Sunday 25 September 2016

Rocking around in Rifleman's

After a Daren trip on the Saturday a more sedate trip was called for on the Sunday. For some reason Brendan decided a trip in to Draenen to Rifleman's chamber would fit the bill!

Kay got a chance to experience for the first time the joys of changing in to damp caving kit on a windy and chilly mountain top ;) and after just the right amount of faffing we headed down the hill along with another party who had arrived whilst we changed.

No problems were had on the way through the entrance series to Cairn Junction and we decided to take the right hand route to Tea Junction to 'connect the dots' in this area of the cave. This turned out to be a somewhat longer way around, but it was interesting to see a part of the cave we hadn't travelled before.

On we went to the stream way where we would pause every now and again for the odd photo. I had forgotten just how much stream there was to the inlet for the round trip and Brendan informed us that we were about half way once we arrived there. The water was often waist deep and mostly knee deep and made it tough going as we waded through.

At one of the wider sections of stream we paused for a photo and kay decided to go for a swim neck deep. Fortunately for me she managed to keep both units out of the water, most impressive, it is good to know she has her priorities right!

We eventually made it to the end where the stream was lost under boulders and after ascending a rather slippery mud bank made our way up the fixed ladders to the dig. As I made my way through a huge boulder moved, dropping in to the space I had just been in. Jess below hollered to the others to stand clear and a helmet size chunk of rock sailed down in to the abyss.
After a very quick look at the scaffolded shaft we regrouped for the return down the stream way.

Aside from a slip that bent Kay's wrist the return was long but uneventful.

Brendan at formations early in the trip

Jess in the Main Stream.

Kayleigh in the Main Stream

Present: Kay, Jess, Brendan & Mark

Saturday 24 September 2016

The Vice Ogof y Daren Cilau (Warning: Do NOT watch if claustrophobic)

My plan was to record a mockumentary of Ian's 70th birthday bucket list trip in Daren but after The Vice Ian had to admit that perhaps the Daren entrance crawl was not the place to be when suffering from very painful sciatica.
However I never miss the opportunity to take video of cavers in tight spaces so at least I got something from the trip.  Sorry Ian.