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Equipment / Re: Long SDS Quick drill bit
« Last post by Rob on Today at 08:27:27 pm »
I suspect you're right, although in my experience they'd handle a 250mm 8mm hole fine, and spare batteries are so light to carry.

I've seen inklings online of SDS Quick -> SDS adaptors, but can't find one available anymore. Is anyone metal savy able to machine one up? I imagine there might be a (small) market for them....
Obituaries - cavers remembered / Re: Tony Oldham RIP
« Last post by ZombieCake on Today at 08:23:43 pm »
That's a real shame. Must have been just year or so ago I gave him some material for one of his books. RIP.
The Dales / Re: Juniper Gulf sump
« Last post by CPC John on Today at 08:10:04 pm »
These drainage systems that go through current day ‘water sheds’ (and there are a number in the Dales) must surely be due to basement topography?
The sooner we map the base limestone palaeo land surface the sooner we’ll find the master caves running along pre Carboniferous valleys.....

Let me just throw one point back into the mix: diversity. Let's face it: the overwhelming majority of cavers are white, and most of them (not all - most) are male.

Are we worried about this? Should we be? And if we are, should we be trying to change things?

Caving is an activity which at first sight has little to recommend it.
Not many people take it up, obviously fewer do it more than once and even fewer carry on year after year.  There will be many reasons for this.
Is it sensible to assume that people of different ethnicity, gender, upbringing and so on all attach the same importance to all these reasons?
In an ideal world everyone would have the same opportunities to become (or not) a caver.
But just playing the numbers game (and I’m afraid that’s what often follows a mention of “diversity”) ignores the valid reasons for people of different backgrounds wanting to do different things and does not prove that the opportunities are not there.
It's probably one of those tragic ironies that, unlike most sports, you _have_ to join a caving club to cave. I know that's not actually true, yet every person who comes onto this forum gets told to join a club...

And yet in most sports where do young people start? Clubs, whether it be the local football club or whatever. And what do caving clubs do for young people? Very little... With a few exceptions, of course, but most caving clubs in the country don't want anything to do with young people.

If caving really wants more kids involved, then it needs people willing to a) jump through the child protection hoops (which is a lot easier if you have NGB support) and b) willing to take kids caving on a regular basis. Such people do exist, and are already taking people caving, and should be applauded, but I don't see queues forming to lead kids' trips... Not that I'm any better of course (although a very brief failed career in teaching suggests I'm not the person to make kids behave!).

Student clubs are absolutely the wrong answer to getting U18s caving (I actually wrote drinking instead of caving initially - Freudian slip!) for a variety of reasons.

(and since there is another reply, here are some of those reasons...)

Uni clubs often have enough trouble getting leaders to run their own trips, let alone others.
Taking kids caving requires adopting a very serious duty of care, leading trips appropriately and having sufficient experience and management skills to never end up in trouble. Essentially the same sort of management as commercial caving.
Student caving is all about personal growth and trying new things; 'normal' caving where you try things that are sometimes outside your comfort zone and previous skills. Its a group of peer or near-peers exploring the world of caving, not a leader and those the leader is caring for.
Student clubs are a place for people who have just become adults to express themselves - they've only just broken free of being U18, and now they have to start looking after them?
Also the drinking.
Uni clubs had enough problems with insurance for experienced non-students forcing many to stop supporting them (which coincided with the start of decline in number of clubs), I don't think the student unions will allow younger non-students (for a variety of other reasons too).

This is true, but some Universities (especially Russell group ones) are under pressure to recruit from a wider range of schools and already run outreach programmes.  So a link-up with local sixth-forms could be spun as an effort of this kind and get the authorities actively supporting it, rather than trying to block it.

(I know, and pigs might fly too...)
Idle Chat / Re: Cryptic caves
« Last post by HardenClimber3 on Today at 07:21:56 pm »
If it is short, the sun doesn't shine there.
Obituaries - cavers remembered / Re: Tony Oldham RIP
« Last post by mikem on Today at 07:03:34 pm »
Tony once told me that "groove where the water runs" was the best local translation
Yes, the more correct form is rhych y dwr - water furrow - but the other suits!
Obituaries - cavers remembered / Re: Tony Oldham RIP
« Last post by mudman on Today at 06:25:44 pm »
Very sad news. When I started caving, collecting his local guides was one of the things that enabled my mate and I to discover and explore the local caves. I often enjoyed his little interjections here and I always wondered about the truth of his fabled gate collection.
Obituaries - cavers remembered / Re: Tony Oldham RIP
« Last post by Carbide1 on Today at 06:03:34 pm »
Tony once told me that "groove where the water runs" was the best local translation
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