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Portland / Re: Hopeless hole - Portland
« Last post by NigelG on Today at 07:18:00 pm »
I think the pictures showing the airy nature of the roof speak for the past digging attempts not making much progress... including my own team's in the '80s.

One thing we did was start to clear the floor to solid, to make the passage nice and roomy, then on the next session we found someone had used the cave as a khasi!

Unimpressed and trying not to gag, I buried the offensiveness outside, then we dragged rocks back in to make the first yard or so uninvitingly low and jagged.

It is an interesting prospect though, and it would be good to see the continuation of the ancient stream-passage beyond the area wrecked by Steve's Endeavour Rift (a mass-movement fissure) having opened across it.
The Dales / Long Kin West rigging
« Last post by Badlad on Today at 07:15:51 pm »
LKW has been rigged since mid March to allow exploration and conservation work to take place. Some 35 trips in all.  During all that time no problems with the rigging had been encountered until this Sunday when the cave was due to be derigged.  On this occasion the two surface belays had been undone and the rope chucked down so it hung from the first rebelay.  Tampering with rigged gear is a hazard one just has to accept and it was lucky that no one was down the cave at the time as it is easy to rectify from above but more serious from below.  Following on from the tampering of ropes in Bar Pot this is just a reminder to beware.

Although the main routes have been derigged, the tensioned line and abseil rope into the Late Breakfast series is still there.  This is rigged from concrete screws at the moment but it is hoped to eventually replace them with resin anchors.  Anyone using these ropes should preform their own assessment before using.

I hope to write something up on our discoveries and related work soon.
Portland / Re: Portland Caves.
« Last post by NigelG on Today at 07:09:26 pm »
Warning above duly noted...

And I have only just spotted the thread!

The Wessex book is now on the MCRA, though not yet with its surveys and other diagrams. it's a bit awkward to read as it is one enormous 'Word' file so the pagination goes all wonky, but at least it's there.

The surveys are to follow in due course, when I'm able to copy the artwork, or have it copied.
I'll offer £100

Portland / Re: Digging in Showerbath Cave, Portland
« Last post by NigelG on Today at 07:04:44 pm »
Nice effort, Tim & Co!

The more obscure Westcliff caves like Showerbath didn't really yield to the earlier diggers (principally Dorset Caving Group, of which I was a member) in the 1970s-80s, for a mixture of reasons. Not having the luxury of things like battery drills, limited experience of dealing safely with boulders and boulder ruckles, the diggers themselves eroding away or calcifying or something, and large Undercliff slips destroying the "path".

In time most of the 1980s effort went into Ariel Cave, Sandy Hole, then the Grove Cliff Caves network.

Also of course there are few dedicated, exploration-minded cavers in the area - and they tend to prefer turning Mendip or South Wales inside out, to Portland.  Until your team came along, there was quite a long stasis because no-one was able to put together a digging team on the Island. 

I was actively digging on Portland with two others for quite a while in the mid-1980s, finding Skittle Alley, emptying Allotment Dig and starting to empty the rift within to try to find Coffin Hole's postulated continuation below it; but of our team, Martin gave up caving and Phil emigrated to New Zealand! (Was the dig that bad, Phil?)


That lovely calcite formation may have formed in a pool.
Idle Chat / Re: Friday joke - WARNING - contains swearing.
« Last post by tony from suffolk on Today at 06:50:44 pm »
The family weren't happy I'd put ginger in the curry. Apparently the kids really loved that cat.
Portland / Re: A new cave for Portland
« Last post by NigelG on Today at 06:43:16 pm »
Indeed - Tim passed me the link to this!

The rather remote location (for Portland), and the world's oceans, may well be why this is a new find. I have sent a message to Mike Read, with a copy of the link, to see if he knows anything about it, but I don't recall him ever telling me of caves like this that far South along Westcliff.

I've searched too, but fruitlessly, apart from one tiny "cavelet" really only an anastomosis channel.

Even the mass-movement rifts thin out Southwards as the cliff is much lower and less over-steepened.

There are vague traces of phreatic development right at The Bill, but nothing of enterable size; and there are or were some phreatic tubes in an old quarry NE from the Lobster Pot Café and beach-huts. These were only partially silted up, and the largest might - very "might" - have yielded to a very slim digger, but I've not found them recently and think them now buried by debris.

No water-worn features reported from any of the quarries South of Southwell village, either, though the old ones along the cliffs are too shallow to have found the deep-lying caves like Sandy Hole and Tim's discovery. Sandy Hole is near the base of the Cherty Series or even in the Basal Shell Bed, so not far above the bottom of the limestone sequence.

