Saturday 23 January 2016

Croesor-Rhosydd A Shockingly Wet Adventure

After our adventures in Lanzarote, it was something of a shock to the system to come back to the UK.....even more so when our first trip back was decided to be North Wales in January!

Myself, Jess, Loz, Chloe and Mark met up at the car park at 10am. As we did so another group of eight arrived and came over to ask where we were planning on going. It turned out we were both intending on the Croesor to Rhosydd through trip, but as our group were planning on spending some time taking photos we decided that it shouldn't cause any issues.

We let the other group head up the hill before us and begun our amble up ourselves.

At the entrance window the first group were just heading in, so we took our time kitting up and had a bite of our sandwiches before entering ourselves.

We caught the other party at the first abseil so I got out the camera and wasted some time taking a few shots and wound up doing the same again at the next pitch.

The last of their members were just crossing the zip line as we arrived but as this was my main objective for a photograph we wouldn't catch them again.
I begun unpacking the 15kg of camera kit I'd lugged up the hill for the shot. Jess unpacked the boat she had carried for me and the three girls begun blowing it up whilst I gave Mark a flash gun to take to the other side.

With the boat inflated Chloe begun bouncing around asking if she could be the one in the boat. She took the inflated dingy to the waters edge and Loz tried to steady things. Unfortunately this proved a little more awkward than anticipated and with a splosh Chloe went head first in to the deep, icy water. She scrambled to get back out with the cold taking her breath away and had another go. This time she managed to get in safely and I handed her a dry bag with a few flash guns in. I'd tested a similar set up around the corner and had to put some rocks in to get it to submerge.

After a couple of shots Chloe squealed from the boat saying the rocks I'd put in had pierced the bag and it was filling with water. She just made it back to shore when the flash gun which was  shrieking  in the pool of water went bang and emitted a rather unpleasant electrical burning smell.

We popped the batteries out of the wet equipment, dried it off as best we could and continued on.

Chloe's least favourite part of the trip is the traverse which she finds hugely awkward and this time was no exception. After 20 minutes of fighting with it she finally dragged herself up the slope, but with all her adrenaline gone, being soaked to the skin, and the howling draught coming through the mine she was soon turning a rather unflattering shade of blue. We begun a quick game of strip caver and each donated some dry clothing for her to get her warmed back up and continued our way over the bridges of death, abseiled down in to the waiting boat and out via Rhosydd to a damp and windy night sky.

Although Jess and I were quite looking forward to a cosy evening in the van with our gas heating and 15 tog duvet, listening to the patter of rain on the roof, for some reason Chloe wasn't as keen on setting up her tent in the pouring rain and so it was decided we'd call it a day and retreat back to the Midlands where it almost never rains and its a nice constant twenty degree's all year round ;)

A dry Chloe on the 1st abseil
2nd abseil
Zip line after the 2nd abseil
Chloe struggles on the awkward traverse

Loz on the Bridge of Death
Jess exits Rhosydd to a wet and windy night


Mark Burkey, Mark Burgess, Chloe Burney, Jess Burkey & Loz Appleby

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