Author Topic: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot  (Read 18311 times)

Offline bograt

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #25 on: November 04, 2012, 11:48:43 pm »
Well that was hard work - not because of the CO2 I just found going up in such a tight space a bit tricky. Quick question...where an earth are the P Bolts for the top of Elizabeth Shaft?  :unsure:

The Narrow's have always been interesting, the clue is in the name. ;D ;D
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Offline global_s

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #26 on: November 04, 2012, 11:56:26 pm »
I've never been down a cave with high C02 and I didn't have a meter, so it's hard to give a useful report I'm afraid. That said we kept it mind, but it's hard to know at what point it was real and what point imagination. Is the Gulley Pitch the below the flats? If so we both noticed it being slightly harder coming up for a short easy pitch.

Descending from through the shaft, we hit the bottom, traversed left from the P Bolt and straight behind us was the unbolted pitch, although we saw lots of old spit placements, so should we have come of the rope and wondered round a bit more. Both had good lighting, but neither of us obviously went far enough left to see the pitch we wanted.

Worth noting for anybody doing it from an older rigging guide that rope lengths given are incorrect. It says you need 28m and a 35m. We packed a 60m and didn't quite get us down. Looking at the newer one I downloaded from the DCA it says you need a 70m, which would have worked.

Bit of a derail, but does anyone mind giving me a bit more info on the history and formation of this cave. As I descended I saw scalloping pointing downwards....Does this mean that there was a vertical joint that was expanded? The guide says it was dug out. Would this have meant it was just a small hole, filled with mud, but subsequent water has washed the walls clean?

Offline global_s

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #27 on: November 04, 2012, 11:58:27 pm »
Well that was hard work - not because of the CO2 I just found going up in such a tight space a bit tricky. Quick question...where an earth are the P Bolts for the top of Elizabeth Shaft?  :unsure:

The Narrow's have always been interesting, the clue is in the name. ;D ;D

Yeah, thanks for that. :D

Ah this is why I'm loving caving so much at the moment, each trip is a new adventure and feel like I'm learning loads each time. Maskhill bottomed out and started exploring Nettle. It's been a good week.  8)

Offline al

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #28 on: November 05, 2012, 12:10:51 am »
Worth noting for anybody doing it from an older rigging guide that rope lengths given are incorrect. It says you need 28m and a 35m. We packed a 60m and didn't quite get us down. Looking at the newer one I downloaded from the DCA it says you need a 70m, which would have worked.

28m and 35m are still the numbers in the latest CCPC rigging guide, and I can vouch that these lengths work as I checked before we published the latest one. But 28 + 35 = 63, so it's hardly surprising that a 60m rope didn't quite get you down!!

Also, different riggers use more or less rope, depending on rigging style, and sometimes it's worth having that little bit extra, just in case!

Thanks for your comments on CO2 levels, and I'm glad you were impressed with Nettle, it's one of my favourite Peak District pots - it never ceases to impress me. Just imagine what it was like to dig into that in the old days!
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Offline global_s

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #29 on: November 05, 2012, 12:27:35 am »
Would they have dug out the shaft to be greeted with all the options when they got out the flats? That must have been quite something to discover...maybe I can start to see the appeal of digging...still there are lots of caves to do where the hard work has been done for me.

Massive facepalm at myself for rope lengths. This was a new rope so 66m before I soaked it overnight, do they lose their 10% that fast? We were a fair bit from the deck. Not the end of the world though as we had another 20m to hand. Interestly the DCA and Caves of the Peak District suggest a 70m.







Offline global_s

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #30 on: November 05, 2012, 12:36:49 am »
I'm guessing we were trying to get down this pitch then? Seems a little deceiving on the diagram as it was right behind us.

I'm well aware this is due to my own incompetence.   ;)


Offline al

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #31 on: November 05, 2012, 07:59:44 am »
The diagram you show seems to imply that the gulley pitch lands you right at the top of Elizabeth Shaft. It doesn't as I said above - the CCPC version is a little more accurate but all rigging guides are kind of schematic, and you have to look around you. Worth buying a copy of the CCPC rigging guide next time you're in Hitch & Hike as it does try to cover all the vertical stuff in the Peak.

