204 - 161, Runnel Stone area plus partial derig

Tue 21 Aug 2012

T/U: 12½hrs

Since the last week of expo looked like it was going to be low on manpower, we elected to start the 204 derig while there were still a few people about. First, however, there was some pushing to do. Becka installed some conservation tape in Lärchen Republic whilst Holly and I went to the end to play hunt the draught. The lower level of the rift seemed just as dead as the previous day, so Holly climbed up to the top. This seemed not to go very far apart from to a pitch back into the lower level, and there didn't seem to be any draught, so we elected to try our luck elsewhere. Round the corner is another rift parallel to but not connected to the first. It was my turn to shin up into it, and an easy 6m climb led to a high level rift passage with a draught - much more promising, so we fished out the survey gear.

This area proved to be quite complicated. The obvious route led quickly to a pitch. Back near the start, a short climb on the right led to another rift passage which led to the same pitch at roof level. There may be a continuation on the far side. Whilst surveying this high level passage, I spotted a roof tube doubling back over our point of entry. Becka climbed into this and found another climb up into a roof tube doubling back again to head over the pitch - hence this area is "Spiral Staircase".

The high level continuation proved to be a draughty (hence very cold) ~4m round phreatic tube. Becka kept finding junctions that I felt obliged to sketch in minute detail, much to Becka's annoyance. The main drag is heading towards the end of Blown Away but is quite a bit higher up, which is good news since the air in Blown Away goes up an aven. Eventually the phreatic passage turned into a rifty bit.

The continuing rift carries a draught and has an aven above - overall looks pretty good. The passage is called "Bundestrasse" [note to Olaf or anyone with a German spellchecker: I have spelt this exactly as intended.]

At that point we called it a day and headed out, derigging to the top of Fat Cat. Some of the ropes were left in, including the connection traverse - these are indicated on the rigging topo earlier in this log book. Then a long slog up Brian's Phat Shaft, which is now a muddy horror inducing jammer slip most of the way up. Emerged to fine weather having once again avoided a drenching in King Carbide.

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Survex files on this date:
Wallets on this date:
    2012#38 ['notes4', 'notes2', 'notes1', 'notes3', 'plan2', 'plan3b', 'plan3a', 'notes5',…
Logbook trips on this date:
    234 - Hauchhöle - Slapper Pink
    204 - 161, Runnel Stone area plus partial derig
    107 entrance