Lizzie, Luke, Joe, Becky, Owain, Tom, Shane, Nicola and Caitlin
It all started on Saturday afternoon as we transformed into an attacked lady, a badger in a suit complete with monocle and pipe, a dead smurf, two fleecy devils, Dracula and a 1920s flapper girl (Joe). We managed to fit all 9 of us plus sleeping bags, caving kit and the obligatory alcohol into a mini one and a VW polo and set off to an anonymous location in the Peak District!
There were two tracks leading to the cave, one wide, flat and dry and one tight, muddy and significantly lower on the left than the right. Naturally we had been directed to the latter. Luckily the cars made the journey and then it was just an easy stroll through the spacious, clean cave entrance! The inside looked amazing with candles, cobwebs, lights and pumpkins. We set up our Harry Potter and Voldemort/’Proffessor Quirrell’ (who consisted of three different sized circle cut outs) pumpkins and got some food. Slightly unnervingly no other Badgers were in fancy dress at this point but soon enough the cave was filled with a leopard, a pimp, Rod Stewart, a dead caver (not literally), a man in a wedding dress made from a bed sheet, a tramp, a penguin, a pig, a fairy, a reverend, a surgeon, an evil wizardy thing and a man wearing a hessian sheet as clothes. Just your standard Halloween costumes really.
The actual meeting was pretty short, sweet and informative. The Badgers have a bank account (finally) and bought some stickers! And I think there was some mentioning of people joining, voting of officers and something about an expedition to Oman...
Anyway, after that we got out the ale, complete with actual bar tap (oh yes!), cranked the speakers all the way up to half volume and got that party started! Everything gets a bit hazy around this point but there were glow sticks, a human pyramid, much dancing and a lot of crawling in and out of the cave to pee. It was an amazing cave party!
Eventually we decided to call it a night and snuggled into our sleeping bags. We awoke the next morning after a whole extra hours sleep (the clocks had gone back!) to find Mark’s pumpkin bucket full of wee from the night before. He successfully manoeuvred it out of the cave and we all headed out for breakfast with Shane still in Full devil’s costume and red face paint. Over your everyday breakfast of fry ups, the world’s biggest BLT and a ham and coleslaw jacket potato (?!?!) we reminisced about the night before.
We headed back to the cave, cleared up, cleared up again when all the bin bags split then me, Luke, Joe, Becky, Owain, Shane, Nicola, Tom and Caitlin all set off to do the Giant’s short round trip praying Luke’s car wouldn’t break half way up Winnats Pass. I’ve never done the cave before but it is really fun! I loved all the climbs and the traversing, less so the crawling through freezing cold water... For some it was their first SRT trip and, although we only did one pitch, everyone’s got to start somewhere and they all did really well :) The whole trip took us about four hours then we all got changed in the dark and headed home to Liverpool.
The cave party was brilliant and we had a really good day’s caving, I can’t wait ‘til next Halloween!