Author Topic: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?  (Read 1966 times)

Offline bazdog

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rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« on: October 09, 2015, 11:28:29 am »
Got a short trip to Cantabria coming up next week and trying to figure out what trips to do. I have suggested this traverse but some of the others don't want to do much more than 5 hour trips.
The English trip reports suggest this trip should be 5 to 6 hours but I have just translated some Spainish reports which said they had taken 12 and 15 hours to do the trip (possible route finding?)
Has anyone done this trip 1st time with no guide and how long did it take you?
Thanks if any one can help.
ps We have applied for loads of permits so we can decide on trips when we are out there, Staying at the Spanish caving hut in Ramales and they have been very helpful in sorting this out for us.

Offline rsch

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2015, 12:51:27 pm »
Depends to a small degree on your direction of travel - Rubicera to Mortero is more straightforward than the other way but you'd be well advised to confirm that Mortero is actually rigged before committing to the trip from the other end.

Our first attempt was in the Mortero to Rubicera direction, included some additional route-finding difficulties and took seven hours or so.

I would expect you to struggle to do it on sight in five hours unless you are very practised at routefinding in unknown systems and don't go wrong anywhere but seven or eight ought to be entirely within reason.

Be warned that having a car at both ends is something you should factor into your planning - walking from either entrance to the other would be inconvenient and getting between the Rubicera entrance and the best place to leave a car can add a good hour and no small amount of excitement if you don't quite get it right...

Offline Swallowneck

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2015, 03:04:54 pm »
We did the trip with a biggish group a few years ago. It was a long day, I think 15/16 hours including walk in to Rubicera, which is not the easiest entrance to find. A recce of this could save loads of time.
Route finding turned out to be fairly straight forward but with great potential for error if you don't do your homework. Even though we never went wrong once, at times we were not sure we were going the correct way which definitely slowed us up.
We sent a younger team of two through two days later and armed with our knowledge and their youth they were though in about 7 hours.
A car at the finish is the way forward. The last thing you will want to do is walk back probably in the dark.
The trip is excellent with some fantastic bits of cave to travel though and has to be recommended. I would not hesitate to do it again.

Offline bazdog

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2015, 09:12:44 pm »
Thanks for the info, I was hoping it was a translation error but it could be a long day then.
I wonder if anyone else from the group is reading this or should i just tell them  :-\

Offline Loki

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2015, 10:21:20 am »
hi, we did it on-sight in 2004 shortly after it was connected.  once we found the entrance (recce'd the day before) i think it took roughly 8 hours - Beardy migt remember better. 
some did it this May in about the same time. both trips starting from rubicera.
 :shrug:who would do it and not check or rig the mortero first!? it wold be a long wait!

for a 5h trip - Tonio-Canuela(sp?)
If a problem can be solved there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good.

Offline bazdog

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2015, 07:49:53 pm »
Cheers, definatly going to rig mortero first, appears everything else is in place.
I like the look of tonio but one of our group is pretty wide (chest!) and there is mention of a tight pitch
probably do rio munio as its the shortest trip if you dont mind a ramble

Offline Loki

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2015, 09:42:42 pm »
if that's 'tight' written in a Spanish description i'd ignore it! i have no recollection of anything small (although it was some time ago (maybe 2004) so i may be corrected).  now La Turbina in Coventosa is a tight pitch necessitating yer stop on the end of a cowstail with handle bypassed .
the Spanish description of the Cueva Fresca thru trip would have you believe you need to take srt kit off to approach one of the pitches and its rubbish!
one word of warning for any of the long established trips in this area is watch out for worn maillons joining the chains to the plate hangers. IMO the ones on the cueva fresca trip are in a dangerous state - take some spares and some loops of 6mm plus accessory cord to back things up if they look dodgy.  the plates have worn into the maillon, and you cant tell without lifting up the maillon, and suddenly there's a scary groove worn in it!  also the chain is missing (May 2015) on the first pitch of this trip (so only hangers are there).
have fun!
If a problem can be solved there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good.

Offline bazdog

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Re: rubicera to mortero d'astrana - how long?
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2015, 01:43:06 pm »
thanks again for the advice. Hope we can make use of it.