Author Topic: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?  (Read 1515 times)

Offline thehungrytroglobite

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Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« on: May 13, 2021, 03:17:52 pm »
Experienced a significant amount of cigarette smoke trapped in a passage in Coniston mines the other day (one of the bits with less ventilation), and it was vile. I'm an ex smoker myself but still felt like I was suffocating in it. I know some cavers used to smoke in caves but didn't think many people did any more.

Interested to hear other people's opinions on smoking in caves?
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Offline Graigwen

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2021, 03:31:38 pm »
It is generally a bad idea to smoke in coal mines.

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Online Down and beyond

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2021, 03:38:07 pm »
I had  smoked in mines for many years and a few caves have to admit we always went away from the main passage and tried to be the best behave we could with it , I quit 2 weeks ago though  :bounce:

Online PeteHall

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2021, 03:43:38 pm »
I dig with a smoker and so long as he's 1m away (in the right direction), I can't smell a thing  :thumbsup:

Elsewhere, I have known a smoker need to use his diving reg to get enough oxygen into the air to get the lighter to go; possibly not the best spot to stop for a smoke...

Offline ChrisJC

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2021, 04:17:57 pm »
I don't smoke, and I quite like the smell of tobacco smoke.
So I don't mind.

As long as the smoker takes their litter out with them, I'm not really worried.

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Offline Cavematt

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2021, 04:27:53 pm »
I cave and dig with a few smokers. It doesn't really bother me too much, but then I grew up around a lot of cigarette smoke so am used to it and the smell doesn't offend me unless its blowing directly into my face. It certainly bothers me a lot less than an irritable caver with withdrawal symptoms!

Anyway, when digging, so many times a smoker has been called down the hole to light up and establish whether there is a draught.  ;D
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Offline Pegasus

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2021, 04:39:00 pm »
Nooooooooooooooooooo!

I was horrified the first time I went caving with smokers and they lit up underground, I couldn't believe it  :o  Hated they way the cave smelt of old fag smoke on the way back out.

Fortunately Badlad gave up years ago  ;D

Offline Mr Mike

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2021, 05:02:27 pm »
When I started going down mines, my friends dad would take us underground in the Peak District. He smoked a pipe and that was a nice smell. Can't remember the last time I was underground with someone who sparked up a cig.   

Offline Paul Marvin

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2021, 05:30:26 pm »
When I started going down mines, my friends dad would take us underground in the Peak District. He smoked a pipe and that was a nice smell. Can't remember the last time I was underground with someone who sparked up a cig.   

You still see plenty of butt ends , but having said that they could be well old
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Offline Cap'n Chris

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Offline mrodoc

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2021, 06:56:51 pm »
it is a right pain in the backside if you want to take photos as it creates a smog. That is unless you are trying to get a Ridley Scott effect. The only image I can remember of mine being improved was one of Ken Passant ascending to the Landing in Swildons. Not keen generally on fags in caves - or general. But then I'm a doctor!

Offline RobinGriffiths

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2021, 07:16:38 pm »
He smoked a pipe and that was a nice smell.

Yes, you can't beat a bit of rough shag.

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2021, 07:24:12 pm »
I am an ex Smoker, and have done so underground. I now regret this, and would advise strongly against it for many reasons

Offline paul

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2021, 07:26:36 pm »
Apparently smoking underground when Radon is present is a very bad idea...
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Offline Mark Wright

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2021, 08:12:54 pm »
Nooooooooooooooooooo!

I was horrified the first time I went caving with smokers and they lit up underground, I couldn't believe it  :o  Hated they way the cave smelt of old fag smoke on the way back out.

Fortunately Badlad gave up years ago  ;D

There’s every likelihood Pegasus is talking about me. Sorry.

When I joined the TSG in 1980 you could count the number of club members who didn’t smoke in a cave on one hand.

I gave up smoking real cigarettes about 5 years ago and now smoke an electronic cigarette. It goes with me on every single trip and I don’t see that changing any time soon.

I’ve never had any complaints and am regularly called upon to check the draught in our digs.

Mark

Offline Speleotron

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2021, 08:59:32 pm »
I don't mind if it's big and drafty like Rowten or GG main chamber but it's horrible anywhere else.
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Offline badger

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2021, 09:09:22 pm »
totally unacceptable in an enclosed space. I cant comprehend why anyone in todays world would find this acceptable underground or in an enclosed space, the smell to some people (like me) is quite revolting.

Offline Pegasus

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2021, 09:38:47 pm »
Nooooooooooooooooooo!

I was horrified the first time I went caving with smokers and they lit up underground, I couldn't believe it  :o  Hated they way the cave smelt of old fag smoke on the way back out.

Fortunately Badlad gave up years ago  ;D

There’s every likelihood Pegasus is talking about me. Sorry.


