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Heading caving

FermanaghBell

New member
Im planning on visiting the area for a bit of caving,pitched caves if possible,if Any man or woman free on 21st/22nd April,with local knowledge to join myself id be grateful.

Also will need a hut to stay in.

Or what's the best recommend caves about or info including is permits required, pin point on map an so on.

Thanks in advance

Ray
 

PeteHall

Moderator
Hi Ray,

Due to the local geology in Mendip, most caves do not have many pitches, so personally I'd drop this criteria if you want to experience what the area's really like.

My personal recommendation for a weekend in Mendip would be to stay at the Wessex Cave Club. You can walk from here to Swildon's Hole, which is one of the best sporting caves in the country; one 20 foot ladder (borrowed from the Wessex) will give you options on some fantastic trips. You can also walk from here to Eastwater, which is another Mendip classic and is a must do, for anyone who hasn't experienced the 45 degree dip limestone; an evening trip to the 13 pots would be a great introduction to the cave, involving 40 feet of ladder from memory.

My final recommendation for the weekend would be GB cave which is a short drive from the Wessex. A trip to Great Chamber (involving one short ladder climb) and exit via the Devil's Elbow is a brilliant and varied trip.

If you are set on doing pitches, you could go to Thrupe Lane, Hunters Hole, or Rhino Rift, but you're better saving the SRT for other regions.
 

andrewmcleod

Well-known member
The Twin Verticals in Eastwater is an 'entertaining' little Mendips excursion with two short SRT pitches (and is a way of doing the 13 Pots), as long as you don't mind rigging with the entertaining array of old crap (spits, naturals, random ancient metalwork).

The anchors for the 'normal' route down the 35 foot pitch (laddered, not SRT) are also crappy through-bolts (one looking decidedly sketchy) which need backing up to dubious boulders and/or a distant (but massive) pillar, which is a shame as you could get a lovely clean hang down that pitch...

(frankly the current state of fixed aids in that cave is an embarrassment...)
 

PeteHall

Moderator
andrewmc said:
(frankly the current state of fixed aids in that cave is an embarrassment...)

Pretty sure it is next on the list to get properly bolted. The CSCC  anchor installer has been to have a look at what can be done, but from memory, he is awaiting more anchors.
 
From the CSCC Minutes of 19 November 2021 Andrew Atkinson reported as follows:

Eastwater, the 35? pitch (commonly called Dolphin Pitch) has needed rebolting for many years. I am proposing that we replace them as soon as I get some more anchors

No mention of Twin Verticals route.
 

Shapatti

New member
JohnMCooper said:
From the CSCC Minutes of 19 November 2021 Andrew Atkinson reported as follows:

Eastwater, the 35? pitch (commonly called Dolphin Pitch) has needed rebolting for many years. I am proposing that we replace them as soon as I get some more anchors

No mention of Twin Verticals route.
As the person put the paperwork in requesting that Dolphin Pitch be re-bolted, and who then visited it with Andrew to see what could be done, this is all that was requested and agreed by the meeting.
I do believe Andrew has also had a look at the Twin Verticals to see what could possibly be done with them and the current bolts in place ruin the good placements for Eco-Hangers, so unless these can be removed cleanly then any replacement anchors will need some very careful work doing to ensure the hang on the pitches work well.
It is my understanding though that the current through bolts on the Twin Verticals are a lot newer than most of the other bolts in the cave.
 

FermanaghBell

New member
Hi Ray,

Due to the local geology in Mendip, most caves do not have many pitches, so personally I'd drop this criteria if you want to experience what the area's really like.

My personal recommendation for a weekend in Mendip would be to stay at the Wessex Cave Club. You can walk from here to Swildon's Hole, which is one of the best sporting caves in the country; one 20 foot ladder (borrowed from the Wessex) will give you options on some fantastic trips. You can also walk from here to Eastwater, which is another Mendip classic and is a must do, for anyone who hasn't experienced the 45 degree dip limestone; an evening trip to the 13 pots would be a great introduction to the cave, involving 40 feet of ladder from memory.

My final recommendation for the weekend would be GB cave which is a short drive from the Wessex. A trip to Great Chamber (involving one short ladder climb) and exit via the Devil's Elbow is a brilliant and varied trip.

If you are set on doing pitches, you could go to Thrupe Lane, Hunters Hole, or Rhino Rift, but you're better saving the SRT for other regions.
Thanks for your information,i will i think take on board this will also keep my air luggage fare down at the airport.
 

Ian Ball

Well-known member
Flying with caving kit, not done it myself did hear the rumour of people drying kit in the airport to try and get back under the baggage limit on the way home ;-)
 

alastairgott

Well-known member
I had literally no idea how close Bristol Airport was till I drove past it on Thursday night, it must be the closest airport to a caving region!

It was a very chilled but also quite silly Easter weekend, thank you Mendip for not disappointing.
 
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