Maelstrom - "Undersold"

Sat 29 Jul 2023
Joe Stell

Hearing of our great success with this shallow lead, Nadia, having returned from a fishface camping trip the day before, decided she would join us for a nice easy surface trip.

Heading back to the pushing front, we decided that the previous handline climb should in fact be a pitch with a horizontal crawling entry above a rift as this was easier and safer.

Upon reaching the pushing front, the first fun activity was to negotiate the squeeze before pitchhead. Frank managed this with little difficulty and began bolting. Nadia went over and we began surveying from our last station. Finally I went through, finding the squeeze somewhat uncomfortable and we continued surveying through the big wet pitch, getting to a large chamber with two leads off to the left and right which quickly becamce too small for humans, and the main canyon continuing as before, with a nice wet but very sharp rift traverse leading to another somewhat small pitchhead leading to a big, wet chamber.

At this point we decided to turn around, concerned by the forecast. On the way, I struggled with the squeeze (I must have done it wrong) and several pitches, realising that drill bags are heavy and annoying to carry.

We surfaced, headed back to topcamp, and arrived just before the thunderstorms did. We waited for it to mostly clear, then headed back to the carpark.

On the drive back, Nadia claimed we "undersold" everything between the pitches, and described Mahlstrom as a "Yorkshire blackbook" cave

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Survex files on this date:
Wallets on this date:
    2023#56 Mendip Man ['original survey plan of main passage', 'plan56', 'elev56_02', 'LRUDs for rift…
    2023#57 2023-ft-02-part3 Mahlstrom ['elevation', '2023-ft-02_part3_notes1', '2023-ft-02_part3_notes2_4csA8iv', '20…
Logbook trips on this date:
    Maelstrom - "Undersold"