It was the whole blummin lot of you  :lol:  The Uni club I caved with didn't smoke underground, nor any other cavers I went with after Uni - then I met the NCC...... :o

Offline thehungrytroglobite

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2021, 12:58:11 am »
totally unacceptable in an enclosed space. I cant comprehend why anyone in todays world would find this acceptable underground or in an enclosed space, the smell to some people (like me) is quite revolting.

agree. myself and another member of my group were coughing quite severely when the smoke got super dense
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Offline David Rose

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #19 on: May 14, 2021, 07:51:48 am »
Back in the day, some of us used to smoke on long, deep trips in the Picos, partly to keep awake. I don't think it was a great idea, now.

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2021, 08:33:20 am »
totally unacceptable in an enclosed space. I cant comprehend why anyone in todays world would find this acceptable underground or in an enclosed space, the smell to some people (like me) is quite revolting.

agree. myself and another member of my group were coughing quite severely when the smoke got super dense

The smoke got super dense ? Was you in a coffin level ? I have honestly smoked in mines for years and never made dense  smoke even with everyone of the group smoking also  4/5 of us at least , are you sure their was not a fire going some where ?

Offline LJR

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2021, 08:40:38 am »
Obviously smoking in coal mines has never been a good idea and has been illegal for many years. Other mines often allowed smoking until the law banned indoor smoking in public places.
We used to drop off our geologist to look at something and return a couple of hours later to collect him, homing in to his location by the smell of smoke as we drove along with the Land Rover windows open.
I presume that as old mines and caves are "public places" it is technically illegal to smoke in them?

Offline mrodoc

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2021, 09:13:05 am »
If you want smoke so dense you can only see about a metre a trip into Dan yr Ogof on October 31st will more than satisfy your curiousity

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #23 on: May 14, 2021, 10:25:02 am »
Can't comment on caves, as I'm not a caver and haven't been in one in years.

As far as mines go, doesn't bother me.
I was a VERY heavy smoker for years; Benson & Hedges rang me up and asked me leave the amateur game behind and turn professional  :lol:
After I quit a few years ago I was the worst anti-smoker in the world; I would cross the street to avoid the smell.
Smoking underground in mines leaves no permanent damage as far as I can tell, the smell disperses quickly and as long as the rubbish is disposed of I'm ok with it. All the miners back in the day would be smokers so it's not a "new" smell  ;)

Slightly 'off topic'; we did the Pandora through trip a few years ago and I was running late from work and VERY tired so I went in from the opposite direction and waited at a convenient spot half way and got my head down for a kip under an ore hopper while I waited for the rest of the group to meet me. Slept for about 40 minutes but was woken up by the faint smell of cigarette smoke. About an hour later they turned up! The smoke had drifted outwards on the natural venting but had taken a hell of a time to get there. 
Ah, well, now, you see...erm...

Offline Paul Marvin

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #24 on: May 14, 2021, 11:32:15 am »
Can't comment on caves, as I'm not a caver and haven't been in one in years.

As far as mines go, doesn't bother me.
I was a VERY heavy smoker for years; Benson & Hedges rang me up and asked me leave the amateur game behind and turn professional  :lol:
After I quit a few years ago I was the worst anti-smoker in the world; I would cross the street to avoid the smell.
Smoking underground in mines leaves no permanent damage as far as I can tell, the smell disperses quickly and as long as the rubbish is disposed of I'm ok with it. All the miners back in the day would be smokers so it's not a "new" smell  ;)

Slightly 'off topic'; we did the Pandora through trip a few years ago and I was running late from work and VERY tired so I went in from the opposite direction and waited at a convenient spot half way and got my head down for a kip under an ore hopper while I waited for the rest of the group to meet me. Slept for about 40 minutes but was woken up by the faint smell of cigarette smoke. About an hour later they turned up! The smoke had drifted outwards on the natural venting but had taken a hell of a time to get there. 

Would never have thought you were a heavy smoker the way you walk up hills !
I dont know where I am going, but will know where I am when I get there.

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #25 on: May 14, 2021, 11:44:14 am »

Would never have thought you were a heavy smoker the way you walk up hills !


Welsh born and bred. Getting up and down hills quickly comes with the territory  ;)

Some Welshmen (Welsh-people...) are born with a strange genetic feature where they have one leg longer than the other.
They only walk around hills, not up and down them.   ;) ;) ;) ;)  :lol:

Ah, well, now, you see...erm...

Offline RobinGriffiths

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #26 on: May 14, 2021, 12:07:06 pm »

Online sinker

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #27 on: May 14, 2021, 12:17:07 pm »

That's similar to the wild haggis...

https://www.thehaggis.com/wild-haggis-all-about-haggis/


….since in order for the male of one variety to mate with a female of the other, he must turn to face in the same direction as his intended mate, causing him to lose his balance before he can mount her.

The Welsh do NOT have this problem.  ;)



Ah, well, now, you see...erm...

Offline andrewmc

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #28 on: May 14, 2021, 02:56:33 pm »
Nooooooooooooooooooo!

I was horrified the first time I went caving with smokers and they lit up underground, I couldn't believe it  :o  Hated they way the cave smelt of old fag smoke on the way back out.

Fortunately Badlad gave up years ago  ;D

I'm with Pegasus on this one - I'm not normally sensitive to smells, but cigarette smoke is something I'm very, very rarely exposed to and it's horrible when you hit it.

