CAVING IN BELGIUM:
THE BELGIAN CAVE GUIDE
Abime de Beaumont & Grotte de Four
à Chaux - Esneux (No. 1)
Abime de Beaumont: X:234,50 Y:136,84
Grotte de Four à Chaux: X:234,40
To find the entrance of the Abime de Beaumont: coming from Tilff
towards Esneux, take a road at your right just before Esneux. A sign says
"Ham". The road climbs up. Park the car there where the road stops
climbing (there is a view-point at your left). Go down (about 30 m.)
a steep track, which starts close to the viewpoint. The entrance of the
cave is at the foot of a group of rocks.
To find the entrance of the "Grotte de Four à Chaux": start at the
bridge of Esneux and drive downstream besides the river (right bank). To
your right you will pass a technical school and a dog training center. Right from you, you will pass a small road that climbs up between the trees.
Park here. Walk up by foot. The road ends at a climbing site. This is a
big, old quarry. The cave is in the right corner of the quarry, at the foot
of the cliff.
The Abime de Beaumont was discovered in 1976 by the C.P.L. of Liège, after
serious works at the entrance. The Grotte de Four à Chaux has been
known for a long time (probably found by the quarriers). In 1988 the G.R.S.C.
found a new gallery (Galerie des Pause des Chanceux) and finally, in 1990,
connected this gallery with the Abime the Beaumont. Unfortunately,
this junction is very unstable and has now again collapsed.
The Abime the Beaumont is open, and so is the Four à Chaux. Both caves
are however controlled by the UBS. Since 03/2007, the cave has been
gated and it closed with a regular UBS-lock.
Length: 492m, Depth: 59 m
The Abime de Beaumont starts with a small pitch (4 m) followed by an awkward
squeeze that gives into a nice pitch (25 m). Halfway down this pitch,
a big platform obliges you to make a re-belay. At the foot of the pitch
you arrive in a big room with some fossilised but massive calcite formations.
This rooms connects with a second room, but both rooms are separated by
an 8 m high wall that you have to scale first and then descend at the
other side (le Pas
du Montagnard). Then a third and fourth room follows. One wall of this
fourth room is covered with flowstone upto 10 me high, very nice to see.
The cave is totally fossil and very dry.
The Four à Chaux is an easy, horizontal cave. It junctions with the Beaumont,
via a difficult squeeze, halfway down the 25 m-pitch
Beaumont: a 55 m rope for the R4 and the P25, and a 20 m rope for the climb+descend
of the "Pas du Montagnard". About 15 karabiners, a few
slings, 5 hangers. There are P-hangers (broches) but often not at the
Four à Chaux: since the junction arrives in the middle of the P25 of the
Beaumont, you'll need 20 m of rope to get down.
This is really a classic cave, with some big rooms, some nice formations
and some rope-work.
Attention: The junction between the two caves has collapsed and can
no longer be done!
here to see the survey