Expo - Arriving to Expo For My Second Expedition

Wed 18 Jul 2018
Nadia Raeburn

Blog Author: Tinywoman

Arriving to Expo For My Second Expedition

After a 20 hour train journey from Zagreb I arrived to Bad Aussee at 6:50 in the morning. Stepping off the train I was hit by a wave of fresh mountain air. I was excited to be back! As early as it was I assumed base camp would be asleep and started the hour walk to camp. When I arrived people were up and at it and I was greeted with coffee! After a good chat and an exciting update on the leads, I sorted through my things and had a quick nap. Another walk into town to pick up caving gloves, I always manage to forget those, and it was time to go up the hill.

I had been feeling quite fit and was ready for the walk up to top camp. Unfortunately, I was surprised by the struggle of walking across the plateau. At the end of last Expo I was racing across the rugged landscape. But this year I was back to feeling unsteady and laboured as I picked through the uneven rock. A walk that took me 1.5h at the end of last year, took me 2 hours again. The views on the walk had not changed and were as beautiful as ever. Walking at sunset is a must! Feeling a bit worse for ware we arrived at top camp and I was instantly stoked up and signed up for a trip tomorrow.

Morning arrived and we were all set to go survey the horizontal leads in the new cave Homecoming. Considering it had just been found I thought it would be a short trip to ease me into caving. A 2 hour walk later my legs felt like jelly and it seemed I had signed up to more than I bargained for. The cave descended 200m down a massive fault system.  An impressive bit of cave, but much deeper than I had anticipated. Just after we had gotten off the last rope we heard a distant rumbling, this soon sounded closer and closer as the flood pulse moved down the cave. My last expo I had managed to avoid all flooding so this was my first experience of flooding. The sound of the water was impressive and daunting. We decided to carry on surveying and hope the water would go down by the time we were done. Luckily when we were finished the cave sounded the same as when we had entered.

We started the ascent a bit apprehensive of flooding, there had been no rain since the cave had been found, and therefore there was uncertainty as to where the water would come down. Luckily the ropes were all dry and we had nothing to worry about. 200m of prussgiking was more than I wanted and the walk back took it out of me. I think my big mistake was setting off expecting to keep up with cavers who had been on expedition for the last week and a half.  Come next week 200m will seem like a walk in the park! Today however, I needed a rest so a quick walk down to base camp and a few bottles of beer.


Edit this entry. Survex files on this date:
Wallets on this date:
    2018#15 Homecoming cave ['notes2', 'notes1', 'plan2', 'plan1']
    2018#72 Homecoming_4th_pitch_tube ['Austria_Homecoming_4th_pitch_tube-1s', 'Austria_Homecoming_4th_pitch_tube-1s'…
Logbook trips on this date:
    plateau - Solo walking in area of 115 entrances [and CUCC-PS01-2018]
    Homecoming - Hobnob Hallway
    Expo - Arriving to Expo For My Second Expedition
    Expo - My First Expo