Buttered Badger Potholing Club
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  • Hits: 1974

The gainfully employed following the student

BBPC: Ed, Simon, TomTom
Guests: Dawn, Janine, Lucy, Rhys

It was the weekend of the AGM, the cave rave, the hottest party in town, but first there was some caving to be done. Badgers slowly congregated in Castleton on Friday night where much drinking occurred before we called it off for a early night at the TSG... At some time between 3-4am we went to bed.

We awoke in the morning to news that our cars were going to be turned into a Christmas market and so made a quick dash to move them to somewhere less christmasy before engaging in breakfast and tea to get us going for the day. The majority of the Badgers were going to spend the day setting up the partay 'room' whilst a few of us gave some none cavers a guided tour of Giants.

At sometime approximating 11am we met Ed and Janine at the car park at Giants and suited up for our grand day out. We'd brought a ladder for Garlands as it was probably a bit excessive to teach SRT to 4 people in a cave on a damp pitch, with the intention to return via the rift to avoid the pull through descent. I led the intrepid explorers into the very familiar cave (wasn't I here 2 weeks ago?) with brief pauses at the interesting bits before Garlands. My rigging for the pot was fairly vague using Mark R special ropes of obscure length.

Fairly quickly we were all down and made a run for it, zig zagging along the stream way. We made fairly fast progress due to no one in the group having girth issues and so were soon onto the more interesting get wet sections. Anyone seemed to be coping pretty well with the ever increasing dampness of their clothes as we progressed towards our deepest point and everyone seemed pretty happy with the situation as we regrouped at the bottom, despite Rhys having a snack crumbling disaster.

This time I didn't make my obligatory wrong turn and got the whole going back on yourself after crawling through a waterfall part right. The scramble up the other side went well and we were once again bombing along, fully staying not lost. The Giants windpipe is always just that little bit further away that I remember and just as I was wondering if it was time for another sit down we were upon it.

We told our newbies to ignore the sign telling of certain doom and one by one made our way into the tube of certain warmth. The water had creeped up a little from our last trip but was still fairly passable with only minor face in water issues. Now everyone was suitably cold so we made our break for the rift which was also just that little bit further away than I ever remember.

The rift is fairly easy to progress along but can be quite unnerving with the drop constantly between your legs. We slowly worked our way along until we got to the constriction where were helped our newbies through one by one. I wouldn't say there was total enjoyment with the situation but I think it went down pretty well.

Ed was last through the constriction and was chuckling to himself about seeing a torch floating down the stream below, we then informed him that it was his spare torch that had fallen off Janine, sqwarkward. We equipped Janine with one of our backups and made our way slowly back down to the streamway and Garlands whilst Ed went back downstream to see if his XP was still alive.

I climbed up the ladder to belay from the top and we began to bring our guys up. About half way through Ed reappeared with what appeared to be a working XP, seems they are hardy little torches. Once we were all up we de-rigged and headed for daylight, passing a highly disinterested looking group on the way out.

A grand day out with an evening of Badgery AGM fun still to come!

TomTom xxx