As you've found, rigging lengths might be less than you expect, but, as far as I am aware, they are all accurate and possible - it is different riggers' styles which can and do cause variations (and the CCPC guide states this fact on every rigging diagram) - a tight caver's butterfly for instance will use less rope than a bowline or fig-8 o.t.b.

But we can all get it wrong sometimes - even me, ask Scud!!  :o
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Offline global_s

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #32 on: November 05, 2012, 09:38:26 am »
Thanks Al. Lesson learnt about rigging guides. :)

Offline cavermark

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #33 on: November 05, 2012, 09:39:47 am »
.... The meter used was DCA's Crowcon Gasman single gas monitor, and sampling was done continuously, hoping to use the logging feature of the instrument. Readings direct from the LCD display were also noted, and these are shown in the table below.

Surface 0.01%
Top of Gulley Pitch 2.08%
Foot of Gulley Pitch 2.22%
Top of Crumble 2.31%
Window to Beza 2.34%
Foot of Beza 2.41%
Foot of Shakes 2.37%
Foot of Fin Pot 2.47%

...............................

Were these CO2 percentages? Is that what the DCA meter is?...but you recommend carrying an oxygen meter? Would a meter that measures O2 and C02 be better ? (or are they much pricier?

Offline Ralph

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #34 on: November 05, 2012, 10:07:36 am »
A CO2 meter is an expensive bit of kit, an O2 meter is well within the reach of an individual or small club.
Trials are currently taking place comparing the results using both types of meter. This was done some years ago and the results were considered to be acceptable.
If the O2 meter says the air is poor get out. The precise level of O2 (or pollutant) is academic.

Offline al

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #35 on: November 05, 2012, 10:27:10 am »
The Crowcon Gasman single gas CO2 meter used in Nettle costs around £450, whereas an oxygen meter costs £78 for a disposable (lasts about 2 years) or £122 for one which is battery-changeable /repairable. (All prices exc VAT.)
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Offline pwhole

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #36 on: November 05, 2012, 12:23:36 pm »
On the history part, the entrance was discovered in 1932 by W. Sissons (a good friend of JW Puttrell and founder member of the DPC and others) and his dog, Nettle, who was chasing rabbits at the time. Apparently a rabbit disappeared into a small hole in a tiny hollow, some boulders were removed and a natural rift opening was discovered, and was draughting. So he got to work clearing it out and found it kept going downwards.

A proper dig was then initiated which lasted for about two years, and was often so tight that the diggers had to be suspended upside-down from a rope around their ankles to enable them to clear out the chokes of mud and small boulders from The Narrows. Obviously there's no room for a person and a bucket of spoil down there, so one can only imagine at the gymnastics involved. If you think it's difficult now we have SRT and Pantins, imagine what it was like then dressed in thick woolies, and on hemp rope ladders with shovels and buckets!

Eventually they got past the Narrows, and presumably the dig then got a lot easier as they could kick it all down instead of hauling it up. As far as I can tell, the main pitches down were all open once they reached the Gulley. No idea on the subsequent exploration as it was 1953 (Coronation year) before Elizabeth was descended - hence the name.  A wooden winch was lowered in pieces and reassembled underground for the first descents.

Offline Rob

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #37 on: November 05, 2012, 12:58:07 pm »
Nice report pwhole.

...a natural rift opening was discovered, and was draughting....
I find this suprising, as i don't think it drafts now.
The end is where we start....

Offline pwhole

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #38 on: November 05, 2012, 01:10:06 pm »
Cheers - only paraphrasing, of course. Re-draft as 'breathing' ;)

I think it must have have been in Puttrell's scrapbook at Sheffield Library where I read the original discovery account. I'm guessing it was more of the 'Carnation tin'-type situation - where one hole won't draught, but two imediately will. Didn't mean the thing was blasting in his face, just there were obvious voids beyond.

Offline cavermark

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #39 on: November 05, 2012, 04:38:24 pm »
Nice report pwhole.

