Mount Fairy is a very nice little caving area on private property north of Bungendore. It features many passages the size of a wombat hole that are also prized by wombats as a ready-made home. Obviously, they resent the intrusion of cavers making a house-call. Mount Fairy was also once mined for lime for the construction of Canberra, but has since been abandoned for more pure limestone (rest in peace, Jerrara Caves). Several of the mine drives intersect cave passageway, and there are some fascinating mining relics in the area.
Drive to Bungendore and continue on the road to the north until you see Mount Fairy Road and turn onto it. Turn right onto Sandhills Road after crossing the railway line, and follow this to the end. It’s about a 50 minute drive from ANU, and is probably our closest caving area of any real size. Remember, the area is on private property, and permission must be arranged first.
We usually go to Mount Fairy as a day trip, as it’s so close to Canberra. There are no toilets, and the space we park in is pretty exposed, so bring a jumper and raincoat. It is also an enjoyable place to camp, with a rudimentary campground. This is a patch of flat grass by a creek, and there are no facilities whatsoever except those you bring yourself. The campground is public land (we believe), but be polite and request permission to camp from the landholders beforehand. Bring your own firewood, as it gets quite cold in winter…