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dow cave; complete novice.

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rob_

Guest
hello, my names rob, my friend and i are keen walkers and a few months ago we stumbled upon the entrance to dow cave, we ventured in as far as our walking gear would let us (which wasn't far) and then came back and agreed we'd have to return with some more appropriate gear, well Lidl are doing a nice range of angling gear at the moment,in amongst which are some waiders for a fiver! so we're a tenner poorer but looking forward to this weekend, so what do we need to know? how is it best to go about it, i have no desire to get hideously lost or to do anything stupid but we do want a bit of an adventure.
how far can you go before you have to start properly "caving" (neither of us are put off by a bit of scrambling).
from the maps i've seen the dow cave-Providence Pot route is a "T" rotated 90 deg left, i have no intention of attempting the Providence Pot section but can you carry straight on from dow cave past hobsons choice and emerge at the other end?

thanks in advance.

Rob

PS. what's a boulder choke?
 
B

BCMCXIV

Guest
Hi Rob,

Dow Cave's not a bad place to start for a first trip. Nice easy walking for most of it. As long as you don't get carried away then it should be fine. If you find you enjoy it then I'd highly recommend that you get in touch with a nearby caving club and learn the ropes with some proper supervision and access to some proper equipment: there aren't many caves as accessible as Dow.

Important things to bear in mind are:

1. Tell someone where you are going and get them to ring for the CRO (Cave Rescue Organisation) if you aren't accounted for by a certain set time. To get in touch with CRO you ring 999 and ask for Grassington police station.

2. Make sure that you have a decent source of light each, and a back up between you incase one of them fails.

3. Some sort of head protection is extremely advisable. You can often hire helmets and lights for the day from caving gear shops. I think there is a gear shop in Kettlewell, but not sure whether it will let you hire lights for the day (??).

4. Don't push yourself too far first time out (from your post it seems like you realise this anyway). Stick to the walking passage and maybe a little crawling, and watch out for loose boulders and slipping hazards.


A boulder choke is where a pile of boulders has accumulated in a way that blocks the passage. They are often loose and dangerous, so best avoided. Think Kerplunk, only worse! I've not been past Hobson's Choice, so am not sure what that area is like (the first word that pops into my head is "loose" [i.e. dangerous] , but that may be my bad memory). It doesn't lead to another entrance though, so you'll have no choice but to retrace your steps if you do decide to venture into this area.

Anyway, I hope you really enjoy it, and hopefully it will encourage you to cross over to the 'dark side' on a more permanent basis!  ;)

Cheers,

James.
 

cap n chris

Well-known member
Yep, two candles; one to cave by and one as a backup in case the first one gets dropped, burns out or gets eaten. The other one can be neatly stashed behind your ear or up your sleeve. The box of matches ought to be kept somewhere safe and dry (perhaps tucked under your cap or in a sock).
 

kay

Well-known member
Remember the biggest threat in Yorkshire caves is flooding - choose a day when you haven't had lots of rain in the previous week, and when there are no thunderstorms forecast.

Come back and let us know how you got on - if you enjoyed it, we can give further advice on other good caves to start with (either as caving trips on their own or to combine with a walk) and caving clubs in the area.
 

ian.p

Active member
if the person your intending on using as youre callout is not a caver it may be worth giving them a copy of the callout procedures what you can find hear..... http://ukcaving.com/board/index.php/topic,3572.msg48770.html#msg48770
 

Hammy

Member
Hi Rob

James provides some excellent advice and I hope you have a great time! There has been some talk of the entrance to Dow Cave being unstable so have a close look, talk quietly and be prepared to run for it! - (joking aside I havn't been there recently so can't really comment.)

Stuff the candles!! (or should that be snuff....  ;))

Don't be surprised if you get funny looks regarding the Lidl waders!! Please submit a 'trip report' on here as we'd love to know how you get on!

Look out for the forthcoming free 'Try Caving' events organised by the British Caving Association http://www.trycaving.co.uk/ if you would like to find out more about the 'pastime'. There is one taking place in the Dales on Saturday 28th April and I believe more are planned for May Bank Holiday weekend (26th, 27th, 28th May) - feel free to pm me if you want further details as the website isn't up to date!
 
D

digscaves

Guest
Hi Rob,
If you are having troble getting hold of any equipment (helmets/lights) consider one of the local Dales based clubs.
They are always looking for new recruits.

Have a look at www.white-rose.org.uk they have people caving in Wharfedale most weekends.

Have a good trip.
 
R

rob_

Guest
cap 'n chris said:
And there was me, convinced this thread is/was a wind up. I still think it is.
i assure you it's not, but i'm interested to know why you think it is?
 

cap n chris

Well-known member
Purchasing waders in Lidl as an entree to caving was the giveaway for me.

If you want to go caving why not hire a helmet/light/oversuit and/or go with a caving club/outdoor centre?

Would you buy a scarf from Lidl if you wanted to go abseiling? 
 

menacer

Active member
cap 'n chris said:
Would you buy a scarf from Lidl if you wanted to go abseiling? 

Lidls were doing a pack of 10 bungee cords last week for £2.99 if anyone wants to have a go at bungee jumping. :eek:
 
W

wormster

Guest
rob_ said:
cap 'n chris said:
And there was me, convinced this thread is/was a wind up. I still think it is.
i assure you it's not, but i'm interested to know why you think it is?

Rob,

Welcome to the forum,

Don't be put off by All the windup merchants on here, there's just one or two lurking in the woodwork.

Go out and play safe then come and write a trip report.
 

mrodoc

Well-known member
I didn't think Rob's query was a wind up either so I am glad he got some good advice.  Don't knock Lidl's - I have acquired some very good kit from there for diving etc. etc.  Also when starting caving I can recall using all sorts of begged and borrowed caving wear including ex WD exposure suits (NOT goon suits) which leaked like sieves. I remember being in Stoke with my Dad and remarking that I could hear an inlet stream - turned out to be the water emptying out of his immersion suit when he stood up!

Dow is quite a good start. If nobody has mentioned it get some guidebooks. The most dangerous thing to do is go into something with a shaft you are unaware of.
 

cap n chris

Well-known member
Sorry, Rob, but before you joined in with your thread there was a recent one along the lines of "I'm keen to become a cave diver and have recently bought some hose pipe; do you think this will work and has anyone got any advice?" etc.. Your opening thread seemed to me to be in very much a similar vein.

It seems weird that I'm accused (yet again) of being a wind-up merchant when all I'm doing is responding to something which I consider to be a wind up. It's amazing. Same person, same accusations.
 
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