Owert Kilns Dig

On 21st. May, Lionel & I went to the farm intending to bale out the new sump in Javelin Pot. We first went to the Owert Kiln Dig to get a bucket, but when we got there, the dig site had changed. So we changed our minds & started digging in the knee-deep water.

After taking out 10 buckets fullLi took over & changed the plan of attack, he started driving the big bar down by the limestone face. The opposite face was sandstone & clay (highly mobile). Within minutes, Gurgle-gurgle & the water shot away. He followed the face down & 5 buckets later found the limestone was undercutting & the stream was running away quite nicely. It was getting late & it was obviously going to be a long job, so we left.

As Whit week was coming up nothing happened until Whit Monday evening when Li rang to say his thoughts of the dig & the open hole had niggled him all week. So how about an evening trip on Tuesday. As I had also had a nagging urge to see where the water was going, I jumped at the chance.

We drove up to Bull Pot, changed & were soon at the shakehole, to find the highly mobile sandstone & clay had blocked the hole & it was once more ponded-up.

It took about 10 bucketfuls to get it running again & it exposed a 3foot square sandstone slab stuck end-on in the fill. I loosened it with the bar, but no luck shifting it. The Red Mist took over & next thing, Liís wrestling with the block, a big heave & out it came. In the next moment the floor of the dig dropped a foot! This exposed an open black hole!. However this was quickly closed by a run-in of clean washed gravel. As it was now getting dark & we were getting aware of the highly mobile fill, we decided to seek Andyís scaffolding skills & hope for a happy conclusion.

Jim Newton

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