...a natural rift opening was discovered, and was draughting....
I find this suprising, as i don't think it drafts now.

Unless the cave has relocated to america it won't draft, Rob.

I'm sure there's a draught in the entrance sometimes (lots of variables). 

Offline Rob

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #40 on: November 05, 2012, 04:52:40 pm »
I guess it also depends on how much of a shit it gives.....
The end is where we start....

Offline cavermark

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #41 on: November 05, 2012, 04:58:38 pm »
..I've not experienced shit coming out of that cave...

(I used to write "draft" but Jrat told me off and corrected me umpteen times in Meghalya cave descriptions etc., so I lernt to write propper english.)

Offline Brains

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #42 on: November 05, 2012, 07:05:20 pm »
Wasnt there an old shed placed over, or close by the entrance pre war to ease digging trips on the moor? Seem to recall mention of lots of deer bones having to be pulled out as well?

Offline MikeyP

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #43 on: December 30, 2012, 12:21:16 am »
If anybody’s still interested in the early history of Nettle, I’ve been sifting through some of the old DPC caving reports recently and came across an article written by GL Travis in 1935. It makes for a very long post! But I thought it’d be worth sharing…

"My first recollection of Nettle Pot is fortunately that of its discovery. A somewhat abortive Oxlow Meet was held in August 1930, but lack of energy and organisation found us on Sunday with only sufficient ladder to do the first shaft. Possibly the meet was only held in order to do repairs, for I recollect spending several hours down below, attempting to build a wall to catch a perilously perched block. Seville was there, and Matthy Burnby, and I worked under his direction, while the brothers’ Sissons worked on the top shaft. As the day wore on, we emerged bored and with unimpaired energy, which must surely have led the older and wiser members with questing noses onto the plateau above Oxlow. It was, I think, Matthy Burnby, who first saw the incipient pot, overgrown with nettles and filled with debris. It was Charlie Baines who confidently announced it was water worn and would go. It was Walter Sissons, characteristically enough, who bent down to pull away the first stone and it was Seville, soon to go to his heroic end, who miraculously produced gelignite and laid the first shot. I recollect our excitement as we crouched behind a hummock, heard the first dull explosion and rushed madly forward cheering beneath a barrage of falling debris. We peered down through the smoke and sure enough, the hole was deeper. Nettle Pot had started on its downward course to depths we little dreamed of.

My impressions of the following weekends are vague. Hardy pioneers dug away the first rocks and soon bucket and rope were in use. John Hind, Douglas, Sissons, Snelgrove and Joe Wells, were among the early stalwarts, and as far as I recollect, frequent shots were put in both by Seville and Snelgrove, culminating in a mighty effort by the latter, which was reputed to have shaken the windows in Castleton.

In 1931 the hole had assumed such dimensions, that Snelgrove petitioned for a hut to cover the entrance, and the noble edifice now existing was erected under his direction. Such reckless extravagance provoked a strong outburst among more conservative club circles, for those were the days of caution, economy, gold standards and such like, and the Treasurer could little foresee the hundreds of feet of rope ladder and miscellaneous tackle he would one day have to pay for.

I recollect making several visits after the hut was built. Streaming wet days with a biting wind cutting across the hills and inside the hut, muddied members laboriously hoisting buckets of stone and depositing them outside the hut in a convenient fold of the ground. Walter Sissons without collar, tugging at the filthy rope; Douglas looking even more disreputable than anyone could have dreamed possible; Billy Amies, even Sydney Turner doing his bit, and John Hind emerging from the hole, looking like a bedraggled Skye Terrier. I made several descents that year and I recollect well how miserable they were. Struggling on the confined floor with greasy boulders, using crowbar and hammer in a space about as big as the inside of a wardrobe, and constantly being warned not to touch this or that, piled up in convenient corners, for fear it came down and flattened us all out. Those however, were epic days and if the pioneers broke their finger nails and bumped their heads, at least they never despaired, for the draught came ever upwards and the floor sank ever downwards.

