Fri 29 Jul 2011
Edvin Deadman

Underground at 1.30pm on Friday, after stalling Nial for as long as possible. Down to camp to drop off food then back up to the Wares to drop the pitch Kathryn, Holly and I found on the first camping trip (25/07/11).

On the way we found a monstrous rub on Chalk and Cheese pitch so that was later rebolted - here's the rigging diagram:

Chalk and Cheese updated rigging topo

Anyway, in the Wares, Nial bolted the pitch. It's called Bird on a Wire because the rigging looked a bit like this:

Bird on a Wire rigging diagram

Used up all of the rope (~80m?) but still going down. Too low for a Tunnocks connection? Back to Butlins for a toasty nights sleep. The following morning we went back to the pitch with more rope, but at the end it was still going down. We then blew our whistles in case anyone in Tunnocks would here us, but no luck so we derigged and trudged back to camp for a conciliatory cuppa.

Still a couple of hours left before bedtime so we had a look at (QM ) at the back end of Dead Good Bat Chamber. Up a horrible, rubbish, chossy, shit climb then across a traverse and we saw.... walking sized phreatic passage stomping of into distance, whooo! Called this "a Grand Day Out". The passage continues to a stoop through a puddle which is about 1cm deeper than any pair of wellies. After 50-60m it ends in a large chamber (with a dead bat). On the left is a pitch (QMA) and right was a stream canyon which we followed until a handline was required.

Back to camp for a slightly chilly night as we all had wet feet. The following morning we went back to A Grand Day Out. Below the handline the passage slopes very steeply down a couple of 10m ramps (the first of which we rigged with an ~10m rope. Things get a bit smaller (The Chicken Run) and we got to a junction. Right continues to a rift passage for ~20m to a small chamber with a stream entering from a ramp (QMC - but very small) and another small passage (QMC) leading off at the bottom. Left goes through a constriction (A Close Cave) to a pitch of about 20m:

Rigging topo: pitch beyond 'A Close Cave' squeeze

Halfway down the main hang, a window leads to a passage which becomes progressively smaller, until after ~15m even Kathryn wouldn't fit. At the bottom of the pitch, the passage turns left after 5m to a small pit. At the bottom, below a small pile of rocks, is a small passage (QMB). Across the pit, up a 2m mud slope the passage continues but gets very muddy. Exploration ended at a low section with a puddle and a very high risk of getting wet.

Got back to butlins at ~6.30pm for our final nights kip. Night shift headed out at around 12.30am, after their leads died.

On the final morning, we dismantled the camp into:

  • 5 tacklesacks
  • 1 pelicase
  • 1 bundle of roll mats
  • 1 big green army bag
  • 3 daren drums

Turns out carrying this between 3 is a bit of a killer, especially as we were rapidly accumulating rope, from derigging as we went! Halfway through the Underworld moral was at a low point and we are breaking ourselves shuttling gear back and forth. Then we heard voices, Hooray! - Holly, Emma, Olaf and Gareth, had heroically come down to help carry stuff - heroes!!! Handed over lots of gear to them and they headed out while we slowly paella'ed 200m of rope up to Gaffered and derrigged. At the top of Gaffered we met the others again. They had come back to help us carry more of our gear out of the cave - absolute heroic legends! Left ~300m of dirty rope at the top of Gaffered and emerged at 7.30pm to a cracking sunset (and cracking knee joints).

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Survex files on this date:
Wallets on this date:
    2011#10 ['elev0002', 'elev0003', 'notes0001', 'notes0002', 'plan0001', 'plan0002', 'eleā€¦
    2011#14 ['notes0001', 'notes0002', 'plan', 'elev', 'notes0003', 'notes0004']
    2011#18 ['notes0001', 'notes0002', 'plan', 'elev']
    2011#23 ['notes0001', 'notes0002', 'plan_and_elev']
Logbook trips on this date:
    204 Sandpit
    204 Tourist trip
    Steinbrucken - Convenience series - channel 5