Sunday 16 March 2014

Large group, small spaces - Giants Hole Sunday 16th March 2014

After a successful foray into Peak Cavern on Saturday, there were eight of us raring to go caving on the Sunday, six who had caved on the Saturday plus Mel B and Andy "the Major" K.

Mel had driven up on the Saturday night to get a good night's sleep before caving, Rich was looking forward to his first night in a caving bunkhouse, and Chloe (with previous experience) had brought ear plugs. Mark and I decided to slum it in our van, complete with full sized bed, duvet, pillows, heater and flat screen T.V. 

As we rolled up to the TSG hut after a measly 9 hours sleep, we were met by some very bleary-eyed cavers - and a bright-eyed Brendan, who apparently had slept very well whilst he serenaded the rest of them.

Brendan however soon redeemed himself by whipping out his delicious baps again, and well fortified we set off for Giants Hole, joined by the Major and Loz who just made it by the skin of her teeth.

The Giants' car park was already full but as the other groups were only planning to wander as far as Garland's Pot, we were undaunted.
The ladder pitch was smoothly descended by everyone in the group, and the crab walk posed no major difficulties to anyone. A little more fun was to be had on the slippery climb up out of the Eating House! 

Mark wanted to have a quick look at the connection through to Oxlow via the Chamber of Horrors, and picked Loz out as a suitable guinea pig/sewer rat to send ahead of him down the tight muddy flat out crawl, to see just how tight, muddy and flat out it was! Unfortunately he sent her down an impossibly tight wrong passage, so to make a mends he then led her the right way, only turning back at the suicidal ducks. Not knowing any better, Mel B and Rich scurried down the crawl after them, and after some time the four of them emerged panting and muddy - but warmer than the rest of us who had sat waiting. 

The traverses provided the rest of the entertainment for the trip, with everyone following very carefully in each others footsteps and appreciating the view downwards as they wriggled through the calcite boss headfirst. Safely back down to Garland's Pot, again everyone climbed swiftly and efficiently up the ladder. After packing up the kit we headed on out, finding the others posting themselves through the squeezy oxbow near the entrance - so of course we had to have a go too.

A good trip was had by all, with the Major particularly enjoying the tight squeezes along the Crab Walk, Mel overcoming her worst fears on the traverses, Rich taking everything in his stride and Loz surpassing herself by not stopping for breath once on the whole trip! Chloe redeemed herself from squeaking at the calcite boss by getting through the oxbow on her back - though as she was pushed in and pulled out, does it really count???

Present: Brendan M., Mark B., Jess B., Chloe B., Mel B., Rich G., Andy K., Loz A.

Mel about to descend the ladder pitch

Loz on her way to find Chamber of Horrors

Mark attempting to crack a rib in the squeezy oxbow

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