Updated 6th June, 15th October, 14th, 24th November, 7th December 2014; 19th February 2016; 1st July 2018
One entry point into the 4km-long Riocueva-Cañaos system. (There are, or were, 4 entrances, documented in the Torca Cañaos description.) This gated entrance is on the south side of a steep gully running down to the río Aguanaz. It is possibly best approached straight down a field opposite a house by the main road to the boundary where a short jungle bash and climb down reaches the gated entrance. The other route is along an overgrown path to the east and north which drops down to the entrance. The resurgence complex is below.
|4043||Torca de los Cañaos||The 14m deep shaft entrance where a number of passages lead off. The "top entrance".|
|4084||shaft (capped)||This has only been seen from inside Riocueva-Cañaos where concrete and surface debris litters the floor of an aven which presumably reached the surface before it was capped.|
|4042||Cueva Riocueva||The green-gated entrance to archaeological excavations and the rest of the system. The "middle entrance".|
|4085||cave||The "bottom entrance" into the Riocueva-Cañaos network close to the flood resurgence.|
|4086||cave||Hole just above the flood resurgence.|
|4088||resurgence||A number of places below the cave where water resurges in dry weather.|
The cave system has been mainly explored and documented by Spanish cavers. Published articles about exploration can be found in at least Cuadernos V - VI and Cantabria Subterránea vol. 1 and these articles need putting in the bibliography and below. The surveys from these articles are found below, although they are now incomplete. A 1983 video on YouTube shows the Riocueva passage and the route down to the stream, then the return.
Archaeological work has been carried out in this entrance, most recently in 2014. A blog for the Mauranus Project has a number of details, including pictures from 26/10/2014 when the Matienzo Caves Project team entered through the Riocueva entrance to survey the links through to Torca de los Cañaos. A summary of finds can be found in Ruiz Cobo J and Muñoz Fernández E, 2013, pp 381 - 383. Again, more details will appear here from archaeological references in due course.
As entry to the system cannot normally be gained through this Cueva Riocueva entrance, and to keep the description of the passages under one heading, all the Matienzo Caves Project exploration in, and passage descriptions of the system are documented in site 4043, Torca de los Cañaos. Only photos and video taken in the Riocueva entrance passage, the western Galería del Tembleque and the nearby streamway are linked below.
Link to entry in the Cave Diving Sump Index.
Reference: Meijide Calvo M, 1982; Gutiérez Cuenca Enrique and Hierro Gárate José Ángel, 2012; Ruiz Cobo J and Muñoz Fernández E, 2013; anon., 2014b (Easter logbook); anon., 2014c (summer logbook); anon., 2014d (autumn logbook); Hierro Gárate José Ángel y Gutiérrez Cuenca Enrique, 2016a; Hierro Gárate José Ángel y Gutiérrez Cuenca Enrique, 2016b
Entrance pictures : yes
Underground pictures : autumn 2014
Video : 1983 video (YouTube) : autumn 2014 (YouTube)
Detailed survey : detailed entrance survey from Ruiz Cobo J and Muñoz Fernández E, 2013,p381 : from Cuadernos V-VI (photo) : from Cantabria Subterránea vol. 1 :
incomplete, draft pdf Easter 2014 : after summer 2014 : after autumn 2014 - svg - pdf
Line Survey :
On area survey :
Survex file : See Torca de los Cañaos
Passage direction rose diagram: 1/7/2018