A few amusing incidents remain of those days. Two ramblers arriving at the hut to inquire the way, just as a blasting operation arrived at zero hour. The hut rose gracefully on its foundations, and the hikers, taking one hurried look at their chosen mentors, departed without further delay. Once we attempted an electrically fired charge, though even now no one is clear whether the charge was fired. The next week, Douglas groping in the mud, found what he believed to be the detonator complete with wire, and climbed to the surface with anxious care. However, his detonator turned out to be a lump of mud and those present breathed once more.  I recollect excavating bones, which later John Hind sent to Manchester for examination. They were remains of red deer, reminders of a day when Peak Forest was a Royal Preserve and death the penalty for poaching.

1932 was not, I think, a very great year for progress, but it was notable because fresh blood was transmitted to the club. Chantry, Chatburn, Thrippleton and Maurer joined the D.P.C. and their fresh energy and enthusiasm were immediately diverted to Nettle Pot. Like lusty young giants they flung themselves into the battle and once more the hole pursued its downward course. Douglas had been first through the upper narrows and John Hind first through the narrows proper. The Alcove and Chamber were reached later in the year after con-siderable blasting and very strenuous work. The year of grace 1933 therefore, opened with operations in the Chamber and it was at this moment that I renewed my acquaintance with the Pot. In August 1933, John Jenkins and his Birmingham braves came to the Bagshawe meet and the following day, Sunday, the entire party was conducted to Nettle Pot, where an attempt was made to render some assistance to Chantry, Chatburn and Thrippleton. In those days, one descended Nettle Pot cautiously and with con-siderable timidity. One forced one’s way downwards to the Alcove, privately wondering how a return journey would ever be effected and inwardly cursing one’s foolishness in having come so far. Worse, far worse was to follow! One listened at the Alcove to the sounds of exertion and profanity proceeding from below, and eventually one was permitted to creep a bit lower and, hanging on a ladder braced against a rickety stemple, survey the scene from one’s perch in the roof of the Chamber. There were, I think, three stemples in position when I paid my first visit and I felt three were but a tenth part of what safety demanded! The walls were walls. That is to say, they were stones laid one above the other and all quite ready to discuss the situation with one. Above, the great chockstone hung menacingly, ready to close the tiny chink which lead back to the warm world above. The floor was a loose mass of assorted masonry, and in the dim candlelight one descried a hero, with one arm through the rope ladder, waggling a crowbar in the debris at his feet and inviting the rest of us to listen to the stones crashing to the unknown floor a hundred feet below. At any moment one confidently expected both hero and debris to disappear completely from sight, and this opinion became in no way altered when one’s turn arrived to take over the crowbar. The walls descended gracefully from time to time and the pioneers ascended the rope ladder with the agility and celerity usually associated with absconding bookmakers. Such was the nerve racking ordeal of the Chamber, and those who took part in it are not likely soon to forget. Even now one feels the menace of the chockstone overhead, though it be tested a hundred times, and recalls at each passage of the Chamber, something of the early days. Week after week, work went forward making the place safer and safer, putting in stemples, cleaning down the walls, listening to the debris thunder down the great drop below. Excitement grew to a fever pitch as it became clear that the floor could be dropped and, after two very hard weekends work, the opening was cleared and the ladder lowered into the unknown cave, now called the Bottle. It is said “fortune favours the brave,” and it is also said that “fools rush in where angels fear to tread,” either of which could apply to the party first to enter the Bottle.

On that memorable September afternoon, John Hind, Joe Wells, Maurice Chantry and Henry Chatburn, spent some happy hours admiring the wonders of nature, and if their ladder was too short to take them to a further landing, one at least of the party was thankful to make a landing on the floor of the hut and return home a wiser man.

