161 - Forbidden Land

Thu 25 Jul 1996
Chris Densham

Better sense having been cast to one side, we passed Stairway to Hell to reach Forbidden Land. The hanging death was the worst I have seen, & the route has nothing to to recommend it. The redeeming feature is the direction of travel & strongly drafting _big_ passage. Turned left at the big chossy junction whereupon the quality suddenly improved. Rigged a ladder barely off a thread, then surveyed off right* in the big passage. Double back right, down the poxy hole, or up to climb an aven? 3 peple, 3 routes. The poxy hole went - soon to a big chamber. Down right, following the stream, or straight ahead? Both ways went - straight ahead was big, ending in the side of a huge rift pitch. Could this be a connection to 136? Following the stream also went, soon to leave it, some occasional crawling along an otherwise sizeable rift heading SW. Ended at a traverse needing rope. Returned to the ladder (previously free climb by A + Wookey) & popped in a bolt to get into the chamber left at the jct* above. Down was choss to a small pitch. But past some lovely conglomerate stals (formed by erosion) was a climb some draughting phreas popping out surprisingly at the head of a 6-7 second rattle. Even more surprisingly we survived the return through Stairway to Hell.

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