Saturday, 7 June 2014

GB Cavern - Ladder Dig Extensions

After the free bar in the Hunters on Friday night in honour of Roger and Jackie's 50th wedding anniversary, all was very quiet on Mendip at 9am when we met up for breakfast at Dig-Fest headquarters at Priddy village hall. We were among the first for breakfast and polished off bacon rolls and coffee before heading to the Shepton to fill in paperwork, collect key and head off to the cave. Parking at Tynings Barrow Farm we walked down to the cave and were underground by 11am. Mel led the way and we took the standard route into the cave down to the Gorge and along to the Bridge, where we crossed and took the Loop Route, entering the main passage just upstream of the sump, which was starting to back-up a little bit following the thunderstorms of the early morning. Wal free-climbed up to the Ladder Dig and then rigged the ladder and lifeline. We were soon all up and crawling through into the Ladder Dig. The first real entertainment of the day was the wet grovel through to the boulder choke, all had fun especially Wal as he likes the wet bits so much. We then climbed up through the choke to pass through the very tight slot between boulders to enter the Great Chamber. Mike found this most entertaining and after some time was able to get his chest into the right orientation to push through. After a walk around the chamber we dropped back dow (much easier this time) and then dropped through the boulders and found our way along to Bat Passage. After following as far as sensible, we returned to derig the Ladder Dig and make our way up to the surface. We passed a couple of groups on the way out, who had made a later start by virtue of copious amounts of Butcombe consumed the night before.

The Bridge - GB Cave
Mike and Lucy on the Bridge - GB Cave

The Bridge - GB Cave
Mike and Lucy on the Bridge - GB Cave

We took a couple of photos of the Bridge before heading out to be greeted by glorious sunshine. The day was finished with a meal at the pub in Priddy and a visit to the sheep race (don't ask)....

Present: Mell Bell, Steve Wallis, Lucy Collins, Mike Bonner and Brendan Marris

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