Offline mikem

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #29 on: May 14, 2021, 04:55:38 pm »
It was generally better than the smell of BO & stale beer in nightclubs when they banned it...

Offline Wardy

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #30 on: May 14, 2021, 09:01:32 pm »
Stopping smoking underground has had wide ranging consequences.
Helmets have to had to be re designed to fill the top with foam now there is no requirement to carry your fags there.
Carbide went out of fashion once lights were only used to see by.
Some have now had to resort to eating snacks as an excuse to take a break.
It is no longer compulsory to smoke a pipe in order to have a beard and so now younger folk have beards.
Rizla no longer sponsor caving exhibitions
How we have moved on............

Offline Cantclimbtom

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #31 on: May 15, 2021, 08:04:55 am »
Really it's up to us to vote with our feet and support UK industry.
I notice Wilsons and co (from Sharrow, established 1737) doesn't currently have clay pipes in stock https://sharrowmills.com/category/clay-pipes what a sad decline of industry. Is that caused by COVID, the general moral turpitude of our youth, or looking closer...  in fact are all of us culpable?

The BCA, NAHMO  and others need to lobby to get legislation passed that to enter a mine founded or cave discovered before WW1, smoking a clay pipe is mandatory for all members of the party over age 14 (unless medically exempt).

We are on the brink of losing our clay pipe manufacturing industry, jobs and tradition both above ground as well as below highlighted by Wardy's excellent post.

Shouldn't we fight for things that matter?
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Offline mikem

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #32 on: May 15, 2021, 08:39:22 am »
What medical exemption means under 14s should smoke...?

Offline AR

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #33 on: May 15, 2021, 08:54:44 am »
Really it's up to us to vote with our feet and support UK industry.
I notice Wilsons and co (from Sharrow, established 1737) doesn't currently have clay pipes in stock https://sharrowmills.com/category/clay-pipes what a sad decline of industry. Is that caused by COVID, the general moral turpitude of our youth, or looking closer...  in fact are all of us culpable?
lay pipe manufacturing industry, jobs and tradition both above ground as well as below highlighted by Wardy's excellent post.

Probably covid stopping the Barmote Courts being held, or re-enactors gathering to do their thing - they're the only times I've ever seen new clay pipes. PDMHS used to present new members with pipes but I think we stopped doing that ; maybe we need to resurrect that to keep the industry going?

What medical exemption means under 14s should smoke...?

Outbreaks of plague; there were cases of schools in the 17th century requiring their pupils to smoke as it was thought to dispell the miasma that caused plague!
Dirty old mines need love too....

Online sinker

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #34 on: May 15, 2021, 10:25:15 am »

It is no longer compulsory to smoke a pipe in order to have a beard and so now younger folk have beards.


 :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :clap2: :clap2: :clap2:
Ah, well, now, you see...erm...

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #35 on: May 15, 2021, 10:26:46 am »
When I was at Uni in Sheffield (though I'm from Rotherham, so didn't travel far!), our group got heavily into snuff as one way of staying up all night, and we managed to arrange a tour of Wilson's, which is only ten mins walk from my place now. They were very accommodating and showed us everything - it was truly amazing to see such ancient machinery working smoothly, and the wooden barrels of fresh product maturing everywhere. And the 'special cupboard' where they kept all the essential oils. Naturally we also left with a serious quantity of fresh supplies. They seem to have changed most of their product names since then though, due to law changes, and I don't recognise most of them now.

I do smoke but not underground - I did once, at the 50m landing of a rather special shaft waiting to prussik out as I was last, thinking it it would all go up the shaft like a chimney - it did, but only for 10m and then it stopped, and refused to budge, leaving me and another of our team to prussik up through it. There was less tobacco than usual in that one, so there was some additional grumbling from my colleague initially, but that passed quickly and I didn't hear another peep until 'rope freeee' came floating down. And it smelled nicer. A week later Big Jim got in touch to ask if I'd been down there recently, as he'd abseiled through the same cloud earlier that day, still stuck there at 40m down. Now that's quality.

Offline mikem

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #36 on: May 15, 2021, 10:35:20 am »
It was also popular back in the day as there was more waiting around on long ladder trips & everyone was cold, before the universification of fleece.

Offline Mark

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #37 on: May 15, 2021, 01:12:55 pm »
John Beck was probably the smokiest person under the earth, and we used to suffer greatly when on digging trips with him, no chance of any photo's either.

It was great when testing for draughts though.

Doug Nash on the other hand smoked a pipe and I found the smell rather pleasant, indeed the smell of Samson tobacco wafting down the heading when working in Sallet hole, heralded the arrival of Doug, with his enormous bag of liquorice allsorts, which were handed out to appease us, while he did some surveying

Offline Mark

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Re: Smoking in caves/mines - opinions?
« Reply #38 on: May 15, 2021, 07:29:41 pm »
John Beck was probably the smokiest person under the earth, and we used to suffer greatly when on digging trips with him, no chance of any photo's either.

I stand corrected, courtesy of Prof Jon Gunn, a pic of John B and Johnny Morris digging (Big dig 1974), with fag in hand and no smoke.


 

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