Author Topic: Langcliffe Pot  (Read 3100 times)

Offline Andrew Wilson

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #25 on: July 11, 2017, 06:44:26 pm »
This cave had been on my to-do list for quite some time. . .

Langcliffe had been on my to do list since I read Northern Caves (1975) for the first time. Statements like "A trip into the far reaches is probably the most serious undertaking in British caving." although probably now out of date, tend to grab my interest.
Reading your write up here and others found online (Simon Beck, Sam Allshorn, Alex Ritchie. .) inspire the confidence to try these places. I see you have written quite a few concise reports of places I still need to visit, so cheers!

Andy

Offline Simon Wilson

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1319
    • IC Resin Anchor
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #26 on: July 11, 2017, 06:46:59 pm »
... Had he read what was written ...
 

What I wrote:
Since my Descent article in 2015 in which I reported that we could not get through, the blockages have been removed and there have been quite a few trips. In particular there were a series of diving trips in summer 2016. I guess that the "rumours of capping" might refer to the clearance of the blockage in 2016.
The clearance of the blockage has to be applauded. The route through the boulders was opened up by digging and was bigger in the past. Because it is only there because it has been dug open it is perfectly ethical to make it bigger than it is at present. Anybody who wants to go and enlarge it would be doing the caving community a favour. If it is done it should be publicised.

I did not advocate capping. I maintain that 'in my opinion' (obviously) there is no ethical reason why an entirely artificial and unstable route through a boulder choke should not be enlarged/improved.

I'll give Simon Beck the benefit of the doubt and say that perhaps I did not explain what I meant well enough. I will explain more fully.

In 2015 Oddmire Pot entrance was blocked by fallen boulders. As well as being an important entrance that was blocked I also knew that it had old rusty Spits that were in a dangerous state. I gained permission, dug out the entrance and installed resin anchors within the CNCC anchor scheme. I made a lid for the entrance which supported covering rocks and I asked people to replace them in order to keep the farmer happy. People left it uncovered - but hey.

Bob Riley and I then enjoyed several more trips and we had the intention of installing resin anchors on Nemesis Pitch. When we got to the Boireau Falls Chamber boulder choke we could not get through. It was around forty years since we had been there before and it was nothing like either of us could remember it. We both agreed that it appeared to require some digging to get through but we weren't sure about where the route through was.

What we did was done at our expense and for the benefit of all cavers. I decided to publish what we had done and thought that somebody with more recent knowledge might assist in the project.

I now know that in the following months there was a flurry of activity which was not made public (to the best of my knowledge). Only in the last few days have I found out that in 2016 digging was carried out which reopened the boulder choke. This was the clearance of the blockage that had stopped us and that blockage had occurred by movement of the unstable boulder choke sometime between the last publicly recorded visit in 2008 (https://ulsa.org.uk/rants/rant.php?rant_id=605) and our visit in 2015.

It was the clearance of this blockage that I applauded.

I definitely do not applaud that whoever cleared the blockage did so without reporting it publicly.

Caving is a collaborative effort in which we progress by people making steps forwards and sharing information. Sharing such as Andrew Wilson and Rob Watson (thanks again). Obviously this is only my opinion and some people choose not to share information. You are only able to go down Langcliffe Pot because people have explored it and published what they have done over a period of eighty two years. You are only able to go beyond Boireau Falls Chamber because a route through the boulders was created by digging in 1970 then the route made bigger and easier before becoming more difficult again and the knowledge of it freely given for the benefit of others. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Langcliffe_Pot

Some friendly communication with your fellow cavers might be better than getting your knickers in a twist about imaginary capping.


Offline Andrew Wilson

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 16
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #27 on: July 11, 2017, 07:12:04 pm »
Let's agree to cross that bridge when we get to it. Such discussions could be had on any number of tight caves in the dales.


I agree with this sentiment. I personally choose trips because they are hard, this might wear off one day but no sign yet! I'd rather that the horrible tight caves stayed that way for as long as possible. I must confess to doing Strans Gill after it was capped and will now be doing Swan Dike post-cap, such is life, still great trips.
I do more climbing than caving, if you went around chipping holds on routes to make the hard climbs easier so you could do them it would be sacrilege and massively frowned upon, and frankly pointless.
I know caving is different and the ethics are not the same, but they exist. My view for what its worth is that there is a difference between further digging and capping. Digging could be anything from brushing aside some pebbles in a tight bedding plane, to using a bar to lift boulders out of a choke to enlarge it. It is still digging and really only entails moving loose material out of the way so not a problem.

Capping or chiseling solid rock on an established route to make it easier is really not in the spirit of things in my book. Fine for pushing new stuff mind you. Hats off to those pushing the ends right now.

