Present: Lizzie, Mark K, Chris H, Ben, Luke, Tom L and Maddie
It was your typical Friday night when a handful of badgers set off from opposite ends of the country towards South Wales. Little did they know what events were going to unfold…
We arrived at the SWCC hut at about half 10 (while Maddie was still ploughing away at work) to find a pretty amazing hut – 10 cottages joined together that sleeps 80 in a maze of rooms – and settled down with a drink where we met Safari Park Steve, Big Boobs McGee and Round Features from Southampton Uni.
The Northern contingent and Maddie arrived at about midnight after randomly meeting at a service station in Worcester where Luke was buying a phone charger because his phone satnav had died and his satnav satnav wanted to send him to Texas.
The rest of the evening was very sedate. Nothing of note happened, no-one photographed or recorded anythinginteresting, no-one got naked or was buttered up or weed on the floor and everyone remained in their own clothes throughout the evening.
We awoke bright and fresh at a respectable 11am the following morning to find our guide had given up on us (seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Badger section 4 paragraph 3). Undeterred, we had our local neighbourhood pastry chef show us the way and headed off up the hill towards the top entrance of OFD 2 (NB: Chef Simon prefers the bottom entrance).
With Lizzie navigating the cave, it was an unsurprisinglymighty successful trip! We saw The Big Chamber Near the Entrance, The Trident, The Judge, Shatter pillar, ran through Selenite Tunnel screeching like monkeys and went up and down the stream way (definitely not because we went the wrong way for a bit). Mark K had a drink from the spring of youth which cured his mystery illness that had developedbetween 11pm and 11am the previous night (still unexplained).
We decided not to do any of the pitches on this trip and just explore as far as we could with a hand line and our limbs. It was all relatively large passages and traverses with lots of clambering over rocks and tiptoeing along tiny edges over huge crevasses. Maddie chose a novel way to manoeuvre the passages and got a little overheated in her “chemo hat”.
The cave system contains 70km of surveyed passage which we only just scratched the surface of (literally! lol, pmsl eh Mark) so we hope to do another trip or two soon into OFD 1 and 3.
Chris and Ben discovered their inner child on the way back to the hut, jumping into puddles and giggling, until Chris was all tuckered out. Luke and Maddie disappeared for about two hours to buy garlic bread while Southampton Uni got dressed up in kilts and dresses to go and eat a roast in a cave. We made dinner for the five thousand, played spoons and hit the hay.
After another early start at the crack of midday we decided to look around the quarry next door and find some geocaches before setting off home, all agreeing it was an excellent trip.
Mark, Ben, Chris and Lizzie all indulged in a pizza and a chocolate/toffee glory on the way home (apparently this must be recorded for posperity).
By Lizzie and Mark K