Saturday February 28th 2009
Growling Hole (First YCC trip!)
Gary, Matt, Ade, Laura
After a lavish breakfast at Bernies with some of the YUCPCers doign Vespers that day, we headed to Kingsdale and commenced the unpleasant walk up the hill to the top. After waving goodbye to the Vespers team we made our way to Growling, which is approximately 100m further on. The entrance didn't look inviting! A narrow slot dropped into the 4-5m entrance pitch which was rigged following much faff from a large slab. A squirming descent was made by Gary, and then by me. Gary by this time was at floor level looking uninspired by the way ahead, a low and apparantly very wet crawl. I think he thought it looked almost sumped (sometimes too much light from our Scurions can be misleading!). I went in and pushed my way down the flat out passage and into the water. It wasn't as bad as it looked. A second crossrift was soon reached, and a little bit more flat out wiggling in a few inches of water soon reaches a more pleasant crawling section, with about 8 inches deep water in (enough for full body wetness!). This wet wallow continued for some distance, eventually ending where the passage constricted horizontally and rose up out of the water. I shouted back to Gary that it was OK and that he could come though. Laura also followed, however we were unable to tempt Ade into the water. Certainly given the potential for rain above ground, proceeding too far into this cave today would not have been sensible.
After some time attempting lengthy communications along the echoy passage, I pressed onwards, through an awkward shaped sideways bit of passage (tacklesacs troublesome!) to a more pleasantly sized crawl, eventually reaching waterfall chamber, where loads of water poured into a stooping height chamber. Gary and I stopped to take some photos and we then made our retreat. Despite being a little chilly from the earlier waiting around, a neofleece is optimum for this cave as long as you keep moving. I'd like to take a return trip in drier and more settled conditions.