161 - Pushing KH beyond Arrow Chamber

Sat 10 Jul 1993
Dave Galvin

We planned a six hour trip to look at a question mark beyond Arrow Chamber. Some chance. Neither of us knew the cave, but we managed to find the chamber fairly easily. We rigged a lunatic traverse with no handholds across the two huge holes in the chamber, and reached the undescended pitch via a five metre pitch at the back of Arrow, into a comfortable passage that forks. We took the right hand fork, and rigged a twenty metre pitch into an Alpine pitch-ramp system which quite excited Lummat ! Bolted the twenty metre pitch at the top of the ramp and decided that it was time to return. We reached the entrance pitch at 10 pm, top camp at 2 am. Hmm..

Well, it was like this: I began to feel ill at the top of S'not, and by the time I was prussiking up the entrance pitch, I had lost all strength. I got strung up on the last rebelay, hung around for over an hour and spent about twenty minutes of that hour chundering down the pitch. Eventually, Lummat managed to drag me up. Two hours of aimless wandering along the plateau (vainly following 251° compass bearing) followed, accompanied by lots more chundering, falling into inconveniently placed holes and mad charging through colonies of bunde bushes, and top camp was reached, only about five hours later than we had planned. Top camp was finally found by following through the heavy mist JulianS's, Hugh's and Anthony's zooms, as they hurried around Top camp preparing for a rescue trip down Khöle. Base camp were also getting into action. By the time we had reached Top Camp, Wookey and Wadders had almost reached the top of the toll road. They were saved a trek to top camp thanks to a hastily cobbled together CB in the Wadmobile, three zoom batteries attached together in series and lots of quick thinking on Hugh's part (which I hope someone will get around to ranting about soon, in some more detail)

That was Saturday in Top Camp. Sunday was spent in Pete's tent, all five of us in our pits (me, Lummat, JulianS, Anthony, Hugh) watching the weather doing its act - rain sleet, mist, drizzle, hail, and, of course, over an inch of snow ! Add to this a) no car at the Berg Restaurant and b) no radio contact with Base Camp, and you have the makings of a productive and fun-filled day !

Go caving, they said. It's fun, they said. Expo is ace, they said.


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    161 - Pushing KH beyond Arrow Chamber
    161 - Pushing Surveying hole at bottom of 2nd pitch