Tom Taylor's Cave

Useful Information

Location: How Stean Gorge, Nidderdale
Open: All year daily 10-18
Classification: ExplainKarst cave
Light: none, bring electric torch.
Dimension: L=150m.
Guided tours: D=20min.
Bibliography: Tony Waltham (1984): Caves, crags and gorges, A guide to the limestone country of England & Wales.
335 pp. Constable, London.
How Stean Gorge, pp 158-161, map, photo.
Address: How Stean Gorge, Lofthouse, Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire HG3 5SF, Tel: +44-1423-755666. Proprietors: H. & P.A. Stevenson
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.



How Stean Beck is a major tributary to the River Nidd. The gorge is reached by a very narrow lane connecting Lofthouse and Stean. Where the river is crossed by the first bridge it is a rocky ravine only a few meters deep. It therefore comes as a surprise, when crossing the next bridge, just above the cafe, the gorge is now 15 m deep. Upstream, a cliff top path leads to How Stean Tunnel. Not recommend as there is a pool part way along the passage, which is deeper than the average wellington. Down stream the path follows a series of slippery ledges until Tom Taylor's cave is reached. The cave starts as a tall, narrow canyon, and wooden steps lead down into the tiny stream cave. Upstream the cave widens and rises slightly. Following a roof joint it heads, almost in a straight line for the upper entrance which is called Cat Hole. There are other caves nearby, eg Elgin Hole etc but they are low and muddy and best avoided.

Text by Tony Oldham (2002). With kind permission.