Rescuers had to wait for flood water to subside before they could help a party of cavers to safety.
The four potholers were reported overdue in Tatham Wife Hole on the western slopes of Ingleborough, Yorkshire’s second highest fell.
The Clapham-based Cave Rescue Organisation was alerted about 7.15pm on Monday when the two men aged 43 and 48 and two women, 28 and 29, were reported not to have emerged from the underground system, 450m (1,476ft) up on the fellside.
A team spokesperson said: “The first CRO team found the entrance to the cave impassable due to flooding following heavy rain.
“As water levels fell CRO was able to enter the cave and found four cavers sheltering in the first chamber.
“All were hauled out to the surface and accompanied down to the road at the Ingleton Granite Quarries.”
The rescue of the four cavers was the team’s 41st of the year, the previous rescue being a lamb that had fallen down another pothole, Rowten Pot in Kingsdale last Thursday.