Buttered Badger Potholing Club
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The Big Dig

 

Lizzy H, Adam P, Mark R, Luke N, Evil Tom, Ben E, Tom S, Zutawin, Caitlin, Shane, Ryan
Sunday 4th December

 

Sunday was the day that the LUPC freshers were introduced to the utter joy that is cave digging!

 

Everybody met at Rowter farm at around 10:00, Lizzie and I went there via the Woodbine Café and brought 11 of the biggest bacon sandwiches in Derbyshire back up the hill.

 

It was a reluctant change in the icy wind but we were all soon on our way over the hill and heading down the double rigged shaft. Sadly before everyone could get down there we felt the sting of horizontal sleet and all of a sudden digging and hauling seemed an even more appetising prospect!

 

Unfortunately, because of recent heavy rains, the floor of the dig was flooded! We have dug down to a pretty hard compacted floor now which the water doesn’t soak away through and the dig face has formed a dam, coupled with the downward trending nature of the passage, the water at the face made it too wet to dig forwards. Luckily, there was a huge pile of dug material sat at the foot of the hauling shaft so everyone set to work removing that and cleaning out all the ledges.

 

We had a stove and teapot with us so everyone took it in turns to haul, dig, pull, shovel, scoop and drink tea for the next few hours.

 

There was a huge amount of water stonking out of Hypothermia passage so we took the hoses down the phreatic dig and left them there for the day. When we left, the water had backed up to a depth of around 2m.

 

When we had dug all we could dig, eaten all the mince pies we could eat and drank all the tea in china we started the long journey out and down to the Cheshire Cheese for a well-deserved pint.