ARK: Survival Evolved Wiki
Disambig North West Cave is referred to as "Northwest Hollow" in ARK: Survival Evolved Mobile

North West Cave
Cave in the North-Western Snow-Area of the Island.
Interior Map

North West Cave Cavemap

The Island Topographic Map
19.3° Lat, 19.0° Lon
Fur Armor Fur
Artifact of the Skylord
Artifact of the Skylord
19.6° Lat, 18.4° Lon
Artifact level
Loot quality
Yellow Crate Yellow
Red Crate Red

The North West Cave is a cave in the northwest of The Island. It contains the Artifact of the Skylord Artifact of the Skylord, needed to summon the Dragon Dragon. Its entrance barely fits players on foot (mounts are too large to enter the cave organically). The inner tunnels are extremely narrow, often requiring crouching to explore. Watch your feet and take it very slow, as there are pitfalls that deal 5000 instant damage - even if you descend with a grappling hook. If you fall into these pits, retrieval of your gear is only possible by grappling your body out of the pit. Your body may fall through the world if you die to the pits, making it impossible to retrieve your gear without cheats.

After the update, this cave contains very little loot, excluding the artifact.

Creatures in the cave include Araneo and Onyc and spawn at normal levels.


Recommended Equipment[]


  • Hug the right wall to reach the Artifact of the Skylord quickly with grappling hooks.
  • You can access the artifact without jumping/grappling by approaching the artifact from the southern cliff. Carefully position yourself on the edge of the cliff to grab the artifact, but take care - if you fall onto the artifact's platform, it's nearly impossible to exit the artifact room without a Grappling Hook.
    • Players can escape the artifact platform to the south by jumping onto the left edge of the southern cliff from the obsidian rock.
  • Avoid bringing any tames other than shoulder pets. Even dimorphodons can be instantly killed in the pits while flying at/attacking falling enemies.
  • Enemies in this cave are scarce and easily die to handheld weapons, so bringing other tames/companions is unnecessary.
  • Melee weapons do not work when prone. Bring plenty of ammo. There are some areas in which you can stand so check constantly with the prone key (default X)
  • Several loot crates within this cave are only accessible via grappling over pitfalls. Bring several grappling hooks to maximize rewards from the cave and easily exit the artifact platform.
  • Do not build a foundation within the cave or near the entrance, since this can prohibit the spawning of loot crates.
  • Speed-Run option for Mobile: This path bypasses all loot crates and most creatures spawns. Bring 1 foundation and 1 ceiling. Enter the cave and travel along the right wall. You'll come to a passageway that is mostly obscured until you reach it, which leads to a narrow ice bridge with an explorer note on it. Build the foundation on the very edge of the bridge. Place the ceiling in front of the foundation to extend the bridge. Cross the bridge and jump to the ledge; it will lead you directly to the artifact container. After obtaining the artifact, simply take the same path back out of the cave. You can use photo mode to find the correct path and to scout for any creatures.
  • Bug Repellant can help prevent mobs from sneak-attacking.


Compatible Tamed Creatures[]

This table is incomplete.
You can help us by adding the tamed creatures you know can enter the cave. If the creature can't enter, please exclude it.

Accessibility Ratings:

  • Excellent: Full-Cave Access (Entrance-to-Artifact)
  • Limited: Can Access Portions of the Cave Safely
  • Not Recommended: Can Get Stuck/Unable to Leave Cave


  • The North West Cave is all about your jumping skills. It is a very narrow cave, you will be crouching mostly. You won't encounter many enemies.
  • If you die in the pits, it is sometimes possible to use a grappling hook to retrieve your body. Bring quite a few; it's kind of like fishing.
    • If your corpse becomes an item bag (eaten by a bat) or glitches into the terrain, it's irretrievable. Take lesser gear that you can spare.
  • Users of Grappling Hook Grappling Hooks will find that the pits will kill you far before you actually reach the spikes. Be cautious when using a Grappling Hook to swing over pits.
  • To recover your body in SinglePlayer you must use the cheat God and Infinitestats at the same time as well as ghost or fly to retrieve your body.
  • This cave is so narrow, even dropping items in this cave will cause them to spawn above the cave's roof - permanently lost.
  • A SinglePlayer bug on all platforms caused the artifact to not spawn. Hosting a non-dedicated server would not change this(tested on PC version 324.22, even though the patch notes for 324.16 mentioned the bug is fixed).
  • Using orbit camera in some areas can allow for you to peak outside of the walls and orient yourself.


  • According to the explorer notes, Rockwell discovered the very first piece of Artifact of The Island in this cave.


Creature Accessibility Rideable Notes
Archaeopteryx Archaeopteryx Excellent No
  •  Can be carried in and out by player.
Compy Compy Excellent No
  •  Can keep one on shoulder or bring a whole pack.
Dimorphodon Dimorphodon Limited No
  •  Flying too low over pits or attacking falling creatures will kill them.
Dodo Dodo Excellent No
  •  Can be carried in and out by player, not much use except maybe as a distraction.
Dung Beetle Dung Beetle Excellent No
  •  Can be carried in and out by player, not much use except maybe as a distraction.
Hesperornis Hesperornis Excellent No
  •  Can be carried on shoulder or bring a whole flock, not much use except maybe as a distraction.
Jerboa Jerboa Excellent No
  •  Can be carried in and out by player, not much use except maybe as a distraction, transfer from scorched earth to carry.
Kairuku Kairuku Excellent No
  •  Can be carried in and out by player, not much use except maybe as a distraction.
Mesopithecus Mesopithecus Excellent No
  •  Can keep on shoulder or bring a whole troop, can throw poop.
Microraptor Microraptor Excellent No
  •  Can keep on shoulder or bring a whole flock.
Otter Otter Excellent No
  •  Excellent as insulation when carried on shoulder, will keep you warm from even the coldest temperatures.
Vulture Vulture Excellent No
  •  Can keep on shoulder or bring a whole flock, transfer from scorched earth to carry.