27th November

I was on a trip to the Peak District attend the BCRA Cave Science Symposium being held at Hulland Ward, near Ashbourne. Decided to stay at the Orpheus Caving Club hut. The passing of Storm Arwen sort of changed our plans and we spent nearly 5 hours digging snow off the track leading up the hill, back to the A515. The image below was snapped by Andy Farrant during a brief rest from digging!

However, a reduced team of stalwarts did turn-out at Hallowe’en Rift to continue the excavation in the Soft South. The following report was penned by Jon:

“Three of the team (Brockers, Jake and Jon) arrived in stormy conditions. The strong wind overnight had not completely died down and the rain had turned to sleet.

With only a small team, the approach taken to digging was different to usual. Sixty bags were sent underground and all three of the team went to the bottom and proceeded to dig.

New hauling rope. Photo by Brockers.

Jon dug in the North-West corner where Nick’s boulder used to be. The apparent bedding closed down to the North; any development in that part of the pot can only be to the West (or down!).

Brockers and Jake dug under the arch in the North-East corner where Jake’s boulder used to be. This remains the obvious place to dig.

Having filled all sixty bags and replaced the rope on the bottom skip, hauling proceeded in a very efficient and industrious fashion. Spoil was initially stacked at the junction and then hauled to the surface in conditions of bright sunshine. The few rocks dug out today were left underground.

The team then retired to a local hostelry for well-earned refreshments.”

Author: mendipgeoarch

Archaeologist, Geologist, Speleologist