Monday, 30 November 2009

26th November 2009 - Low Douk Cave

With more rain having fallen over the course of the week and yet more again predicted, once more we headed off to find what we hoped would be a relatively dry cave.
Armed with another new light we climbed over the style on to the open moor to find a beautifully made footpath . Unfortunately it wasn't going the way we were.
The sink hole of Low Douk is easy to find but the "new" entrance looks a little unlikely.
The Power of Scurion
After a traverse over an open pot the way on is by way of a perfectly sized tube.

The open part of the cave from the traverse to the entrance


In the "New" entrance series

A short way along the tube a stream enters from the left. The amount of water this was bringing into the tube did not make continuing look like a fun prospect and we decided to turn around. John's perfect trip was in the offing - a retreat to the pub afer less than 5 minutes underground! Unfortunately he wasn't there to enjoy it.

Rather than heading straight back though we decided to try out our lights with a bit of filmaking, Dick trying his hardest to make the open pot look like a long and deep cave exploration. Finally all we needed was an "arriving at the sump" sequence and Dick spotted a likely looking niche in the wall that could serve as our "sump".

To his surprise the niche went, fine dry stone walling and fresh signs of capping leading the way on. In order to avoid a headlong descent onto the head of a small, but thankfully rigged pitch, a feet first approach is to be recommended. This in turn leads through into a small chamber fitted with a handy stemple and scaffolding beam, which again can be made best use of when approached feet first. A final squirm brought us onto a rigged traverse and a short drop into the "visciously" meandering streamway of Low Douk.

This "new new" entrance, courtesy of the Misty Mountain Mud Miners probably renders the old new entrance defunct, offering as it does a relatively easy and SRTless means of reaching the streamway.

We followed the streamway for a way downstream before figuring you can have too much fun constantly changing direction and having to move up and down the height of the rift to find the easiest way through. Having had a quick look in the roof of the rift we made our way back to the surface and a waiting hail storm. Last week getting into the car it had been 16 degrees, this week just 4. It's a good thing we'd chosen a cave on top of a hill as Tom's car wasn't happy without any petrol in it. There's always a reason for everything and had we not had to stop at the petrol station on the way to the Craven Heifer we'd never have seen the Wallis and Gromitesque headline, "Three peaks pooch collared again" on a bill board - must have been a slow news day.



Below - Video of the trip

1 comment:

Bru said...

Great video