Barbon Pot -  Easter Monday.

As I dropped delicately, through a mass of rusty rotting refuse, I began to see the other side of Pete Seed’s chivalrous offer, that I take his place on the trip. The bugger! but Andy soon had the ladder attached to an old bedstead and we descended a nice 60’foot shaft with our 50 foot of ladder’, dropping onto a mass of sheep bones. A large cavern opened out at the end of which a route through a boulder choke & a short crawl led to a climb down, into another chamber, Whoop Hall. A small stream was located in the floor and followed upstream until the choke as reencountered. Downstream continued in rather thrutchy going with numerous obstacles & crawls. After 500 feet of this nonsense, the cave assumed more generous proportions &  soon we were walking down a fine streamway leading all too ‘soon to the sizeable ‘66’ Cavern.

Negotiating a boulder choke and some sandy crawls regained the small stream that ran away into a bedding plane which got rather tight & committing. We both agreed that there is a way on here for a slim (Seed type) caver with a bit of bottle. How much passage lies beyond is anybody’s guess. A dye test would be useful to locate the resurgence & see if it’s worth pushing. The return was uneventful until the pitch was reached. A small crawl below this was discovered leading via a squeeze to an un-climbable drop of 15 feet into a sizeable passage. This is probably the upstream continuation of the main passage on its way to the sink in Barkin Beck. The passage is not the choked rift mentioned in the guide so again a question mark as to whether it’s been descended & pushed. It certainly looks navigable from the top of the pit. The exit was not quite straightforward, as we were 10 foot short of ladder at the bottom of the entrance shaft. Eventually got up, but Hurricane had a bit of trouble. After strong language had failed to get him more than five feet off the ground, a more technical approach was sought, This involved climbing up the other side of the shaft and, with a tight line, penduluming across onto the ladder. Sixty foot of ladder is recommended to avoid embarrassment, On watching Andy emerge, it was noticed that a Troll suit is almost indistinguishable from the other rubbish on the tip. It took me five minutes to realise that Andy was actually out. No. offence, Sedbo, but you knew the state of Andy’s gear. All in all a most interesting cave with a couple of leads worth a further look. Gloves are a must, as is 60 foot of ladder - isn’t it, Andy? Give him a big hand, folks.

H. St. Lawrence.

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