trek: Tham Thompo, Tham Chang, Tham Nan, Tham Fak
Thong, Cave NA0052, Cave NA0193.
Sun 25 Jan Jungle trek: Tham Kun Nam Pua, Tham Nam Pua, Tham Pip, Tham
Yang Pha Ra, Cave NA0185, Cave NA0186, Caves NA0187.
Mon 26 Jan Jungle trek: Tham Thip, Shaft NA0197, Tham Samlang, Tham Tom
Som, Tham Don Mai Phai, Cave NA0194. Near new ranger station:
Cave NA0181.
Tue 27 Jan Ban Nam Pua Phatthana: Tham Nam Ook Ru, Sink NA0190, Tham
Yok Wiman, Cave NA0195, Tham Maa, Tham Yang
Wed 28 Jan Leave Ban Mani Phruk and drive back to Chiang Mai.
Sun 22 Feb Drive from Lom Sak to Pua
Mon 23 Feb Tham Maa – PC IH
Tue 24 Feb Tham Fak Thong & Tham Long – PC IH
Thu 26 Feb Leave Pua
2016
Sun 14 Feb Expedition personnel get together in Nan.
Mon 15 Feb Drive to Ban Mani Phruk
Tue 16 Feb Tham Pha Phueng – CD, ES, JaB, JC, AG looked at entrance series
and waterfall inlet series to the unclimbed P7
Tham Rai Phin – RH, KB rigged to bottom of second bypass pitch
Tham Pha Thong – PD, JB unable to rig as didn't have good drill
Tham Bpaet SipMC, EP, ME, SH rigged P10 and surveyed to first
chamber
Wed 17 Feb Tham Rai Phin – JC RH CD KB explored to final pitch
Tham Pha Thong – PD JB explored to sump
Tham Bpaet Sip – EP MC SH AG surveyed lower series
Cave NA0152/NA0153 ES, JaB, ME surveyed upper cave to pitch
SMCC Journal 13(6) 276
and investigated start of lower cave
Sink NA0101, Sink NA0102 and Sink NA0198 – PC GC
Thu 18 Feb Move to Ban Pang Kae
Tham Men CD PD SH AG guided up to this cave from the NA0103
sink doline
Sink NA0103 - PC
Fri 19 Feb Cave NA0181 PD CD JaB ES surveyed wet cave to undescended
4m climb
Tham Rai Phin KB JB RH dropped final pitch to choke. Surveyed
and derigged
Tham Bpaet Sip – MC EP SH AG finished survey
Sat 20 Feb Tham Pha Thong – CD JC SH AG JB PD surveyed and derigged
Cave NA0152/NA0153 – ES JaB MC EP explored and surveyed
Sink NA0200 & Cave NA0199 – KB RH PC ME
Sun 21 Feb Sink NA0174 – SH JB MC EP
Tham Bpaet Sip JB MC EP continued exploration & survey of the
passage from the doline
Sink NA0201 and Sink NA0202 – PD CD AG PC GC IH AH
Cave NA0181 – RH JaB ES JC KB
Mon 22 Feb Tham Bpaet Sip – EP MC JC AG finished exploration & survey of the
passage from the doline
Tham Pha Phueng PD CD GC SH JB KB short trip to entrance
passage
Move to Pua
Tue 23 Feb Tham Nam Ook Ru – ME JaB ES EP MC surveyed
Tham Yok Wiman ME JaB ES EP MC upper and lower series
surveyed
Tham Yang – PD CD JC AG surveyed to pitch connecting to Tham
Maa
Shaft NA0203 – RH SH JB KB found entrance when looking for Tham
Maa
Tham Maa RH SH JB KB explored to downstream sump and
surveyed back to Tham Yang pitch
Wed 24 Feb Tham Maa RH JC KB AG JaB ES EP MC surveyed downstream
and upstream sections
Thu 25 Feb Leave Pua and drive to Lom Sak
Acknowledgements
The Ghar Parau Foundation for a £525 grant to the 2016 expedition.
The 'base camp crew' of Yuphin, En, Aye and Gandar for doing all the cooking.
Neil Walmsley for the loan of hangers
The BEC for the loan of a DistoX.
SMCC Journal 13(6) 277
Research
Full-text available
Report on the caves of the Doi Phuka National Park, Nan, Thailand. Includes descriptions and surveys of Thailand's deepest caves.
Book
This is a cavers' guide to the 20 longest and deepest caves in Thailand. Only caves that have been surveyed to at least a basic grade have been included.
Not the fifty cave walk" unpublished report
  • Rob Harper
Harper, Rob (2015) "Not the fifty cave walk" unpublished report, 20pp SMCC Journal 13
Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Oxfordshire, UK Claire Dummer (Shepton Mallet Caving Club)
  • Jo Campbell
  • West Sussex
  • Uk Mike Clayton
Jo Campbell (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), West Sussex, UK Mike Clayton (Craven Pothole Club), Shropshire, UK Geraldine Collett, Oxfordshire, UK Phil Collett (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Oxfordshire, UK Claire Dummer (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK Paul Dummer (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK Martin Ellis (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Phetchabun, Thailand Andy Goddard (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Wiltshire, UK Rob Harper (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK Ivan Hollis (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Somerset, UK Sean Howe (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Bristol, UK Aye Htwe, Bangkok, Thailand Emma Porter (Shepton Mallet Caving Club), Shropshire, UK Estelle Sandford (Bristol Exploration Club), Somerset, UK Expedition Diaries 2015