Andy

Offline Fulk

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 3171
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #28 on: July 11, 2017, 11:04:59 pm »
Quote
I must confess to doing Strans Gill after it was capped

I did some of the early trips down Strans Gill, and would like to know where it has been capped; any information?

Offline Alex

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 3448
  • BRCC, UWFRA.
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #29 on: July 11, 2017, 11:24:14 pm »
Quote
I definitely do not applaud that whoever cleared the blockage did so without reporting it publicly.


But I did report it Simon Wilson, see my response here:

http://ukcaving.com/board/index.php?topic=19841.0

I said:

Quote
It was indeed impassible. There were several loose rocks in the way of the squeeze you normally use to get down to the stream, but with a bit of effort I can now report it is once again passable but still blooming awkward, the squeeze is now exactly as it was when I visited in 2013.


I even bloody filmed it, posted it on you-tube, now open, how much more public do you want?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsKOY9_xqNc&t=319s
Anything I say is represents my own opinion and not that of a any club/organisation that I am a member of (unless its good of course)

Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #30 on: July 11, 2017, 11:34:36 pm »
Well said Alex.

Sent from my SM-J320FN using Tapatalk


Offline Ian Ball

  • regular
  • *
  • Posts: 62
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #31 on: July 12, 2017, 07:04:38 am »
Alex, there's public and then there's the select few who represent the public   ;)

Shifting 30 kilo blocks about at the bottom of a choke,, think I'll stick to Jingling Pot.


Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #32 on: July 12, 2017, 08:14:29 am »
I now know that in the following months there was a flurry of activity which was not made public (to the best of my knowledge). Only in the last few days have I found out that in 2016 digging was carried out which reopened the boulder choke. This was the clearance of the blockage that had stopped us and that blockage had occurred by movement of the unstable boulder choke sometime between the last publicly recorded visit in 2008 (https://ulsa.org.uk/rants/rant.php?rant_id=605) and our visit in 2015.

The blockage hadn't occurred due to movement in the choke. It was due to flood debris, mainly rocks/cobbles building up where the route through the choke reaches the streambed. We removed similar items prior to and during our 2008 visit and the same in 2010 with Ian C. The route through the choke hasn't shifted at all, it felt the same for me in 2016 as it had done in 2008. Aside from some settling I doubt the route has changed at all since it was first established in the 70s(72?).

This idea Simon that a new route is constantly been forged due to structural movements in the boulder choke, which backs up your suggestion about enlargement, is a complete falsehood. The same applies to the Nemesis Choke, which was blocked (in places) with cobbles and had to be dug out last July. Both these features are subjected to severe flooding. The tallest chamber ceilings in the Nemesis Choke were caked in flood foam during that same July visit.       
« Last Edit: July 12, 2017, 08:32:42 am by Simon Beck »

Offline Simon Wilson

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1319
    • IC Resin Anchor
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #33 on: July 12, 2017, 09:37:32 am »
Alex,
I was also careful to say that it wasn't reported publicly 'to the best of my knowledge'. The problem with posting something on this forum is that it appears for a few hours and then gets buried and lost. The posting you made was in a thread about The Roads. I used the search function and didn't find that particular needle in the haystack.

Regarding the ethics of improving the route through the boulder choke. It is not similar to chipping holds on a climb or removing bedrock from a tight squeeze in an existing known cave such as Strans Gill. It should be compared to shoring in a dig or supporting the roof in a mine.

It is worth considering the history of the route through the boulders. You may view it as a sporting challenge but it is entirely man-made. In 1970 there was no way through and it was two years later that a way through the boulders was mined. There have been at least two different routes over the decades. The only route that I know to be open at present has closed up and is much smaller than it used to be; it is unstable, dangerous and gets blocked repeatedly.

The difficulties of Langcliffe Pot are great enough and always will be without deliberately increasing them. I would like to see this particular boulder choke made easier and safer and get more people interested in pushing the limits in Langcliffe Pot. The objections to the improvement of the route through the boulder choke are entirely for selfish reasons.

If someone wants to artificially create caving challenges they don't need to go down Langcliffe Pot to do it, they can go to Hidden Earth and have a go at speleo-sports or they can climb through bar stools in a pub without endangering other people.

Marysboy - only my opinion and you are quite free to disagree (obviously).

« Last Edit: July 12, 2017, 09:46:23 am by Simon Wilson »

Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #34 on: July 12, 2017, 10:02:45 am »
Regardless of your opinion Simon Wilson, which is all it ever will be, your the last caver on earth that will be making any actual decisions about what happens down Langcliffe.

