Cambridge Underground 1986-7 p 11

Guidebook Description to the 144 Stellerweg Connection

144 is described in the 1984 edition of Cambridge Underground. The route is described from the entrance to the bottom at about -285m. The following guide starts from the large chamber now called "The Yellow Brick Road" at about -200m.

Crossing the Yellow Brick Road from the 11m pitch leads to a 25m pitch down a layered mud wall. About 3m to the left of the tube leading to the pitch, a series of small tubes and ramps may be found. The main tube terminates after about 4m at a small hole, Roddick's Dive, which is best rigged with a 6m ladder. This drops through a restriction and down a rock slab to a muddy sloping landing.

traversing across the mud around to the right leads after about 10m to a 2m climb into a passage. This is the passage that can be seen across the head of the 25m pitch. To the right, the pitch is encountered after about 5m. To the left, the passage continues for some 25m, past a number of ramp tubes on the left. The passage is then blocked by orange sand infill. The rift above the infill has been entered by bolting (two bolts on the left hand wall), and rapidly ascends and narrows. At its furthest, there is an undescended small hole in the floor down which water can be heard.

Back at the infill, the way on is down the ramp tube on the left. This is descended on a slope of about 45 degrees for about 60m until a large dry passage is entered. To the left this becomes narrower, with steeply sloping soil ledges and a narrow rift below. This direction has not been pushed, but is resumed to be the same rift as that at the bottom of Roddick's Dive, and probably the same as that below the 11m pitch entering the Yellow Brick Road.

To the right, the passage continues large over a broken rock floor with a trench in the middle. At the point where the trench opens out, and drops for about 2m, two ways on are possible. Descent into the first (caution - unstable rock) leads to a rift between boulders and a climb back up into the passage, above a hole. Alternatively, a traverse to the right leads to the same point.

From here the route follows a series of winding passages generally floored with loose dry yellow or grey sand, with several shorts descents over boulders. The draught is the best guide until the passage breaks out into a chamber which is itself a large alcove about 20m up the side of a much larger chamber.

Back tracking approximately 20m leads via a squueze, through sandy chambers to a muddy low crawl to the bottom of the pitch. This is very draughty and damp. Following the passage downstream, it develops into a vadose canyon with the stream in the floor. After approximately 20m another 10m pitch is met. By following the steep wet tube on the right you pop out 3.5m from the bottom of this pitch. A wide chimney brings you to the floor in the rift below, with Stellerweg Big Pitch to the left, and 115 to the right.