Application for Grant Aid

Submitted on: 10 Jul 2015

Expedition details (GPF2015b-002)

Expedition Name (& Club): Nan 2016 (Shepton Mallet Caving Club)
Destination country: Thailand
Region: Nan Province
Lat: 19.2542 Long: 101.0426 Elevation: 332 m
MEF funding: none

Leader: Mr Paul Dummer
Total cavers: 17
Cavers ≤25 yrs old: 1
Cavers 25-35 yrs old: 1
UK/nonUK cavers: 15/2
Eligible for grant aid: 0
Alex Pitcher nominations: 0
Expedition dates: 5th Feb 2016 - 28th Feb 2016
Duration (days): 24
Man-days in field: 306 Man-days travelling: 102
Brief Expedition objectives:

List a short summary of the main Expedition objectives.

Carry on exploration from 2014 of the last 2 vertical caves we left going, carry on with the exploration of the horizontal caves we left going and to continue finding and exploring all the known caves we were shown in 2012 and 2014 by our very friendly local guide we found during our 2012 expedition
How can the GPF support your Expedition?:

Please explain the aspects of the trip which make it eligible for Ghar Parau funding.

GPF is a very important foundation within the caving world and so very important within the Shepton Mallet Caving Club, as a club we try to support the GPF as much as we possibly can. Any grant money that we can get goes completely into the expedition fund, we use the money for all caving equipment but especially for ropes, Nan province is full of vertical caves so the wear and tear on ropes is great, also we need to regularly replace ropes as the years go by
Detailed description of objectives:

Give a more detailed account of the purpose of the trip, including any particular known caves you intend to visit, specific areas where you will explore for new cave, and scientific experiments you will attempt.

Tham Pha Phueng and HQ Area

Tham Pha Phueng Waterfall Inlet Series - bolt up P7
Fossil Series - bolt traverse to bypass inlet gours
Vadose Oxbow - survey loop is not closed. Inlets?
C8(?) inlet on survey between P7 and Fitch Pitch
Survey inlet and Black Stal Passage
Resurvey from P7 to Fitch Pitch

Cave NA0100/Cave NA0141 Survey inlet passages. Force connection

Tham Men Were all the pitches descended? Survey the pitches

Northern Area

Tham Rai Phin Continue exploration and survey.

Tham Pha Tong Explore and survey.

Cave NA0165 Shaft down to 1m x 1m crawling passage

Sink NA0088 Northern track passes close to this sink

Tham Pha Daeng Have Wilot guide us to this cave to confirm we have visited the correct one.

Tham Pha Dam Long way north. Will need guide.

Central Area

Caves NA0152 & NA0153 Said to be narrow, but long. NA0153 is stream sink

Cave NA0103 Explore and survey.

Cave NA0106 Explore and survey.

Sink NA0107 Investigate with machete

Southern Area

Cave NA0122/NA0135 Descend to streamway at end of Muddy Passage. Muddy, not nice.
Investigate boulders (hole down at Stn 48) & mud slope at very bottom of NA0135. Also low crawl with sound of water at Stn 39

Cave NA0174 Dig through to stream. Linked to NA0176 & NA0177?

Cave NA0181 Easy access from track to new ranger station. 20m of passage to 5m pitch. Active stream.

Shaft NA0176 Linked to NA0174 & NA0177?

Shaft NA0177 Linked to NA0174 & NA0176?

Tham Bpaet Sip Continue exploration and survey.

Tham Ton Som Explore and survey.

Tham Ton Teum Explore and survey.

Shaft NA0138/NA0139 1.5 sec & 2.5 sec drops. Probably connected

Shaft NA0136 2 sec drop down narrow entrance

Tham Din Neao Continue exploration past large holes in mud floor

Shaft NA0150 Right beside track, but hard to spot. 150m from end of Tham Din Naeo. Short drop, but lands on mud.

Other Southern Caves

The Four Shafts Another 4 shafts past Shaft NA0134

The Four Caves Found by following stream up from where it crosses the track south of the first farm and north of the valley with NA0121

The Seven Caves Down in one of the dolines to the north of the first farm. There is said to be a track down into the doline,

Doi Pha Khao Cave On the path to Bo Klua there is a cave that passes under the mountain.

