204 - 204c Derig

Tue 04 Sep 2001

After bierfest had streaming shits, probably due to dodgy roast chicken. Dr. Phil gave me a couple of immodium tablets, and that dried me up for the walk up on Monday evening. Apparently Immodium usually wears off within 24 hours or so, so I wanted to have a crap before even thinking of going underground, to see if my guts were still pumping out dishwater. Didn't especially fancy getting caught short midway up a loose pitch - it would just be too ironic. Eventually it got to about 7 pm & I thought "Sod it" & got out of my pit & put my gear on, just in time for the first of the derig team to emerge. Strolled through the clag to the entrance, where a strange thundering sound could be heard. Clambered down to the pitch head, where I could see that the pitch below was quite well watered. Considered jacking quite seriously for a while, but decided to suck it and see. Although a considerable stream was falling down the course of the rope, it was quite well concentrated and possible to avoid (mostly by judicious fending off the wall). The 10 ft above the final rebelay was a bit crap because the rope was sharing a gully with the water. Took out the rebelay, changed over & prussiked out derigging as I went. At the pitch head I was beginning to think 204c wasn't so bad after all, and was sussing out what needed gardening & where extra bolts should be put. By the time I'd stuffed the rope into a bag I quite liked the place. Then as I was ascending one of the clambers up to the surface a large block fell out, and ended up resting against one of my knees. Took a while to work out how to let the boulder drop without it hitting my other foot or me falling down the climb, but sorted it out. Job done. This entrance is still well dicey. However, careful, considered kicking down of loose crap, combined with a more defensive rig may make it OK for regular use. P.S. eventually managed to move bowels some 82 hours after taking medicine. Immodium is good shit.