So if no-one else has any prior knowledge, Congratulations Tim, and although bearing in mind the tidal dangers, this one might yield a lot of passage....
Caving Chat / Re: BBC Article on Caving in Britain
« Last post by mrodoc on Today at 06:34:33 pm »
Making the point that many cavers are pensioners (eg MF, myself, the Descent editor, ORT etc etc) might help cool down the drama a bit.
Caving Chat / Re: Not everyone's a fan of caving it seems
« Last post by droid on Today at 06:23:18 pm »
Not worth getting mithered about.
There was a saying 'todays news is tomorrows chip wrapper'. In a month the news providers will have moved on and the divers and hangers on  (like Musk) will be forgotten about.

Caving will go back to being a minority and largely hidden pursuit.

As with previous times this has been done, the following journals are available. Some are fairly common but others are less common and contain valuable information about major Dales cave systems.

The difference this time is that none of these items is going individually. Here's the deal; the first person to make a reasonable offer of a donation to the NPC Library Extension Fund takes the lot. (We need the space urgently so this collection goes as one.) Any items you don't want you can dispose of however you like (give to a worthy individual or club, sell on, aswap, leave in a caving club as sacrificial items for folk to read, etc.) The collection would make an excellent basis for a club wanting to start its own library but if an individual gets in first, it's yours.

Note; we can't guarantee that pull out surveys which came with these journals will be with them.

Ideally you'll collect from the NPC hostel by arrangement with me (Greenclose, near Clapham) but we might be able to arrange caver post if this is difficult for you.

Please send me a PM with an offer of a donation. (As before, it's NOT an auction; part of this is about getting bibliographic material to an individual or club who will appreciate it. So we're not looking for a massive donation; just something reasonable to help our club library fund along.)

Here's the list - everything is in boxes, in the precise order below:



14, 15, 16, 17,

Cave Science:
9(2), 9(3), 9(4), 10(1), 10(2), 10(3), 11(1), 11(2), 12(1), 12(2), 18(3), 19(1), 19(2), 19(3), 20(1), 20(2), 20(3),

Cave & Karst Science:
21(1), 21(2), 21(3), 22(1), 22(2), 22(3),

Caves & Caving:
1(x2), 2(x2), 3(2), 4(x2), 5(x2), 6(x2), 7(x2), 8(x2), 9(x2), 10(x2), 11 (x3), 12 (x3), 13 (x3), 14(x3), 15(3), 16(x2), 17(x3),
18(x3), 19(x3), 20(x3), 21(x2), 22(x2), 23(x2), 24(x2), 25(x2), 26(x2), 27(x2), 28(x2), 29(x2), 30(x2), 31(x2), 32(x2), 33(x2), 34(x2), 35(x2), 36(x2), 37(x2), 38(x2), 39(x2), 40(x2), 41(x2), 42(x2), 43(x2), 44(x2), 45(x2), 46(x2), 47, 48(x2), 49, 50(x2), 51(x2), 52(x2), 53(x2), 54, 55, 56, 57, 58(x2), 59, 60, 61, 62, 63(x2), 64(x2), 65(x2), 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72.

Current Titles in Speleology:
International Publications 1986 (published 1987)

1(1), 1(2), 1(3), 1(4),
2(1), 2(2), 2(3),
3(1), 3(3&4),
4 (1&2), 4(4),
5(3), 5(4),
6(1), 6(2), 6(3),
7(1), 7(3), 7(4),
8(1), 8(2), 8(3), 8(4),
14(1). 14(2), 14(3), 14(4),
15(1), 15(2), 15(3), 15(4),

Pamphlet: “7th International Speleological Congress, Sheffield, England, Sept 1977”    First Circular

British Speleological Association:

No.6 (1968) (Papers Presented to the  Annual Conference)

Burnley Caving Club Review:
1972 (The Red Moss Pot journal)

Cave Diving Group Newsletter:
43 (April 1977), 45, 79, 81, 83 (x3), 84 (x2), 85 (x2), 86, 87, 88, 90, 91, 92 (x2),
93 (x2), 94, 95, 96, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 107, 112 (x2), 113, 115, 118, 119, 120, 123 (x2), 124 (x2), 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 132 (July 1999).
(Also one copy of Oliver Lloyd's Ten Year Cumulative Index of dives for the years 1969-1978.)

