Wot Dabney goes South with the RRCPC
Team: Dominic, Steve. Pete and
not a very impressive entrance, more like the manhole in my alley. But never
judge a cave by its manhole cover. Dominic from
The entrance was a narrow rift climb and was not awkward so much as very tiring indeed. Eventually the passage relented a bit just to get tight again, in fact too tight to pass at floor level so a climb up in the roof was needed in this very muddy rift. Once up and traversing it proved very difficult to stay high in the rift, one slip and you would soon know how a hedgehog on the M6 felt.
At this point
Steve did his very best to get completely wedged and almost succeeded if it was
not for Chaz’s shoulder and Pete’s help. Eventually, Steve got out looking a
bit withdrawn but he had handled very well for a wedged man! Next was four
ducks, two of the liquid mud variety. Just after the first duck I tried to blow
us all up by dropping my reserve carbide in a small stream but failed miserably
and merely gassed us all out instead. The third duck had sumped completely,
Dominic went straight through but we all decided to bail it. Meanwhile, trying
to communicate with Dominic proved to be very funny.
“What’s it like?”, shouted Chaz
“Bloody GLUB horri... GLUB...”,
Dominic replied. Chaz went for it and got through, next was Pete.
“What’s it like?”, shouted Pete.
“Just GLUB GLUB for it GLUB Pete!!”
He went for it,
looking like a giant submerged Graf Zeppelin. I was next and after a few
prayers was through but not completely as I did not take my head out of the
liquid mud. My body bobbed up like a corpse (but headless) and when Pete pulled
my head out of the liquid mud came up shouting “Flippin ‘eck, that was great -
I nearly drowned, can we do it again lads?” Steve came through no problem but
my carbide lamp had had a coronary and needed an urgent fettle. The last duck
was no problem but a strenuous 40ft free climb proved tiring. I had about one
minute to recover and then we were off again at top speed. Four more ducks
followed and a short sump free-dive. An excellent end to a memorable trip, but
there was just one more crawl we had to do. The Pub Crawl.
We were all very rotten by the end of the night. I was having problems in holding a conversation (so Fran says) but I don’t believe a word of it. I wasn’t that drunk, was I??
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