Thus warned, 1934 opened with further intensive work on the Chamber in which the indefatigable moles, Chantry and Chatburn, as usual, performed miracles. Snelgrove and myself, encouraged by the springtime, also ventured forth and assisted in the good work, our united endeavours succeeding in inducing a block weighing one hundredweight to descend and choke the neck again, thus greatly increasing the difficulty of this passage. It was however, virtually impossible to shift the block and so on May 27th, 1934, Maurice Chantry was lowered through the narrow neck, down the Bottle and landed on the unknown floor now called the Flats. I joined him a few moments later and shall not soon forget our excitement and triumph as we realised the magnitude of the discovery, the culmination of almost years of work, by so many patient helpers. We peered, wondering, into the chasm and listened to the stones we threw crash below, and realised the further depths waiting to be explored. Those were indeed moments lived at the peak of excitement, and we returned like conquerors to the Chamber, feeling as indeed Balboa must have done when first he saw the Pacific. Henry and Snelgrove, in turn, made the descent. Excitedly, we planned further expeditions into the unknown, sitting over the teacups and parkin at the little tin hut overlooking Mam Tor.

Snelgrove’s energy now knew no bounds and a mighty offensive was organised for Sunday, June 3rd. Further rope ladders were acquired, and on the Saturday another descent was made to the Flats, and rope ladders were lowered in preparation for the following day. Sunday dawned bright and fair and the big battallions were assembled at Nettle Pot in good time. That morning I was first to reach the floor of the Chasm, closely followed by Henry. We discovered the hole, now called Elizabeth, and a rough calculation with falling stones, showed that yet another 200 feet of sheer drop lay beneath us. The others arrived in the Chasm by degrees. Chantry, Hyde, Christie, Yeomans, Turner, Snelgrove and Bishop I know were present on that historic occasion. We lashed our ladders and lowered them down Elizabeth, and Henry Chatburn undertook the first descent.

Offline MikeyP

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #44 on: December 30, 2012, 12:23:42 am »
He climbed down to the full extent of the ladder, only to find himself still in midair, the ladder operating like some gigantic spring and moving up and down, he clinging to it, a most uncomfortable sensation. By slow degrees we eased him up on the life line and landed him exhausted in the Chasm. We tied on more ladder and Chantry undertook the arduous adventure, and again found the bottom still out of reach. Evidently Elizabeth was more difficult than we thought and likely to remain virgin till yet another assault could be organised. There was no more ladder available, and now the business of getting out had to be undertaken. Those were early days and we had not then developed the technique of drawing six hundred feet of rope ladder through the tortuous and difficult exits to the surface. We were raw recruits in those days, unaware of the sorrows of Nettle Pot, sodden ropes, recalcitory ladders, jamming rungs, and the hundred and one trials and tribulations out of which the club tigers of a later date were to be made. Hazy recollections still remain of that famous June 3rd 1934. John Hardy obliged to undress, to get through the Narrows, after spending patient hours in the Chamber. Sydney Turner stuck fast for 20 minutes and bawling for Douglas to descend and pull him through. Bishop, conveniently deaf. George Hyde and Snelgrove tying on ropes on the Flats, Colin Christie patient and efficient, Walter Sissons and Smith doing Herculean work at the surface, while the faithful Dinah chased cows and greeted each emerging explorer. So the day ended and Nettle Pot kept its secrets.

The next assault was fixed for July 21st but in the interval there was little peace. Parties laboured hard at knocking away knobs and protuberances in the passage down. Snelgrove and I, conscience stricken at the big block, which still choked the Chamber, made an effort and at last succeeded in shifting it. At last, Saturday July 21st arrived, and during the afternoon, ladders were placed in position and 250 feet of rope ladder were lowered to the flats and coiled there, a feat which seems rather wonder-ful looking back, besides being very unnecessary. Maurice and I, who had performed this fearsome feat of coiling ladder, prospected the Flats, and reached the Grotto above the Firbeck Hall passage. The party then retired to the Nags Head for supper, a true account of which Douglas Yeomans could possibly supply. Next morning, the party having been evacuated from the pub still intact, the Flats were quickly reached and the Chasm again descended. The ladder stored the day before, was lashed and lowered down Elizabeth, and George Hyde volunteered to make the descent. His naturally bright and sociable disposition, allied to his exceptionally strong arms, fitted him for this feat of strength and his running commentary during descent, landing and ascent, so overwhelmed those present that they were only concerned in hauling him back to a place of safety with all possible dispatch. George was the first to set foot in Elizabeth, and if his report of what he saw there was a little hazy, it is little to be wondered at. He did however, find a further passage leading to yet another descent, so honour was satisfied and we realised that other methods would have to be adopted if exploration of Elizabeth were to continue.