Cave Research Group:
bound sets;
Nos. 1-20
Nos. 21-81

Individual Newsletter Nos. 21, 22, 23 (2 x copies), 24, 26, 27, 30, 33, “58&59”, 62, “79&80”, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, “90/91”, 92, 93, 94, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103 (2 x copies), 104 (2 x copies), 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 124, 125, 126, 127, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133,

Index: Index to Newsletters 1947-1971 By S.A.Craven

Occasional publications:

Occasional Publications No.1 1956 “International Expedition to Gouffre Berger,    1956: exploits of the British members” Nick Pratchett & Bob Powell.
Occasional Publications No.2 1958 “The Geomorphology and Speleogenesis of the    Dachstein Caves” Groom & Coleman
Occasional Publications No.3 1961 “Cave Rescue” Oliver Lloyd (several copies)
Occasional Publications No.4 1961 “The Instruction & Training of Novices to    Caving” “A Syllabus” W.H.Little.
Occasional Publications No.5 1961 “The deepest caves in the world and caves which    have held the world depth record” Trevor Shaw
Occasional Publications No.6 1962 “The Lapiaz Superieure du Pla Segoune” Knight
Occasional Publications No.7 1962 “Some cave accident statistics” David E. Leitch
Occasional Publications No.8 1962 “Wire Rope Splicing” N.Pratchett

Publication N0.2 (1949) “Derbyshire Lead Mining Glossary” Nellie Kirkham (x2)
Publication No.3 (1950) “Cave Survey”
Publication No.5 (1952?) “A Key Plan of Gaping Gill”, Butcher / Gemmell
Publication No.6 ((1953?) “The Ogof Ffynnon Ddu System” Lewis Railton
Publication No.7 (1958) “The Survey of Tunnel Cave, S. Wales” Lewis Railton
Publication No.8 (1958) “A preliminary investigation into the bacterial & botanical    flora of caves in South Wales” Mason-Williams & Benson-Evans
Publication No.9 (1959) “The Survey of Pant Mawr Pot, South Wales” Alexander &    Jones
Publication No.10 (1960) “Ogof Agen Allwedd” Leitch
Publication No.11 (1962) “Some technical aids for cave exploration” members of the    South Wales Caving Club
Publication No.12 (1963) “Pen Park Hole, Bristol” Tratman
Publication No.13 (1965) “Mendip cave bibliography and survey catalogue”    Mansfield, Reynolds & Standing
Publication No.14 (1965) “Oxford University Expedition to Northern Spain 1961” by    members of the expedition

Trans. CRG Volume 1 No.1 (1948) (x3 copies)
Trans. CRG Volume 1 No.2 (1949)
Trans. CRG Volume 1 No.3 (1950) (contents; a single major article on OFD)
Trans. CRG Volume 5 No.2 (1959) (x2 copies)
Trans. CRG Volume 6 No.2 (1963)
Trans. CRG Volume 7 No.1 (1964)
Trans. CRG Volume 7 No.2 (1966) (x 2 copies)
Trans. CRG Volume 8 No.1 (1966)
Trans. CRG Volume 10 No.3 (1968)
Trans. CRG Volume 11 No.1 (1969)
Trans. CRG Volume 11 No.3 (1969)
Trans. CRG Volume 12 No.1 (1970)
Trans. CRG Volume 15 No.3 (1973)

CRG Mendip Cave Bibliography and Survey Catalogue 1901-1963 (July 1965)
   Mansfield / Reynolds / Standing

Derbyshire Caving Association Newsletter :
1(4), 1966

National Geographic Magazine:
32 page offprint from Vol. XLV No.1, January 1924, “A Visit To Carlsbad Caverns” by William T. Lee.

Northern Cave Club Journal:
Vol.2 No.1, 1968
Vol.2 No.2, 1969
No.3 1975 (Dale Barn etc)
1985? (no volume no or date given – this is the Brown Hill Pot etc journal)

Northern Pennine Club Journal:
1982 (Large Pot, etc)
Vol.1 No.1 1987 (The “Notts II Journal”) (3 copies)

Red Rose Cave and Pothole Club Journal:
No 5 1970
No.6 1972

Speleologist (magazine):
Feb / March 1966
April / May 1966
Aug / Sept 1966

University of Leeds Speleological Association Review:
3, Sept 1968
6, April 1970
7, Sept. 1970
8, 1971
9, April 1972
10, June 1972

Xingwen (China Caves Project) BCRA 1993 Waltham & Willis
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