Andy Sparrow, Rich Nurse
A good trip with an unexpected twist..
Andy and I set off to the recent banged area at the top of the new pitch, at the end of the new link down into the stream course. The plan was to clear the area and install anchors for a traverse line and rigging points for the pitch.
The bang had done a good job, obviously making a gap clear for an abseil so we set about installing the rigging. When the bolts were installed, Andy set up the rope and I headed into the link to use plug and feathers on some of the restrictions.
Andy set off down the abseil, keen to see how the pieces of the new route are coming together. Unexpectedly, halfway down the pitch, he found an open passage. This lead off between current known layers of the system, for approximately 5 metres. Returning to the top of the pitch we discussed what he’d seen but wasn’t sure if it was big enough to get into. I decided to have a look, and managed with some acrobatics and rock clearance to get roughly two body lengths into the passage.
The sides of the passage are very sharp, in layers similar to that of the link section above. I managed to get within half a metre of the end of the passage, where it appears to open into a perpendicular rift, with space to stand up in. I couldn’t see either direction to confirm how long this space is, however. I think it should be accessible without too much work, some rock restrictions removed and possibly the floor being dug out a little. So some unexpected interest on a Saturday trip with much speculation as to the potential!
— Richard Nurse 2/04/2023