Fountain Resurgence To the east of the end of the track, possibly on the walk to Bo Klua, resurgence with enough force to form a fountain.

Nam Pua - jungle camping required

Tham Chang 80m of passage to undecended 15m pitch. Said to lead to streamway

Tham Don Mai Pai Two undescended pitches - P10 and P15.

Tham Kun Nam Pua The main resurgence. Awkward pitch/sump to cross at entrance

Tham Long Low crawl and ascending side passage not explored.

Tham Nam Pua Flood overflow to main resurgence. 150m to pool with passage seen beyond

Tham Nan Through trip with unexplored side passage.

Tham Thip Undescended pitch of 15m, but dodgy boulders and walls at the pitch

Ban Nam Pua Phatthana - based in Pua

Tham Sua Dao Surveyed to a narrow P4 without draught

Tham Yok Wiman Explored to a P5 with sound of stream below

Sink NA0190 Top entrance to Tham Nam Ook Ru, but may extend upstream

Tham Maa Upstream and downstream ends at crawls. Bring kneepads.

Tham Nam Ook Ru This resurgance has not been explored. Water probably comes from Sink NA0190

Tham Yang 40m of passage to undescended 20m pitch

Tham Goong Reported to be near the village, to the south of Tham Maa

Other caves in the National Park

Tham Pha Kong Ban Pha Rai. Reported to be 100m long with stream

Tham Pha Kao Doi Tham Pha Kao. Surveyed by French to 250m. Active stream

Caves outside the National Park

Tham Huai Khon Chaloem Phra Kiat. In forest wat close to the crossing into Laos

Cave NA0062 Ban Nam Ri Phatthana, in the far NE corner of Nan. Old Communist base now a tourist attraction.
Previous work in this area:

Give details of any previous work in this area by your own and other teams. Include references to reports and articles published on the area, and the names of any local cavers or academics with whom you have discussed the Expedition.

AS GPF know and have copies of, we publish a guide after each of the Thailand expeditions, these guides go into great detail of past exploration of the areas caved in

Expedition Finances


Travel plans:
All British will be flying out of Heathrow to Bangkok, hiring 4 wheel drive Hilux vehicles for the drive up to Nan Province and using during exploration of the area
One vehicle will travel to Lomsak in Thailand to pick up all expedition equipment stored in Thailand

# from UK: 15 Travel costs breakdown (for personnel leaving from the UK):
Total costs from UK: £15,300 Flights 15 x £700 return = £10,500.00
Car Hire 4 x £700 each = £2,800.00
Fuel, Total - £2,000.00

# from outside UK: 2 Travel costs breakdown (for personnel leaving from the UK):
Total costs from outside UK: £250 travel from Loa for 1 person = £200
travel from Chang Mai for 1 person = £50

Travel total: £15,550 Travel p.p. from UK: £1,020
Travel p.p. from outside UK: £125


Total: £4,000 Comments:
Subsistence p.p.: £235 Accommodation = £2,500 Total
Food = £1,500 Total


Total: £850 Comments:
Subsistence p.p.: £50 Ropes = £300.00 Total
Spits/Hangers & rigging kit = £200.00 Total
Drill = £350.00 Total
Exped Total: £20,400 Exped cost p.p. travelling from UK: £1,305
Exped cost p.p. travelling from outside UK: £410
Mean Exped cost per person: £1,200

Other Funding

Total: £0 Comments:
Total shortfall: £20,400 Mean shortfall per person: £1,200

Referees and Report

Please give the names, addresses and phone numbers of two suitably qualified people whom the Committee can contact. You should ensure that they are aware of the objectives of your trip, and that you have their permission for the Committee to contact them.

Referee 1: Mr Alan Butcher
Affiliation: SMCC President

Reason: President of Shepton Mallet Caving Club

Permission obtained?: Yes
Referee 2: Mr Martin Mills
Affiliation: Trustee

Reason: Trustee of the Shepton Mallet Caving Club

Permission obtained?: Yes

Expedition report author: Martin Ellis