Gaping Gill.

Ron Bliss, Tony Tanner, Frank Hardy, Gerald, and Dick Wade.

Ron having mentioned at the farm on Whit Sunday that the Bradford Caving Club were holding their Whit winch meet we agreed to take advantage of it on the Tuesday.

A real Red Rose crack of dawn start, we were at Gaping Gill for about ten am. We paid our three quid and received our tallies, from 75 to 79. The board at the chair said up to number 39. We waited, watching hordes of school children descending and returning to the surface. Somebody worked out that we had about two hours to wait.
Frank and Gerald decided to enter via Bar Pot which was laddered. Three of us waited, sunning ourselves. Eventually the hordes of children thinned out, we joined the queue and in turn descended. This is potholing the easy way, passing at a reasonable rate down the impressive chasm.

As we regrouped at the bottom, Gerald turned up closely followed by Frank, I was surprised that the Bar Pot route had taken so long, I believe Frank took a wrong turning.
We spent some time in the main chamber, Ron and I taking photographs, it was then decided to have a trip to Mud Hall. An easy walk, but one that was slowed as Ron and I took some more photos, we nearly had mutiny at one point. This passage must have been a beautiful sight when it was first entered, now all the lower formations have a liberal coating of mud.

Eventually we reached the end of the navigable passage, more photos of formations and then slowly we made our way out. Ron soon spotted another formation that begged to be recorded. As is usual our slave flashes were only working intermittently. Two people had just passed us going in, using carbide lamps, these gave them a good level of illumination. I suggested that we ask them to pose in front of the formations. As they returned they were accosted, the girl answered, ďAh you want a French model?Ē, her English was excellent, it only dawned on me that she was in fact French, as she and Ron engaged in short bursts of the language. The pictures were taken and thanks rendered in Franglais we all made our way back to the main chamber.

There were only six people waiting at the winch, so we decided to get out while we could, a short but entertaining trip, and so effortless! As we returned to the cars Tony took a second trip, straight into a bed of nettles. As to the photos, mine didnít come out, and Ron has doubts about his.

Dick Wade

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