Besides this feat, the fact that two of us pushed the Stalactite Passage to a point some distance up the stream, is only of historical interest. More memorable to those who assisted, was the drawing of tackle and those unfortunates who had remained on the surface, spending a happy hour toiling at the 600 feet of ladder, wafted by the ceaseless flow of profanity from below.

Up to now, our main efforts had been concentrated on Elizabeth, but the passage explored by Chantry and myself on July 21st still awaited investigation. On August 26th John Jenkins and his Birmingham braves arrived in force, and strengthened by this reckless gang of desperadoes, it was decided to make this passage our chief objective. About twenty men were put down to the Flats in record time, the Birmingham men proving themselves to be true Tigers and moving at speed, urged on by our-selves at strategic points. Cannily led by Maurice Chantry and Alan Thrippleton, the rope ladder was dragged by Birmingham efforts to the hole, fixed, and Maurice was able to descend some 60 feet and enter a gallery, which led into a fresh system of passages and drops. The Birmingham braves were now in their element, and pushed the assault with reckless determination. The Matterhorn drop was negotiated and finally the party entered Firbeck Hall, an imposing chamber, difficult of access and fraught with danger. One of their number interposed his head in the path of a falling boulder, but bore his hurt with stoic calm until a doctor at Castleton was able later to stitch him together. Alan led the party back again, and we congrat-ulated ourselves that no more harm had befallen such a cheerful gang of ruffians.

The season was now approaching its end, and the Club was sufficiently exhausted to mutiny at the mere mention of Nettle Pot. The winter was therefore spent in planning a winch to overcome the appalling climb in Elizabeth. Henry Chatburn undertook drastic alterations to the hut, which had seen three years service, and was in parts beginning to show signs of wear. Assisted by Maurer and Chantry, Henry re-laid the floor and increased the floor space, the work being completed by April 7th 1935. In the meantime he and John Hind had designed and built the winch.

The Easter meet, April 20th 1935, stands out as one of the most miserable and abortive expeditions ever attempted at Nettle Pot. A violent thunderstorm raged on the Saturday afternoon, and the shaft soon resembled a shower bath. It was all but impossible to keep a candle alight. It was bitterly cold and all were literally soaked to the skin. We shivered on the mud flats and only an academic discussion on rose petals restrained our tongues from more pungent observations. The winch, which was being lowered in parts, stuck in the shaft, and finally we lost all contact with the surface. One of us eventually climbed the dripping Bottle, and we emerged to willing friends who stripped us naked, rubbed us with towels, and poured whisky down our throats. Next day, it was still wet but work was continued. The winch was eventually lowered and John Hind and Henry Chatburn set to work assembling it in the dripping depths of the Chasm. There, in the flickering light of candles, casting strange shadows on the tortured walls, resounded the clang of their hammers while the helmeted figures bent to their task like inquisitors in some medieval dungeon. The rest of us dragged our weary way to Firbeck Hall and attempted to explore in a desultory fashion.