Sent from my SM-J320FN using Tapatalk


Offline Alex

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 3448
  • BRCC, UWFRA.
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #35 on: July 12, 2017, 12:43:53 pm »
When I remembered I had posted something back in 2016. I found it quite easily after searching for "Langcliffe". I find the forum search mechanism works quite well. But yes maybe as a separate thread would make it more visible, but at the time I likely did not think it was worth creating an entire new thread just because we moved a few rocks in a cave rarely visited due to it's somewhat warranted fearsome reputation. Nor did I think I would be called out for not making it public enough.
Anything I say is represents my own opinion and not that of a any club/organisation that I am a member of (unless its good of course)

Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #36 on: July 12, 2017, 01:11:02 pm »
You shoudn't have to justify it Alex. It's your choice how you go about sharing information.

Offline NigR

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1099
  • Grwp Ogofeydd Garimpeiros SWCC
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #37 on: July 13, 2017, 03:14:09 am »
Regardless of your opinion Simon Wilson, which is all it ever will be, your the last caver on earth that will be making any actual decisions about what happens down Langcliffe.


Bold words, Simon Beck. Let's be honest though, as always it will be down to the cavers who are there at the time (be it Simon Wilson or anyone else) to decide what will happen in Langcliffe, won't it? If their decision does not meet with your approval then that is unfortunate (for you) but (in practical terms) you will be totally impotent to do anything about it, won't you?

Interesting to see the various discussions concerning the possible changes in the cave over the years. If (as you appear to strongly maintain) there have been very few major alterations, then all I can say is that you young tigers can't be all that good these days. Bearing in mind that I am neither particularly small nor particularly intrepid in tight places, it is surprising to hear of the current difficulties you are encountering as there was absolutely nothing along those lines back in the late '70s when I visited the cave. Maybe a bit awkward in places (especially when it came to getting the diving gear through) but that was about it, nothing at all like the epic Alex describes. So, (assuming you are maybe just a little bit better than I am giving you credit for) you might like to consider whether Simon Wilson (however unpalatable you may find it) is possibly correct in his assessment?

Anyway, good to see that the cave is being visited on a more regular basis and that younger cavers are once again following in the footsteps of earlier explorers. Having said that, I must admit there seem to be far too many pure tourist trips for my liking. Is anyone actually doing anything worthwhile down there?
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 03:44:07 am by NigR »

Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #38 on: July 13, 2017, 08:41:00 am »
No approval necessary from me at all.

I suspect this whole charade (S Wilson's recent involvement with oddmire/langcliffe) has more to do with Simon's beliefs on access and his attempts to make a point on the matter, than it does with future exploration at the site. Hence my comment and conclusion.

Sent from my SM-J320FN using Tapatalk


Offline MJenkinson

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 315
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #39 on: July 13, 2017, 09:58:42 am »
Well if nothing else this thread has piqued my interest in the place. Bit too much dick swinging going on  in this thread but doesn't bother me as a) I will only ever do a tourist trip (it's too big and hard for a sport caver like me), and b) My belly is too big and my balls too small for those boulder choke squeezes.

Offline Simon Wilson

  • forum hero
  • *****
  • Posts: 1319
    • IC Resin Anchor
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #40 on: July 13, 2017, 10:34:24 am »
There are really good shorter trips to do within this interesting system.

It can be slightly confusing where the various entrance routes converge near Hammerdale Dub. In all three routes, route finding is easier going downstream. Take note of the appearance of the passage when you come to a confluence.

You could explore each route downstream to Hammerdale Dub separately and they each make good trips that can be done in a couple of hours maybe on a nice summer evening midweek. Continuing on to Boireau Falls Chamber would only add about an hour to the trip.

If you wanted to do a round trip without having first explored the exit, the way out of Langcliffe Pot via Craven Crawl would be the easiest to find. You would have to rig the entrance pitch first and then go in Oddmire.

Another good circuit to do is in Oddmire then down The Roads and back out of Oddmire. But the way into Strid Passage would not be very easy to find if you didn't know it.

Both Strid Passage and Craven Crawl are wet and low in places but strolling down Langstrothdale Chase is a delight.

Enjoy.

Survey.
http://cavemaps.org/surveys/ulsa/full/ULSA%20R5%20Lancliffe%20Pot.png
Slaughter Aven is now Oddmire Pot.

Offline C.Raven

  • regular
  • *
  • Posts: 38
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #41 on: July 13, 2017, 11:30:33 am »
Has upstream from Odmire Pot been pushed any further in the ULSA exploration Journal it just says it goes from one squeeze to another.

Offline MJenkinson

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 315
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #42 on: July 13, 2017, 11:37:01 am »
Thanks Simon

Offline Simon Beck

  • obsessive maniac
  • ***
  • Posts: 348
    • Legends Session
Re: Langcliffe Pot
« Reply #43 on: July 13, 2017, 11:38:00 am »
Has upstream from Odmire Pot been pushed any further in the ULSA exploration Journal it just says it goes from one squeeze to another.
Was looked at last year, low and wet but would benefit another visit, water levels were well up at the time.

Sent from my SM-J320FN using Tapatalk