12th November

With Brockers, Tav, and Nick

Down on numbers again but, no matter, there’s still work to be done!

The stalagmites underneath the pissing tree! It is clear that the obstruction is composed of fractured calcite formations and conglomerate cobbles/boulders that have been re-cemented. The stalagmites form part of a calcited flowstone capping. All later buried by successive layers of clay, silt and sand. Composite image 12/11/2022

Brockers came armed with a custom-made mattock (apparently to Jake’s design) and took to the forefront digging at the current dig-face underneath the pissing tree. Tav cleared away filled bags and rocks also, in the quieter moments, levelled the passage floor. I was transporting the spoil along the NE passage to the pot and hauling the loaded bucket up to Nick on the ledge. Nick dragged the filled bags to the entrance. The rocks had been stacked along the NE passage to be removed at some later date, when we have a bigger team.

The calcited blockage is proving to be more of a problem than anticipated. There does not appear to be a route over the top as hoped and neither does a way to the right-hand side seem to present an easy option. There is the possibility of going down in the hope the passage widens to the right-side. We will see.

Soon it was after midday, time to stop digging and clear out the cave. Seventy-two bags were hauled out and added to the spoil heap. Empty bags re-packed, dropped down the entrance, ready for refilling during the next session.

Hunter’s Lodge Inn for some refreshment and conversation.