Chatburn and Hind joined us later and managed to reach the bottom of the drop at the start of the Passage, but I do not recollect that anyone else had enthusiasm enough to follow them. They reported a further drop, as yet unexplored. The next day, Monday, found us with still less enthusiasm; indeed the ordeal of putting on sodden clothes and entering the still dripping depths, was enough to cool any ardour. The shaft was wired and a little work was done at the foot of the Bottle, clearing the passage from Bottle to Lip (a typical D.P.C. connection), a passage which hitherto had been perforcedly performed in the prone position. Thanks to these efforts, it was now possible to move in a stooping position, a great advantage when falling stones rendered speed a necessity. The telephone had yet to function. The day degenerated into an orgy of profanity as the ladders were drawn and proceed-ings brought to a close.
Whitsuntide drew near with fairer prospects, though mutiny was in the air and only the Club Tigers could be induced to appear. Paul Maurer was away, so we were denied the hot soup, which his dexterous handling of the primus had produced for us at Easter. Walter Sissons, Chantry, Chatburn, Thrippleton, Grainger and myself, turned out on the Saturday and lowered the ladders. On Sunday, we were reinforced by Walter Smith, John Hind, George Hyde and a stalwart visitor. The ladder was lowered down Elizabeth and attached to the winch, and we floated down like fairies to the bottom, scarcely bothering to place foot in rung, a tremendous saving of energy. Only George Hyde had been there before and a more detailed examination yielded some results. Henry, Alan and I climbed a rock slope and surmounted the chockstone, leading into a second narrow chamber, receiving a nasty fright en route when a large stone fell out of the roof and crashed between Henry and myself. Maurice had a look at the Rat Hole found on the previous visit by George, but drew back when the floor ran in and crashed into the unknown depths below. We decided further work was necessary before we could safely venture forward, and discreetly floated upwards to our friends, 170 feet above. The winch at all events had proved its worth, and another time a ladder would not be necessary. Monday found us with Walter Sissons, Chatburn, Grainger, Chantry, Thrippleton and myself to draw the ladders. Necessity being the mother of invention, we improvised a hitch with the winch to ease the stern effort of lifting the 200 feet ladder out of Elizabeth, till the tangle of ropes and ladders in the Chasm defied description and made us all roar with laughter. We ate our lunch in the comfort of the little Tackle cave, and rested ourselves for the ordeal of getting the gear to the surface. Henry went up and joined Walter on the surface, and these two supermen set to work in grim earnest to lift, assisted by ourselves, set at strategic points in the shaft. The never ending succession of ladders disappeared slowly up-wards, now catching and having to be lowered and eased, jerking and grinding against the narrow walls, to the shouts, curses and instructions of the weary men. We came out at last into the June evening, with a sigh of relief.

The hills, range after range lie before us as we strip off the sodden overalls and wet clothes beneath. The air is warm after the damp caverns below, and we dress leisurely, savouring the flutter of the wind about our tired bodies. Pipes and cigarettes are aglow and we linger by the hut, chipping the surface gang as they stow away the last ladders and coil the muddied ropes. We turn towards Mam Tor and the promise of tea. To our left stretches the long line of Rushup Edge, in front the battlemented mound of Mam Tor, dying away on the right in the ridge of Back Tor and Lose Hill, while behind it looms the mass of Kinder, grimly stark in the dying day. To the north west, Win Hill looks like a trifling hillock set on a level range, while behind, Derwent Edge stands like a great fortress frowning over the miles between. North east, the valley runs grandly into the distance, carrying the water whose source we so vainly search for beneath these bare lime-stone uplands. We linger a moment as the hut is closed, then shouldering our sacks, stumble downwards across the fields, leaving Nettle Pot and her secrets locked in the deep bosom of the great limestone hills."

Offline MikeyP

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #45 on: December 30, 2012, 12:43:00 am »
...in regards to the OT, went down as far as the flats last week and didn't notice any signs of bad air.

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #46 on: December 30, 2012, 06:07:23 am »
Interesting info on both counts, Mikey. :beer2:
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Offline bograt

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #47 on: December 30, 2012, 01:41:02 pm »
We don't get trip reports like that these days!! :)

I had forgotten about that winch, it was still there in the late 60's, early 70's (Didn't use it though) ;)
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Offline grahams

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #48 on: December 31, 2012, 09:25:46 am »
Great history MikeyP, thanks for posting.
The lack of a draught is probably due to the equalisation of the underground and external temperature that we've had recently rather than barometric pressure. A good freeze might clear the air.
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Offline cavermark

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Re: Serious CO2 problem in Nettle Pot
« Reply #49 on: December 31, 2012, 05:44:33 pm »
Great history MikeyP, thanks for posting.
The lack of a draught is probably due to the equalisation of the underground and external temperature that we've had recently rather than barometric pressure. A good freeze might clear the air.

Pressure is intrinsically linked to temperature and volume. P1 V1/T1 = P2 V2/T2.
Therefore, a relative change in any of those factors between inside and outside will cause a draught. As volume is normally fixed in caves a change in relative temperature or pressure will cause a draught, or lack of.